The Tower Theatre has changed the plans on a community rally for Bend's Olympian, Ashton Eaton on Thursday, August 9th.
Tower Theatre spokesman Ray Solley says they want it to be very exciting for everyone, so they have decided to show the last two events with a live stream.
Doors open at 9:30 in the morning; the javelin throw is at 10:30 and 1500 meter race at 1:20 p.m.
Again, it is a free event and they encourage everyone to dress for the USA red, white & blue or Mountain View red and black, or Oregon Duck yellow and green.
Tune in to KBND's "Your Town" this Thursday from 8 to 9 a-m., Ray Solley is our guest and he will give us more details.
The Bend Fire Department has put out a call for good, used sports equipment for our “Sister City” of Condega, Nicaragua.
Spokesman Mark Taylor says they are trying very hard to help out these kids that have practically nothing.
"Condega, like anywhere in the world, kids certainly have the desire and need to go out and play. The problem is when play requires sport equipment like it does for soccer and baseball and basketball, and you line in the second poorest country in the western hemisphere, going to ask mom to buy a soccer ball is something they just can't do."
Starting Tuesday donation boxes are set up in all Bend Fire Stations and City Hall to collect the equipment for soccer, baseball, basketball and track.
If you would rather give money; a check can be made out to the “Condega Bomberos project and taken to the fire department. All donations are tax deductible.
An agreement is finally made that will allocate more water to the City of Prineville from the Crooked River, and Mayor Betty Roppe is thrilled.
An announcement is made Tuesday by U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley of Oregon, that now they can introduce legislation; the Crooked River Water Agreement, that will move that "wild and scenic" boundary line, opening up the water to the city.
Mayor Roppe says they have been working on getting this agreement for years. "Every time we pump water from the ground, we have to mitigate for that. And rather buying mitigation rights and drying up some ranch or farm, we are going to have 5100 acre feet introduced into the river from behind Bowman Dam that will benefit the fish and the wildlife and will still allow us to drill for more water." U.S. Representative Greg Walden of Oregon introduced similar legislation in the House in June and it passed unanimously.
Roppe says she believes if everything goes well, the Senate bill will also pass sometime in September or October.
Basically Alex created a plastic triangle with a suction cup that is placed in the middle of the plate, to give you something to push against to get your food on your fork.
Alex's invention is on Indie GoGo, a global fundraising site.
His goal is to raise 35-thousand dollars by mid September.
If he reaches that goal, he will start mass producing the "cleaner eater."
For the last two years, Cooper has been the Executive Director of "Partnership to End Poverty."
Prior to that, Cooper was a judge/administrator for Crook County. He has also been a member of the Crook County School Board since 2009.
Cooper will take over at Neighbor Impact on September 24th.
He was chosen from 60 candidates after an extensive nationwide search.
A 911 call about a possible shooting at Central Oregon Community College in Redmond causes the campus to go into lockdown mode for less than an hour this afternoon.
COCC spokesman Ron Paradis says the 911 call caused police to lockdown three buildings and evacuate and search one, officers found nothing.
"It was good to see police take action and do a thorough search and lockdown. Our system worked, we were able to lockdown the building and keep everyone safe. At the end, there was no credible threat." Paradis said.
The anonymous threat came in closely after a hold-up at David Haffey Fine Jewelry on 6th street in Redmond. It's not clear yet, if the two incidents are linked.
During the emergency process, thirty people were evacuated from 'building two' on the COCC campus in Redmond while officers made sure there was no threat. Police gave the 'all clear' just after 1 p.m.
Patti Moss the former President and CEO of the Bank of the Cascades has been inducted into the Oregon Bankers Association's "Hall of Fame."
OBA President Linda Navarro says there is a lot of competition for the award, but believes that Moss was an obvious choice.
"Patti is the perfect candidate for induction into the Hall of Fame. She was a very interesting and long career in Banking. She started as a teller and worked her way up to CEO and she's been recognized nationally multiple times as one of the top CEO's in the nation for community banking."
Navarro alsosays one of "Patti's best qualities" is her pride in being an Oregon Banker.
"it's been a though road for a lot of industries including banking during the past several years, and it's been heartening to people in our industry to look at Patti and see how much she honestly cares about building strong communities, and she'll be the first one to tell you how proud she is to be an Oregon Banker and that makes us all a little bit more proud."
She was inducted into the "Hall of Fame" in Idaho at the Oregon Bankers Association annual convention, held earlier this month.
Nationally, Moss has been named three times by "US Banker Magazine" as one of the top banking CEO's in the nation. She was also honored as one of the top 25 'most powerful women in Banking' for five consecutive years.
The honor also recognized her work in local groups such as St. Charles Medical Center, Central Oregon Community College, Bend Chamber of Commerce, Bend Rotary, and the Oregon Community Foundation, just to name a few.
The "4 K for Cancer" started in Maryland at the end of May and will end up in Portland this Saturday.
Kevin Cocran did the ride a couple years ago and decided to do it again this year.
"A big reason was I really felt powerless in college to affect change in a tangible way. I have a lot of cancer in my family, my uncle, grandfather, dad ... all had cancer. And this was a great way for me to get involved and make a tangible difference on my own.
Each biker raised at least four thosuand dollars to help young adults dealing with cancer.
There are three of these "4 K for Cancer" rides this year and collectively they are raising half a million dollars.
16 year old Nichole Pomeroy drowned on Sunday when her raft capsized. She was rafting with a friend's family when the accident happened.
Dwes Hutson with the Douglas County Sheriff's Office says seven people were in the raft when it capsized, but Pomeroy is the only one who didn't make it to shore.
Police say all had life jackets on, but Pomeroy's came out when she went under the water and got caught in some debris.
Bray faces 11 counts involving two differnet women.
Judge Stephen Tikin found Bray guilty of six counts of rape and sexual assault involving a 25 year old woman he met htorugh an online dating site.
But he also found Bray not guilty of five counts of rape and sexual assault involving a former girlfriend.
Bray's sentence will be announced at a future hearing.
"Let's Stirrup some Memories" is the theme for this year's Deschutes County Fair that runs Wednesday, August 1st through Sunday, August 5th.
Fair Spokesman, Ross Rogers says there are specials that people can take advantage of.
"Wednesday is 'Pepsi Day', all carnival rides are 30 percent off. All Senior citizens 62 and above are free. Thursday is 'KTVZ Day' and all kids 12 and under have free admission to the fair all day."
For people who want to spend more than just one day at the fair, 'season passes' are available.
Here are the regular prices:
Adult: Daily: $10; Season: $19
Children: (6-12) Daily: $6;
Season: $11 (5-and-under) Free
Senior Citizen (62+) Daily: $6;
Season: $11 (Free on Wednesday)
1110 KBND will have a booth at the fair. Lars Larson will also broadcast his show live from the fair. Come say "hi" to Lars and staff from KBND.
This coming Wednesday the Bend City council will talk about how much money they may give to the effort to bring a four year University to Bend through OSU-Cascades.
Bend City Manager Eric King says at the upcoming meeting he will suggest that the council give funds to the cause, but not to exceed 250 thousand dollars.
He says the money available comes from about 2 million in extra funds available through very conservative budgeting. He says 1 million be added to emergency funds and the remaining money will be spent on things like repaving, patrol cars for police, and other projects.
King says he'll submit his recommendation to the council this Wednesday. "My suggestion to staff is that its no more than 250 thousand dollars."
King says despite the tough economy they've been able to beef up the city's emergency funds from 5 million dollars six years ago to about 10 million dollars recently.
Republican Representative Jason Conger and Challenger Nathan Hovekamp will face off in their first live debate. 1110 KBND radio is hosting the event tomorrow, Tuesday morning, from 8a to 9a.
Both men are from Bend and are vying for the District 54 state Representative position. Jason Conger is the incumbent.
Some of the topics we will cover include Oregon's non "Right to Work" status, School Choice, the Corporate Kicker and an effort to repeal the state's Inheritance Tax, just to name a few.
We'll also ask them to describe their background, their greatest accomplishment and reason they are running for state office.
We welcome your emailed questions, or live calls. To email a question before the debate send it to email@example.com and specificy which candidate (or both) you are directing the question to. To call in during the live debate, call 541-388-1110.
Summit High School is named one of the top two prep sports programs in the U.S. according to Max Preps.com.
Summit Principal Dr. Alice Dewittie says as a medium enrollment school, coming in at number two in the overall standings speaks volumes about the school and the community. "I think that our program here at Summit High School gives multitudes of students opportunities to move to their person best as well as compete at state and national levels. And that is an honor and a privilege that we gain from the City of Bend and from the Bend La Pine School District."
While Dr. Dewittie is still getting her feet wet working at Summit; she looks forward to the coming school year to see more achievements from the students, athletes, faculty and community.
Summit Athletic Director Gabe Pagano says it's a team effort, and he's not referring just to the students. "We have great coaches, we have great programs, we have great volunteers, assistant coaches, administration, and everybody's just kind of on the same page and everybody's got the same goal. Yeah, it's great to win a state championship, but it's even better to see the number of kids excelling in the classroom. The number of kids picking up leadership roles, throughout the school."
Pagano says the Max Prep organization kept in contact with him over the past school year and he knew that Summit was close to the top.
Max Preps is an organization that keeps records of and follows almost all of the nation’s high schools sports; and they awarded the first ever "Max Prep Cup" recently. It’s awarded to those schools for winning the most state championships in the school year. Both the top school, American Heritage in Florida, and Summit, took the one-two spots which is a big achievement as they are considered "medium enrollment" schools.
City officials react with a touch of sadness to the news that City Manager David Brandt has decided to accept the same position in Cupertino, California.
Brandt began his career in Cupertino and apparently, city officials there made him an offer he could not refuse says Redmond Mayor George Endicott. Endicott could not praise Brandt enough for what he's accomplished in his short three year tenure. "Oh, he's been excellent. From the minute David got here, you know we hired him because of his experience and talent and some of the things he's brought. Downtown revitalization, being able to deal with the golf course, being able to deal with an airport; all those kinds of things. And I mean he just shown all the time he's been here, so I’m really kinds of sad to see him go."
Endicott says the council will meet in the next week or so to plan on how they will replace Brandt. He says it took 9 months to hire him, and they hope that it will take much less time to find a new city manager. Brandt’s last day is August 30th.
The U.S. House is expected to take up extending the Bush tax cuts this week.
Last week the Senate approved extending the tax cuts for those earning less than $250-thousand dollars a year.
Walden says he'd like to see congress agree to a one year extension of the tax cuts and then work on real tax reform going forward.
Many feel final agreement on these tax cuts may not be reached until after the Presidential election.
The tax cuts are set to expire at the end of the year.
Bray is charged with raping and assualting two women.
The former COCC anatomy instruyctor claims the sex was consensual, but the victims see it differently.
Bray faces nearly a dozen counts of sex abuse - some with mandatory sentences of years in prison under measure 11.
Judge Stephen Tiktin will return his verdict Monday at 2 p.m.
The President of the Oregon Farm Bureau says other countries would like to buy food and other agriculture products from Oregon, but lawmakers in Washington D.C. aren't doing enough to make more exporting, happen.
President Barry Bushue says the trade blockade is coming from congress as a whole, not necessarily from Representative or US Senators from Oregon.
"The challenge I think we have is that Ameria lags far behind other exporting nations in regards to mulit-lateral or bi-lateral trade agreements with other countries. And that does create a challenge for us that these other countries are able to take advantage of these opportunities at a much faster rate than our congressional folks seem to be able to adopt."
There has been some good recent news on the exporting front. The first blueberries from Oregon were just accepted into Korea.
Bushue says there are 'tremendous opportunities' for explorting Oregon products, especially to rapidly growing countries that have citizens with more discretionary income.
OFB President Barry Bushue was a recent guest on 1110 KBND's Your Town with Lori Raab. He also talked about the impact on Oregon from the nationwide drought and how historic rangeland fires will impact Oregon Ranchers. If you'd like the hear the full interview look under podcasts, and look for the Your Town icon.
Bushue runs a family nursery stock and berry operation near Boring, Oregon, just east of Portland.
A local non-profit group is getting national recognition for a program that connects teenagers with Senior Citizens. The Executive Director of the Central Oregon Council on Aging, or COCOA, says the non-profit just won a national award for a teen-elder technology program. Pamela Knorr says the class involved teenagers helping seniors learn how to use Facebook, digital camera downloading and cell phones.
"That inter-generational opportunity is really why we started it. We started it thinking it'll be a great opportunity to connect seniors with the internet, but what we found out is that the magic is really the relationship between the teens and edlers and the computers aren't really important. And the seniors have so much respect for the teens who know something they don't know and the teens get all puffed up and proud of themselves for doing something as an expert. It's really impressive and magical."
The national award comes from the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging. Pamela Knorr was a guest on 1110 KBND's Your Town on Friday, July 27th. To hear the entire interview you can listen to our Podcast on our website. Look for the Your Town icon.
Crook County Sheriff's Office and Crook County Fire and Rescue are called to a rollover crash on SW Reservoir Road, 25 miles south of Prineville and find a mystery on their hands.
A little after 8:30 Friday night they located the pick-up in question; but no driver or occupants were found in the area.
A short time later though, the driver, Hillary Ann Pearsall, 36, of Redmond arrived as the passenger in another car. Apparently Pearsall swerved to avoid a deer on the road and, when over correcting, lost control of the pick-up which crashed through a BLM fence and rolled.
She was not cited and was taken to St. Charles with non-life threatening injuries.
The City of Bend is holding two workshops to receive community input on the design of the Reed Market Road Corridor. The project team will review the design plans which include: a three-lane cross section, medians, bike lanes, sidewalks, intersection improvements and landscaping.
A new multi-lane roundabout at 15th Street is being recommended as well as a traffic signal at American Lane and realigning the American Lane Bridge.
The news release says the staff in interested in public comments of these and many other plans.
The project budget is $18-million with construction set for summer of 2013. The workshops are both on Wednesday, August 1st. One is from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and the other is 5 p.m. to 6:30 at the Bend Police Department Municipal Courtroom.
Watkins is the Executive Director of the Center for Economic Research at California Lutheran University.
Watkin's predicts the gross domestic production in Oregon will jump 3.7 percent each quarter between 2012 and 2014, but payroll levels will only increase a little over one percent during that same period.
He says Portland's Intel operations and Prineville's Facebook Data Center have had a significant positive effect on economic growth in Oregon.
Walden will meet with local owners and families at Murray and Holt Motors in Bend.
He says if the Bush tax cuts aren't extended - it could destroy 88-hundred Oregon jobs and nearly 800-thousand jobs nationally.
Walden expects the U.S. House to take up the issue of extending the Bush tax cuts for all earners next week.
Wednesday, the Senate narrowly passed the tax cuts just for those famlies earning under 250-thousand dollars year.
After four years of serving as Sisters Economic Development Manager, Mac Hay is ready to move on.
For two years Hay did the job on a volunteer basis and the last two years he was paid.
Sisters Mayor Lon Kellstrom says Hay will stay on until August. "He's not going to renew his contract. His contract ended at the end of June. He's got other things he wants to do, like consulting work. He's going to continue to work until thevend of August. He has three proejcts he's working on."
Kellstrom expects to hire an interim replacement soon and thinks the city council will look for a permanent replacement by the end of the year.
Great news for the Crook County Fairgrounds: the Northwest Professional Rodeo Association approved a three-year contract to hold the finals in Prineville.
Fairgrounds Manager Casey Daly says having one of the rodeo community’s greatest events in their arena for three consecutive years will be a super boost to the community. "It means us being able to showcase the community, showcase our fairgrounds, our facilities. It means economic boosts when the finals are happening here. So there's just a lot of positive going on with this win."
Daly says thousands of people come to participate or watch the finals and that translates into an economic boom for merchants in Prineville and Central Oregon. The Chamber of Commerce is planning to build an entire weekend of events that will surround the NPRA finals.
This year the finals will be September 21st and 22nd.
You will see thousands of golf balls rain down on Riverbend Park this Sunday; it's part of a fundraiser for "Wendy’s Wish."
Spokesman Daryl Hjeresen says "Wendy's Wish" was created in honor of Wendy Huntley, a woman who died from colorectal cancer, to support to patients throughout their cancer journey. "Wendy's Wish is an organization that helps cancer patients and their families with non-medical related expenses that insurance and things like that don't cover. We’re working through the St. Charles Foundation to help these families with expenses like groceries and gas, and if they need help with their mortgage, and things like that."
Hjeresen says they've been selling numbered golf balls at various locations all spring and summer and they came up with this unique idea to raise money for the program: "In order to move this thing forward, we decided the golf ball drop is a fun way to do that. And it's a raffle. And we have about $10,000 worth of prizes that have been donated by our local merchants. We have some major sponsors that have put some good prizes together. We’re going to drop the balls on a grid of 6 golf flags. The closes to the hole of the major sponsor wins their prize; the closest to the hole going out from the center flag will win the secondary prizes."
Hjeresen says you will be able to purchase the golf balls at Riverbend Park this Sunday beginning at 11 a.m. A helicopter will begin the first of several drops at 1 p.m.
Fire managers just started a higher fire precaution level for the Deschutes and Ochoco National Forests, The Crooked River Grassland and Prineville BLM. The Industrial Fire Precaution Level-II restrictions went into effect at midnight Thursday morning, July 25th.
Under an Industrial Fire Precaution Level II power saws and other specified equipment can only be used between 8pm and 1pm.
The regulations affect both commercial and personal use firewood cutters, and industrial operators.
To check Industrial Fire Precaution Levels and Public Use Restrictions in central Oregon log on to: www.fs.usda.gov/centraloregon.
The Bank of the Cascades is teaming up with Economic Development for Central Oregon in hopes of bringing new jobs and businesses to Central Oregon. As the lead partner in the project, the bank will provide the resources needed to continues EDCO's program that helps new businesses get established.
1110 KBND news spokes with Bank of the Cascades President and CEO, Terry Zink about the partnership. He says, "One of the things that we've been looking for are ways as a Community Bank to help stimulate the economy in the area that we serve. And probably the best way to do that is through economic development. I met with EDCO and people with 'Venture Box' and in fairness- they came up with the plan".
The Bank of the Cascades is the first private business partner investing in EDCO's Venture Catalyst Program. The idea was launched three years ago with a Small Business Administration grant.
A Bend Counselor doesn't believe the shooting in Colorado will result in added gun control laws- especially on the national level. Jane Meyers says when there is a massive and random shooting there is often talk among lawmakers about added "controls" on gun possession and ammunition sales. But new legislation rarely happens because as a general rule Americans don't like to be controlled. Meyers even talks about drunk driving laws as an example. She says even though we all agree that the harm drunk drivers can cause can be devastating - our penalties are light compared to other countries. For example - you can get the death penalty in at least one country for a DUII. And, in Russia, where they like their Vodka, a drunk driver can lose his or her license for life. Meyers adds that when horrific events happen people often are fearful and have the urge to "do" something to prevent a similar event in the future.. She says its often better to focus on what you *can* control.
Economic forecasts have been tough to listen to the last couple of years in central Oregon, but this latest one from economist Bill Watkins is encouraging.
Watkins is the Director of the California Lutheran University Center for Economic Research.
He says Oregon has seen enormous economic growth in the last year. He found Oregon's economy grew by 8 percent in 2010 to 2011 -- when 3 percent is normal.
Watkins will be delivering his 3rd Quarter Economic Outlook Report Thursday morning at Greg's Grill in Bend. The event is not open to the public.
BendBroadband Agrees to Acquire Chambers Cable in Sunriver
New deal will bring all digital TV & expanded high speed internet services to Sunriver, Crosswater & surrounding areas
Bend, Oregon – July 25, 2012 – BendBroadband, a regional technology leader in broadband, digital cable and communication services, has agreed to purchase the Chambers Cable System which serves Sunriver, Crosswater and the surrounding areas. The transaction is expected to close July 31, 2012. This means customers in the Chambers Cable service area will soon have access to the same technologically advanced, integrated services that BendBroadband provides in other areas.
“We are pleased that we could put this deal together to bring Sunriver into BendBroadband’s larger Central Oregon footprint. Once the technology is upgraded, homeowners and businesses can expect the same high quality service we are known for in the region. The BendBroadband team looks forward to welcoming Sunriver area customers to our company. We will work closely with the Sunriver Owners Association and the Resort while we complete the improvements over the next 14 months. Chambers Cable employees will join us at BendBroadband”, said Amy Tykeson, CEO of BendBroadband.
“Today’s announcement is an important step toward the next generation communications and entertainment system that the community deserves. BendBroadband’s plans align very well with the long term vision that Chambers Cable and Sunriver have been working toward”, added Scott Chambers, CEO of Chambers Communications.
Along with the purchase of the company, BendBroadband will spearhead a major technological upgrade to the Sunriver area, providing a new wave of technical capability to residents and visitors alike. As upgrading occurs, Chambers Cable residential and business customers will be migrated to BendBroadband’s digital cable TV service and Internet offerings. These include high performance Internet (up to 100Mbps), Alpha whole-home DVR, On Demand programming, 107 HD channels and bendbroadband2go TV Everywhere. Residents and businesses will also have access to BendBroadband’s high-reliability, full-featured phone service. Business services include hosted PBX, T-1/PRI and 1Gbps Optical Ethernet.
“We are extremely pleased about BendBroadband’s acquisition of Chambers Cable of Sunriver and what it means for the community of Sunriver. In this ever changing technological age it’s not only important to have a company that can provide the bandwidth, Internet speeds and cable TV channels that meet the present needs; but one that is also committed to staying ahead of the technological curve as well. To that end, BendBroadband affords Sunriver just such an arrangement,” said Bill Peck, General Manager of Sunriver Owners Association. “Connecting Sunriver to a broad spectrum of services through a local and well respected service provider is just one more positive step toward maintaining Sunriver as a premier residential and resort community,” added Peck.
BendBroadband’s Vice President of Technology, Wade Holmes, reports construction is set to begin as soon as possible, “We have design and validation steps to perform before breaking ground, and we’ll start by targeting opportunities that can provide immediate benefit to the highest number of customers.” Holmes goes on to say that the construction will take place over 14 months and be divided into five phases.
Chambers Cable customer care and installation personnel will join BendBroadband with the Sunriver office remaining open during the transition of service.
Questions concerning the Chambers Cable acquisition should be directed to the BendBroadband office at 541-382-5551. Customers in the Sunriver area are asked to continue to contact the Sunriver office for change of service, technical support and billing assistance. Information about BendBroadband’s service offerings can be found at www.bendbroadband.com.
BendBroadband is a family-owned, local company serving Central Oregon since 1955. A leader in the cable and broadband sectors, the company offers an extensive range of broadband, fiber connectivity, cable television and telephone services for commercial and residential customers. Central Oregon facilities include more than 1500 miles of fiber and coax infrastructure and wireless facilities which cover all Central Oregon communities. Services include metropolitan optical Ethernet, T-1/PRI and hosted PBX services. High-speed Internet options provide speeds up to 100 Mbps, with 1 GigE offerings available. The company serves rural customers over a 4G LTE fixed-wireless network, one of a few such broadband networks in the nation. In 2011, the company opened the BendBroadband Vault, a Tier III, SSAE 16, LEED Gold-certified data center with hosted storage for primary site and disaster recovery needs, equipment colocation and managed services.
BendBroadband was among the first companies in the United States to convert to a 100% digital video signal and offers a spectrum of video services, including multi-room DVR and TV Everywhere service to tablets and mobile devices. BendBroadband focuses its corporate contributions and sponsorship efforts on youth, and by supporting an array of arts and entertainment in Central Oregon. In the community, BendBroadband provides extensive local sports coverage, civic programming and local features created and produced by COTV, channel 11 and 611.
For additional information, please visit www.bendbroadband.comand www.bendbroadbandvault.com.
Bend’s own Ashton Eaton will be competing in the marquee event of the 2012 Olympics, the Decathlon.
That's 10 separate track and field events. The winner earns the title of "Worlds Greatest Athlete." Tower Theatre Executive Director Ray Solley says they are thrilled to open their doors so the community can see it unfold. "The idea is to have a place where the community can gather and watch the event, together with a lot of your friends and neighbors, on the big screen to cheer him on and to really be a part of a once in a lifetime Olympic moment."
Solley says since the Decathlon is a 2-day event, what will happen is on the second night NBC will have the final event live with pre-taped previous events to have a whole package in one evening.
The doors will open at 7 p.m. on August 9th and the airing begins at 8 p.m. There will also be special entertainment before the competition begins.
Glennda Bickley is in seriuos condition at St. Charles following a car accident on Lower Bridge Way Tuesday. She was originally in critical condition.
20 year old Marshall Rogers -- a passenger in the Old Mill District accident early Tuesday morning is now also in serious condition. He too was originally in critical condition.
The former COCC anatomy instructor is accused of raping and assaulting two women.
Bray claims the sex was consensual.
One victim was a 22 year old student of Bray's -- the other was a woman who met him on a dating website.
Judge Stephen Tiktin will decide Bray's fate. He opted for a judge rather than a jury trial.
So frustrated workers held an "informational picket" near the hospital Wednesday to draw attention to the fact the 600 workers still don't have a contract.
The two sides have met forty times in the last year.
St. Charles declined to provide hospital officials to disucss the picket, but did say in a statement they respect their caregivers and their right to be represented by a union. They say they continue to bargain in good faith and look forward to meeting at the next bargaining session August 3rd.
Mountain View Hospital in Madras announces they hope to become part of the St. Charles Health System.
Mountain View CEO Jeanie Gentry explains that it's not a merger. "If we were a private corporation, it would be called a merger. But in technical terms, a public agency or organization like we are can't technically merge with a private nonprofit. What we can do it transfer our assets to them."
Gentry says the past several years have been economically difficult for them and with the patient base they serve; they do not see things improving in the future. She adds they believe that becoming part of the St. Charles System, they can maintain and even improve their services.
They are holding two informational open houses about the proposal at the hospital next Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. and Thursday at 11 a.m. The Board members will be available to answer questions. Hospital leaders hope to make the move official by the end of the year.
Grass will not be growing under State Senator Chris Telfer's feet, now that she's not heading to Salem for the next legislative session -or will she?
Telfer says she is mulling over some options; one is staying involved in politics in other ways: "And I'm actually working with some politicians on some future things per the encouragement of Governor Vic Atiyeh, and so I've got lots of options and opportunities, but enjoying some time with my family and my granddaughter and playing a little golf again."
Telfer says she's also merging her business with another CPA firm and that's keeping her very busy. Telfer was also a strong supporter and outspoken advocate in the Oregon Legislature about the need for a four year university in Bend and cheered at the ribbon cutting for the new OSU-Cascades Graduate and Research Center.
A high jobless rates means that some people may be thinking outside the box and are more likely to buy a franchise. Consultant Michael Sipe was a guest on 1110 KBND's "Your Town" Wednesday morning. He's been helping people discover if they want to buy a franchise for more than twenty years. He says there seems to be a big trend towards franchising. "The concept has been around for a long, long time. As much as 30 years ago it was frowned upon, there were a lot of irregularities in the industry, but regulation has been a good thing." He says now that the industry is highly regulated it can be the easiest, safest and quickest way to get into owning a business. Sipe says some people can buy a franchise for 100 thousand dollars or less. Plus, there is financiing and programs available for Veterans. The address for the free consulting website is www.frannet.com Frannet is short for "Franchising Network", a group that started many years ago.
In light of the Colorado shooting last Friday, Deschutes County Sheriff Larry Blanton is urging people to always be aware of their surroundings. He also believes that an off-duty police officer or a well-trained citizen with a gun could've prevented some of the deaths in the Colorado movie theater. Blanton was a guest on 1110 KBND's "Your Town" show Wednesday morning. He says sometimes you have to shoot to injure or even kill. "I believe in the right to bear arms. Frankly - I'm not being critical of the Colorado situation. It's a terrible situation. I wasn't there, don't know what happened. But it's important...don't be a victim." In Deschutes County there are about six thousand people with concealed weapons permits. He says besides a background check every three years they also do random audits of gun holders. Blanton says the sheriff's office hasn't had any significant problems with those who "carry" in Deschutes County.
OSU President Ed Ray was in town to help with the ribbon cutting of the new OSU-Cascades Graduate and Research Center in the Old Mill District. Dr. Ray says he was astounded by the community support to make the university a reality here in Bend. The ribbon cutting not only opened up the new hall; it was a symbolic step to bring more brick and mortar buildings to a four year campus. "You know whether is $25 or $25,000, this is when we need people to demonstrate they're "all in." And the more convincing the case is that people in this community, a large, all of Central Oregon, and 'all in', I think the greater the likelihood of success in the legislature and beyond." Dr. Ray says it's important that the community continue to show their support for the project.
State Representative Jason Conger of Bend was among the speakers at the ribbon cutting. Conger, who is on the Oregon House Education Committee, was key in getting this project off the ground. He says it was a team effort. "Well, I think this is a momentous moment for the entire community and I feel absolutely excited about what this represents, which is an opportunity to continue the work of decades that has been done by people."
Conger spoke about how the ribbon cutting is just the first big and tangible step of showing that Central Oregon truly is behind a four year university in our community. Many local and state leaders were in attendance at the ribbon cutting including OSU-Cascades Advisory Board President Oran Teater and former Bend Mayor Alan Bruckner, who was instrumental in planting the “seed” of a four year institution in Bend.
Former Mayor Alan Bruckner was honored at the ribbon cutting. Bruckner, and his wife, Ann's generous donation made the purchase of the new center possible. But Bruckner says Tuesday's ribbon cutting was just the first big step in making Bend a "college town."
"I’m just excited about it. All the community involvement. And this is really the biggest thing to hit Bend in the 40 years I’ve lived here. I just think having a 4-year university here will just spark this town." Bruckner started planting seeds of having a four year university in Bend a long time ago; and now with the communities support, it's looking more and more like it will become a reality.
As a side note: Alan Bruckner is a "Duck" but like many "Ducks" behind this effort, he believes that higher education in Central Oregon is the goal.
While many dignitaries spoke at the ribbon cutting for the new OSU-Cascades Graduate and Research Center; no one was prouder than Becky Johnson, Vice President of the Bend campus.
Johnson says the new facility in the Old Mill is a real hallmark for the college. "2001 was our very first year, so we were just building a building up on the COCC Campus. So it's actually a COCC Building that we've been renting; so this is our first building that we will actually own. It's our establishment of a location and a footprint. When people come by Colorado and they see that sign for OSU-Cascades, I can't tell you how many people have come up to me and said 'oh I've seen that sign, I've seen your new building, it's so beautiful.' And they can't wait to see the expansion."
Johnson says OSU-Cascades students are very excited about the new building and future buildings, that they have already joined together to create a make-shift "campus store" that sells Beaver clothing and other gear that she hopes will be seen around town.
A Bend man is in critical condition at a Bend hospital after a crash in the Old Mill District early this morning. The crash happened around 4:30 this morning on Columbia Avenue. Police say the driver, Lukas Lood, 20, lost control and hit a bridge, injuring the two men.
Lood was treated and released with non-life threatening injures. Passenger, Marshall Rogers, 20, remains in critical condition at St. Charles. Troy Wiles is an officer with the Bend Police Department. “Ah, definitely alcohol and speed are factor, the rest of the details are being investigated at this point.” The driver, Lukas Lood has been arrested and faces charges of drunk and reckless driving.
Sunriver Police responded to an injury drunk driving crash there. Early Sunday morning, Eric Harrison, 29, of Washington D.C. veered off Abbot Drive in Sunriver, hitting and destroying two trees and damaging some landscaping. Harrison was the only occupant in the vehicle and suffered non-life threatening injuries.
Harrison faces drunk driving charges and could face more as the investigation continues.
In the last decade there's been a big shift in public opinion on gay rights. Is the same true here in Central Oregon? Melissa Adams Gianopoulos the head of the Human Dignity Coalition. She says Central Oregon is becoming more accepting, just like the rest of the country. "The perception that a lot people have is that Central Oregon is very conservative and not supporting of the LGBTQ population, but I think to a certain degree that is a misconception." In May, President Obama declared his support for gay marriage. Polls in the last ten years show the public has gone from overwhelming opposition to gay marriage; to a slight edge in favor of it.
Struggling homeowners can apply for some of these funds starting this Wednesday at noon.
Some of the state's more rural counties didn't use all their allotments from the "Mortgage Payment Assistance Unemployment" program. So anyone who owns their home and is on unemployment can apply.
Go to www.oregonhomeownerhelp.org. As you fill out the form, it will tell you if you qualify.
The program pays mortgages for up to twelve months or $20-thosuand dollars , whichever comes first.
It’s called "United Nations Agenda 21" and it could affect your the rights of people all over the world; but the "agenda" isn't talked about much. Tonight in Redmond, “Agenda 21" is the focus of the Patriots meeting.
Spokesman Bob Perry says the American Policy Center says its a sweeping effort to use environmental protection as a way for governments to control where we work: whether we own a car, the size of our home and how much energy we consume. "But you have to go back to the United Nations Charter and compare it to our Declaration of Independence, ‘cuz in our Declaration of Independence, we have God given rights. The individual has God given rights. That's the basis. But the United Nations and a lot of member nations believe the government gives those rights to people."
"U.N. Agenda 21" is implemented through the EPA, Energy Department, Agriculture Department and other groups. But its never been approved by Congress. The free meeting starts at 6:30 at the Highland Baptist Church in Redmond.
Road work on a new roundabout in Bend will get underway today. Work begins on a new roundabout at Brookswood and Powers in southeast Bend.
The intersection will be closed during the construction so drivers will have to go through a detour through a residential neighborhood off of Brookswood. Bend Transportation Engineering Manager Nick Arnis says this roundabout will improve safety. “With the roundabout we'll be able to control the traffic flow.
It's such a high volume area in the Brookswood and Powers area. The roundabout allows traffic to have a gap for drivers to get in. It also has huge benefits for pedestrians and bicyclists. We'll have a crossing for them now.” Construction is expected to last until October.
The other two roundabouts in Bend under construction include one at Empire and 18th and another at Simpson and Mt. Washington.
Is it better to give an expired drug to someone suffering a heart attack or nothing? Paramedics all over the country are facing that dilemma. Paramedics with the Bend Fire Department decided several months ago expired drugs are better than no drugs.
Tom Wright is the Bend Fire Department's Emergency Medical Services Coordinator. “Drugs usually as they get older don't cause harm, they're just not as effective. We were getting frustrated when talked with agencies that said, we understand your situation but wouldn't tell us what to do. So we met with our legal team and with our insurance company. And the insurance company backed that it’s better to give expired drugs than no drug whatsoever.”
Wright says the drug shortage situation currently is much better than it was six months ago. The shortage is being blamed on manufacturing delays and industry changes.
It’s almost time for the 2012 Deschutes County Fair, and for the second year the X-Treme Airdogs Competition will be a highlight. Michael Allen with the competition says last years' event was so successful, that they are expanding the viewing area.
He says a number of competitors and their dogs will be coming to the fair to compete in vertical and distance jumping in a huge pool from a dock, and timed retrieving rounds, where dogs are timed on how quickly they retrieve a toy. But, the most exciting round is called "Give It A Try." “Well, you're going to be seeing two super splash pools. In those splash pools, one is our "Give It A Try." It means that anybody that want to try this sport of dog jumping can. Last year in Redmond, we had a tremendous turnout. We had 75 new dogs in Redmond. We had a huge crowd; standing room only crows, who loved the sport." Allen says in fact, a Bend dog that won the give it a try ended up placing 12th in the national finals.
He says some of the most talented dogs will be coming from all over the nation to see who can jump the furthest and highest in a huge pool of water. “We broke the unofficial record with a tall chocolate lab from Seattle at 7'4". But I have a Malinois coming from Southern California and that dog's average on X-treme vertical is 8'3"."
The Deschutes County Fair is August 1-5.
The shootings that happened in Aurora Colorado can also affect kids who also hear about the tragedy. Kids might hear their parents talk about it or see reports on TV.
Bend counselor Jane Meyers says to be straight- forward when handling their questions about "why" this happened. "I think the only thing I would say to a child is: you know the person that did that was very, very sick. And sometimes when people get sick, they do terrible things."
She says you can compare it to when you are feeling very sick or have a hurt, and you say or do things just because you are hurt. She says that taking the opportunity to talk to the child about how this can help you think more about positive things is healthy.
The shooting in Aurora, Colorado early this morning is the topic of the day all over the nation, including here in Central Oregon. Bend counselor Jane Meyers says most people have to go through a process to understand and comprehend what happened, and how you use that information can either be helpful to you, or bring out very negative feelings. "The empathy is certainly well placed. But we have to be very vigilant with what we do with our minds and the images that we let into it. Like if you just sit in front of the television and you just marinate, and you see those images over and over again. And you focus on oh it's so awful oh it's so awful, you're going to feed that drama, and you're going to make it even more likely that it will happen again, because it's where you're giving your attention."
Meyers says the concept of "circling the wagons" in a national tragedy is very real, and Americans are very good at it. "You know and it's unfortunate that we need something like that to bring us together. But that is a positive outcome. Our country is one of the best in terms of, we show up when something happens for people."
Hundreds of cyclists will be traveling the Cascade Lakes Highway today for the Cascades Lakes Road Race.
Molly Cogswell Kelley with the Mount Bachelor Sports Education Foundation says it's one of the highlights of the week's events. “On Friday, we'll have close to 700 people riding in the Pacific Power Cascade Lakes Road Race. Saturday, the downtown “Twlight Criterium” will be held. We usually have 10,000-15,000 coming downtown to watch it Saturday night, July 21st, rooting for their favorite rider and its super, super exciting.”
The Cascade Cycling Classic will wrap up on Sunday with the Awbrey Butte Circuit Race that starts and finishes at Summit High School.
U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley and Congressman Peter DeFazio are weighing in on the issue of foreign workers being hired to do forest restoration work here in Central Oregon. The two members of Oregon’s Congressional delegation have urged a federal appeals court to allow the U.S. Department of Labor to close loopholes in an employment program that allowed Oregon companies to use federal funds to import foreign labor for forestry jobs. Thursday, Merkley released figures showing that in 2010 and 2011, one-third of the “labor-intensive service contracts,” which include jobs like forest thinning and fire prevention, issued in the northwest by the U.S. Forest Service went to companies using foreign workers under the H-2B program.
A Redmond man is behind bars, charged with the attempted murder of a Bend woman. Bend Police report they were called to a Bend residence just after midnight Thursday, after a woman claimed she was sexually assaulted in her home.
Police say Jody Brooks, 51, of Redmond allegedly entered the woman's home uninvited; although he knew the woman. Brooks allegedly threatened the woman with a knife, held her against her will, sexually assaulted her and threatened to kill her. The woman was able to break free and run to a neighbor where they called the police.
Officers found Brooks still in the woman's home, and had cut his own wrists and neck, although the cuts were superficial. He was taken to St. Charles for treatment and released to the police. He is lodged in the Deschutes County Jail on various charges including attempted murder, kidnap, sex abuse, burglary and more.
The federal government approves Oregon for a waiver from "No Child Left Behind." This means that the one size fits all legislation approved back in 2007, that increasingly punishes struggling schools, doesn't have to be followed.
Instead, individual states granted this waiver can come up with their own plans with federal approval to improve education in their states.
Ben Cannon, Education Advisor for Governor Kitzhaber believes this waiver will result in positive changes in the state. “These priority or focused schools will see changes in the way the instruction is delivered, time used. There will be changes in leadership of school and changes in supports that are provided for students and families.” Without the waiver, 250 schools in Oregon were slated to be labeled failing and would face punitive fines.
Meanwhile, Bend La Pine School leaders have anticipated approval of the "No Child Left Behind" waiver for awhile.
The "one size fits all" was problematic for many states including Oregon. Lora Nordquist, the Assistant Superintendent of Elementary Education in the Bend La Pine School District says NCLB was hurting many school districts. “It's not just the label failing, but school labeled that faced sanctions. And these penalties increased with AYP scores. We think sanctions hurt the schools instead of support the school district; it just punishes them with a harder hammer so to speak.” Oregon's waiver is the product of months of work of more than 120 education and community leaders in Oregon.
Crews are successful in corralling the wildfires in Central Oregon. Valerie Reed with the Central Oregon Interagency Dispatch says while several small fires have been easily contained to 20 or 30 acres; the Buck Creek Fire has grown slightly: "We have the Buck Creek Fire, which is out by Hampton Butte. And with better mapping, it's at 5,500 acres and it's about 60% contained." Reed says the Baker Canyon Fire is now 95% contained at just over 8300 acres. She says the upcoming forecast is for several hot and dry days; and so crews are on guard for flare ups or winds spreading embers. Fire bosses are issuing a warning to everyone to be extra - careful with cigarettes or campfires while the weather is very hot and dry
An informed panel of journalists, public officials and first amendment lawyers tackled some tough questions about government transparency during this week's City Club meeting. Deschutes County District Attorney Patrick Flaherty was on the panel. He’s had a very public battle with the local newspaper over releasing information. Flaherty says public officials eventually answer to the people: “You should be pretty trusting of the people you elect. You should trust they'll represent your interests. I’m the representative for the State of Oregon in Deschutes County for criminal and juvenile matters. When public records request related to that function, it's important I’ll do the right thing to release the records or not.” Also on the panel were reporters from the Source Weekly and the Bend Bulletin.
Republican Representative Mike McLane of Powell Butte is now the Deputy Leader of the Republican caucus in the Oregon House.
McLane says his new duties will keep him very busy, especially this year. "You're part of the leadership team that sets the agenda for the Republican House caucus. And right now, of course, campaigns are at the forefront and so a lot of the effort is getting out and helping candidates get their message out and help them fund raise and stay encouraged in what is a long election cycle."
McLane says right now, he's just being a good teammate to those Republicans up for election or re-election.
He says the strong leadership coming from Central Oregon bodes well for getting our voice heard in future legislative sessions. Republican Andy Olson of Albany was chosen as the Leader of the House GOP.
Hundreds of Redmond workers laid off when T-Mobile closed its Call Center now qualify for extra benefits.
A labor union that is trying to get call center workers to "organize" successfully got the U.S. Labor Department to rule in the favor of displaced workers. CWA President Madelyn Elder says they were able to prove that when T-Mobile closed call centers and laid off 3300 workers, many of those jobs were outsourced to other countries. "T-Mobile actually opposed CWA and told the Department of Labor that it wasn't going overseas; however we worked with the parent company’s union. The Parent company for T-Mobile is Deutche Telecom. We worked with their union and we found indeed that work was going overseas.” Elder says this means that workers will get two years of jobless benefits, instead of 6 to 9 months of unemployment checks. She says employees will get money for college courses and able to take classes while still getting jobless benefits.
The Obama Administration has approved Oregon’s application for a waiver from key provisions of the “No Child Left Behind Federal Education Law.” The U.S. Department of Education announced the decision Wednesday. Oregon joins 31 other states that have been allowed to waive the federal law's requirement that all students be proficient in math and reading by 2014. Oregon's waiver application emphasized Governor John Kitzhaber's plan to create achievement compacts spelling out the standards that school districts, colleges and universities are expected to achieve. But Oregon's waiver is conditional because the state will ultimately have to come up with a plan to evaluate teachers and administrators based in improvement in their students' performance.
Central Oregon gets a bigger voice in Salem. Wednesday, Republican Representative Mike McLane of Powell Butte was picked as the new House Republican Deputy Leader. That puts him in the leadership pipeline and brings clout to Central Oregon. The move came after a closed-door meeting that lasted all afternoon and also produced an unexpected shakeup of House Republican leadership. Representative Andy Olson, R-Albany, was chosen to lead the party’s caucus, replacing Kevin Cameron of Salem.
McLane’s new post as Deputy Leader will put him in a position to help shape the state’s legislative agenda. McLane, 47, was the only freshman on the powerful budget-writing Ways and Means Committee. He becomes the only lawmaker east of the Cascades to hold a leadership position in the caucus. McLane has also played a key role in supporting the expansion of OAU/Cascades.
St. Charles Health System is considering a plan that would stop all baby deliveries in its Redmond hospital.
The move would mean that Central Oregon, which as recently as 2009 had four hospitals that delivered babies, would now have only two: St. Charles Bend, the area’s largest hospital, and Mountain View Hospital in Madras would continue their birthing services.
Still, the plan is far from definite. Dr. Jeff Absalon, St. Charles’ Chief Physician Officer: “It may make sense, but we want to understand it fully before we take it any further.” He says patient volumes are one of the driving considerations behind the decision. St. Charles Bend has birthed fewer babies in recent years and this year is on track to deliver fewer than 1,500. A few years ago, it had more than 2,000 deliveries.
Historic fires in eastern Oregon are dealing a devastating blow to Oregon cattle ranchers. Besides the cattle that have died in recent wildfires, thousands of scorched acres mean a lot less food for the cattle that lived through the big fires. Oregon Farm Bureau President Barry Bushue was a guest on 1110 KBND's Your Town today. "I think the challenge that farmers have is: 1. If you're a rancher you are losing your winter forage, and if you don't have winter forage a place to go that creates a real problem. These people have spent generations in developing bloodlines and genetic stock to provide their livelihood for them.” Bushue also says that government intervention has made it tough for ranchers. Ranchers say in an attempt to save the Sage Grouse some of the public land has been mismanaged with too much grass and brush left on the rangelands. And that extra fuel has made it more likely for wildfires to rage across the land.
OSU-Cascades Vice President Becky Johnson addressed the work session of the Bend City Council about the campaign progress to bring a four year university to Central Oregon. Johnson said that Bend could be just like Boulder, Colorado if we had a four year university here: “I was surprised to learn that there are only about 20,000 more people in Boulder then there is here in Bend. And they have been recognized over and over for their quality of life. In particular, they have been named in the top ten happiest cities, to 10 brainiest cities, top 10 healthiest cities, top 10 cities for artists. And one of the top 10 cities for raising an outdoor kid." Johnson presented a complete video package to demonstrate the benefits of a four-year university and asked for the City's support when presenting the package to the Board of Higher Education. The Council decided to instruct staff to put together an agenda for what the city could do to help - besides the political support in Salem.
Central Oregon – Lightning storms passed through much of Central Oregon last night, igniting 22 new wildfires today. Firefighters quickly contained most of these, while one new fire grew to 1,000 acres this afternoon.
The Buck Creek Fire, located 17 miles northeast of Hampton, grew quickly today to almost 1,000 acres. The fire is burning in a mix of sagebrush and grass on private and BLM-managed land. Due to recent large fire growth in Eastern Oregon, the potential for more lightning starts and the presence of core sage-grouse habitat, local fire officials are taking action to aggressively suppress this wildfire. Resources on scene include two 20-person handcrews, 8 engines, a helicopter, and a dozer. A heavy airtanker provided support this afternoon. Private landowners with the Post-Paulina Rangeland Protection Association are also providing assistance on this fire.
Firefighters from both federal agencies and local ranches made good progress on the Baker Canyon Fire today. The fire grew a small amount to 8,309 acres and is now 50 percent contained. Fire crews will continue to work on improving the containment line and to keep the fire out of the Trout Creek recreation area. Full containment is expected 7/20/12.
The lightning storm that passed through Central Oregon last night put down over 1,600 lightning strikes and included variable precipitation. Firefighters, lookouts and aerial resources will continue to look for any new starts over the next several days.
Three Oregon teens, two from Central Oregon will face deer and elk poaching charges. The teens arrested are Cole Craig, 18, of Bend, and Spencer Greene, 17, from Sisters and Tyler Mitchell, 17, from Gold Hill in southwest Oregon.
Oregon State Police says the arrests follow an eight month investigation by the OSP Fish and Wildlife Division, the U.S. Forest Service and the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office. The three are charged with unlawfully taking and wasting deer and elk in the Metolius Wildlife Management Unit.
Investigators found locks shot off gates leading to the mule deer winter range habitat and headless mule deer found and their meat wasted.
A house in south Bend sustained about $1500 damage after lightning struck a nearby tree and transferred the strike to the house.
Bend Deputy Fire Chief Larry Medina says lightning damaging a home is not that uncommon; but it only happens a few times a year. And this time the home on Minnetonka Circle was the one, for lack of a better word, chosen. "Basically, its just a matter of physics. So, when lightning runs through the area, it finds an available source, you know whatever is a good conductor. So in some cases, the trees, just due to the height and the moisture content, lend themselves to finding a lightning strike. And then adjacent structures and nearby trees are also vulnerable as that electricity transfers."
Medina says the owner, Roger Oleman, called 911 around 2:15 Wednesday morning after smelling a strange odor about 20 minutes after lightning struck near his house - so he thought. Medina says the lightning actually struck a tree near the house and transferred the energy to the garage of the house causing a small fire to insulation.
The Central Oregon Builders Association says this weekend's “Tour of Homes” puts millions of dollars back into our local economy.
COBA Executive Vice President Tim Knopp says this year about 35 homes make up the tour. There is a lot of variety in the tour; from a $79,000 house in Redmond to luxury homes in Tetherow and Pronghorn. And then there's a "green" home in Sisters. "We've got a great home out in Sisters. It’s got a product called "energy block." It was on the tour last year as a demonstration, basically this is just an energy efficient home. Suntera Energy Block, and a great way to build and Jim Chauncey from Suntera has a great story to tell about this home, so I would encourage you to go to Sisters and see it." The free tour attracts an estimated 10,000 to 20,000 people, it's taking place this weekend and next weekend.
Fast moving rangeland fires don't know how to read a stop sign. Already this fire season, transportation officials have had to close major roads and highways in eastern Oregon several times.
Oregon Department of Transportation's Peter Murphy says in the recent fire north of Madras the fire was moving towards Highway 97, so they had to shut it down for several safety reasons. And it happens a lot with large, wind-whipped fires: “Really its also for the firefighters who are out fighting the fire. We have firefighters with axes over their shoulders literally walking down the highway because its the best way to get to their next place to fight the fire. So that's one reason why we don't want to have cars on the road. And so it’s for the safety of the motorists, and for the crews who are actually fighting the fire.”
The challenges for drivers going through fire zones are low visibility from smoke and added hazards from fire crews navigating equipment on and near the highways.
The 12th year for "Antiques in the Park" in Sisters will have a different twist this year. The event will be a fundraiser for our veterans. Organizer Richard Esterman says there will be antiques for sale, food and entertainment at Sister's Creekside Park. There will also be a special raffle. “Someone will win an American flag and they'll get to choose the veteran's name to go on it and they'll fly it in DC over the Capitol.” Raffle tickets will be sold, and the ticket picked will get the flag. Antiques in the Park runs Saturday 10 to 5 and Sunday 10 to 4 at Creekside Park at Highway 20 and Jefferson Street.
Central Oregon Pediatric Associates sees a majority of Central Oregon children, and so they need to expand.
Construction got underway Monday and will run through October. COPA CEO, Wade Miller says they are doing many things to accommodate their expanding practice. “It's really unusual for a pediatric center to have some long hours and to be open 365 days a year. And the reason we do that is we're children specialists. If a child needs to be seen, they are going to get the bets care. If we're closed on weekends these kids will end up in the ER. If we're going to take care of 85% to 90% of kids need to make a commitment to them.”
During construction, COPA's other offices on the west side of Bend and in Redmond will be utilized more. Some of the improvements slated for the eastside office include an improved lobby area and more room for their electronic health record system.
The Bend Parks Board has voted to spend $100,000 for a study on the silt problem in Mirror Pond. The District's Executive Director Don Horton says the City of Bend would also pay $100,000 for the study. Mirror Pond is in danger of becoming mudflats if nothing is done to dredge the two decades of accumulated silt. The nearby dam slows the water and sediment through the pond causing it to build up.
The accused COCC teacher, Thomas Bray's multiple rape trial will be decided by Judge Stephen Tiktin en lieu of a jury.
Our news partner, News Channel 21 reports that one unidentified alleged victim, a 22- year old woman told the judge that Bray was her anatomy teacher at COCC and went with him and others out for drinks after a mid-term; then went alone with him to his apartment. She says she had sex with Bray, but was so intoxicated that she didn't remember it.
An ex-girlfriend of Brays, who is only known as Ashley, spoke with News Channel 21 to defend him, saying that was not the man she knew. “I literally gasped and say “no way.’ I go ‘No, no way.” But another young Bend woman who met Bray online on “Match.com” says after meeting him face to face and having drinks in a downtown bistro, the pair went back to his apartment where the woman was subject to hours of sexual abuse.
The trial resumes Wednesday.
Central Oregon – Lightning storms passed through much of Central Oregon over the last week, igniting 18 new wildfires. While most of these were quickly contained, firefighters continue to work on two of the new starts.
Firefighters are working with private landowners to contain the Baker Canyon Fire (Incident #233). The fire started on private land three miles southwest of the Hwy 97/197 junction and has burned toward the Wasco/Jefferson County lines. Although the fire was reported on July 14th, the fire burned on private, unprotected land until it made a run to the south onto BLM-managed lands last night. BLM firefighters will focus efforts on containing the southern and western sides of this fire to keep the fire from moving toward the Trout Creek recreation area. At this time the campground and recreation area are not threatened and there are no evacuations.
The Baker Canyon Fire is 8,058 acres, and is burning in a mix of juniper, sagebrush and grass. There is no estimate of containment at this time. Resources on the fire include two engines, a Type I and a Type II helicopter, the Rogue River Hotshot crew, and miscellaneous overhead personnel.
The Lexsfall Fire (Incident #231), located 10 miles northeast of Madras in the Lyle Gap area remains 1680 acres. Fire crews have been working on this fire since it was reported on July 14th, and it is expected to be 100 percent contained tonight at 6 p.m.
Although Central Oregon has experienced precipitation with the lightning storms, conditions continue to get hotter and dryer. People recreating on public land are encouraged to use caution, follow all fire restrictions and extinguish campfires anytime an adult is not watching them. The best method to put out a campfire is to pour water over it, mix the embers with a shovel – making a campfire “soup.” Once the campfire is cooled, feel over the area with the back of the hand. If a fire it too hot to touch, it’s too hot to leave. “Dead out” is cold to the touch.
A motorcyclist sustained serious injuries when he collided with a deer on Highway 26 just north of Madras.
Sgt. Jim Chapman with the Crook County Sheriff's Office reports this morning Gordon Campbell, 52, of Alberta, Canada was riding his Yamaha Road Star with a group of other cyclists when the deer apparently darted in front of him and he could not avoid hitting the animal. Campbell was taken to St. Charles - Bend by Air Life. The group of riders was traveling from Canada and was en route to baker city. Speed is not believed to be a factor in the crash.
The 28th Annual Riverhouse Invitational Golf Tournament raises $3500 for "The Every Kid Fund." Thursday the Riverhouse presented the check to the Deschutes Children's Foundation, who manages the fund. The Every Kid Fund provides scholarships to school aged children in need so they can participate in after-school activities. In a written statement, Riverhouse Owner and Operations Manager Wayne Purcell says "We feel that every kid should have the opportunity to participate in activities, regardless of their financial situation." Each year, about $15,000 in scholarship money is awarded through The Every Kid Fund, benefitting over 200 kids.
Oregon’s unemployment added about 1700 jobs in June, but the unemployment rate remained at 8.5%. In Oregon, hiring has accelerated since March. Employers have added 13,600 jobs in the last four months. The sectors adding the most jobs are trade, transportation, utilities and manufacturing. Government lost about 1200 jobs.
As a taxpayer, how much information do you have the right to know about public employees? That is the topic of Thursday’s City Club of Central Oregon meeting in Bend. City Club spokesperson Stephanie Curtis says it should be a lively discussion. “If you're a public employee, what type of info is for public consumption? Is it your salary, your benefits, your performance?? And if an employee is placed on administrative leave, as a taxpayer do you have the right to know the details and if not, why?” The speakers are Deschutes County D.A. Patrick Flaherty, two newspaper journalists, and a first amendment attorney. The forum starts at 11:30 at St. Charles in Bend.
The dispute between FEMA and Deschutes County over grant money may not be over. As wildfire season hits its full stride, the concept of clearing fire fuel away from our homes becomes more obvious and important.
Deschutes County found a more efficient model to use the grant money and so they used the savings to make the project larger- but FEMA is disagreeing with the creativity, and wants some of the money back. “We went and challenged that and we were able to release some of the funds for the 2010 grant. We still have some issues with a couple of the older grants. We may need to make another trip.” Deschutes County Commissioner Tammy Baney says they are still fighting for their position and don't believe they need to give FEMA a "refund." If the county ultimately must return the money, it will most likely come from the general fund.
750,000 acres have burned in southeast Oregon and Governor Kitzhaber has declared a State of Emergency for that part of the state. Harney and Malheur counties have been hit by wildfires. Cameron Smith, a Policy Advisor for Governor Kitzhaber says the Emergency Declaration will help them to deal with the devastating loss. “From reports on ground from BLM and local fire districts, this was a significant burn. It’s a vast moonscape due to the fires. The long term challenge on ranching and habitat side for wildlife as those restoration efforts continue.” The funding for the emergency is coming from the Farm Bill currently before Congress.
Republican candidate for Secretary of State Knute Buehler has passed the $800,000 fundraising mark.
The money comes from 1300 donors. He is the highest raising Republican Secretary of State candidate in the last twenty years. Recent donations include $5000 from former GOP Gubernatorial candidate Chris Dudley and $50,000 from Nike founder Phil Knight. Buehler will be facing Incumbent Democrat Kate Brown in the November election.
The Deschutes County Sheriff's Office is asking for the public's help regarding a horse found in the Millican Valley area, east of Bend. The horse is an adult male red roan quarter horse. Other than needing some hoof care, he appears to have been well taken care of in the past. Any person with an ownership claim or information on a possible owner should call the Sheriff's Office.
City Manager Eric King and Mayor Jeff Eager are featured speakers at the Chamber of Commerce City Forecast Breakfast this Thursday at the Oxford Hotel. Chamber of Commerce spokesperson Courtney Linville says the City needs your help to prepare for this breakfast. "The City is being really proactive this year. They want the questions in advance and kind of create a 'top 10' list. And you can email those to firstname.lastname@example.org, and just put 'City Forecast Question' in the subject line." Linville says they will cover subjects such as infrastructure, public safety and economic development. The City Forecast Breakfast is Thursday at the Oxford Hotel in downtown Bend. Contact the Bend Chamber of Commerce for reservations.
Some visitors will be in Central Oregon this week learning about leadership and business practices, including the "foreign" concept of community support for non-profits. The Deschutes Economic Alliance and Co-Serve are hosting about 20 students and teachers from Kazakhstan who have been studying business and leadership for the past year. Spokesman Dave Lewis says these formerly communist country students have some very jarring questions. “They'll challenge you, put you on your heels sometimes. 'If your goal is to make money, and you have to, to survive, why do you give back? What’s that all about?' Because that is one of the leadership concepts that's taught as serve and leadership, so it's an exchange process with the business community." Lewis says after the students visit businesses here, they take several hours to write their own mission statements and goals and they have to go back to their own communities and implement them.
Lewis says you have a chance to meet the visitors tonight at a public meet and greet at the Phoenix Restaurant tonight at 5 p.m.
33 of Oregon’s 36 counties will get $102 million in Timber Payments in the next year. Congress extended the payments for another year, but U.S. Oregon Senator Ron Wyden says these payments will eventually stop, and counties must be prepared to replace the funding so they can pay for their schools and roads. “So if we do those two things, if we focus first on getting people back in the woods and second, zero in on getting more friends in the congress on both sides of the aisle on how to protect the resource dependent communities.”
Wyden says he got support from across the aisle on past timber payment legislation. Going forward, he says we have to come up with long-term solutions to create more jobs in the woods.
Right now middle and high school students in Warm Springs have to get up early to catch a bus to attend school in Madras, 20 miles away. When the new K-8 school just approved is built by the fall of 2014, middle school students will go to school in Warm Springs. But high school students will still go to Madras high.
So that's why Tribal leaders are looking at possibly opening a charter high school. 509-J School Board Member Laurie Danzuka: “It is still in the early beginning stages. We have a team working on this. We’re looking at once we vacate the older school, could we possibly use that as the high school.” Currently, many Warm Springs High School students, especially if they play sports, must be up by 5 a.m. to catch buses and don't return home until after 7 p.m.
A pilot suffers minor injuries when his glider crashes on Forest Service Road 4603 near Tumalo Falls. John Bentley, 52, of Bend says he had been flying for about an hour when he experienced an irrecoverable loss of lift west of Bend and attempted to land on the road.
Deputy Liam Katt with the Deschutes County Sheriff says the glider's 66 foot wingspan clipped a small tree as it crashed.
Bentley declined any medical attention at the scene. The FAA and NTSB were notified of the crash and representatives of both agencies spoke with Bentley before the glider was removed from the scene. Deputy Katt says Bentley is an experienced pilot with about 30 years of flying gliders and power aircraft.
Two women hikers are rescued in the Three Sisters Wilderness after wandering off a trail and becoming disoriented, due to the snow drifts in the area. Melissa Keal, 21, of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Kendra Seblett, 21, of Elkview, West Virginia called 911 on their cell phones just before 4 p-m Friday when they realized they were lost. About seven members of the Deschutes County Search and Rescue mobilized and found the pair about three quarters of a mile southeast of Moraine Lake around 7:30 Friday night. SAR was able to locate the pair by the pings from their cell phones.
SAR reminds everyone who wants to hike or recreate in the backcountry to always carry essential items including extra food and water, a compass or GPS, extra clothing and other items.
Greg Walden: All levels of government need to be flexible in responding to wildfires
Walden announces that, at his urging, Farm Service Agency will be flexible in locating Conservation Reserve Program lands where ranchers can relocate their cattle for emergency grazing
WASHINGTON, D.C. — In the middle of a swing through four counties in Eastern Oregon, Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.) offered the following comments:
“As Oregon faces the largest wildfires in nearly 150 years--and ranchers, residents, and firefighters are scrambling to save their communities, livestock, and range--I’ve been in close touch with local, state, and federal officials, as well as citizens and ranchers from the affected areas in Harney and Malheur counties. I've encouraged all levels of government to be flexible and responsive to the needs of communities, families, and businesses.
“This morning, at a townhall meeting I held in Ontario, a representative from the BLM briefed the community further on the situation. They told us the moisture levels of the sagebrush and grass fuel in the affected areas is 40-50% of normal for this time of year. They also told us that the recovery time for the affected areas is at least two years. These fires will have a major impact on the economy of southeastern Oregon over the long-term.
“Today we did receive a little bit of good news for the ranchers whose cattle are being impacted by the wildfires. Yesterday I called and asked the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) to be flexible in locating private farmlands in nearby counties in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) where ranchers can relocate their cattle for emergency grazing. The USDA has just announced that they have done so.
“I’ll keep working on encouraging all levels of government to be creative and flexible in finding solutions.
“Public meetings will be held in Jordan Valley tonight and in McDermitt, Nevada, tomorrow. I have a previously-scheduled townhall in Enterprise tonight, but a representative from my office will attend the meeting in Jordan Valley on my behalf.
“Please keep the firefighters and those in the impacted communities in your thoughts and prayers.”
Rep. Walden held public events in Malheur, Baker, Union, and Wallowa counties today as part of a previously-scheduled visit.
July 13, 2012
Tim Raphael, 503-689-6117
Amy Wojcicki, 503-689-5324
Governor Kitzhaber Statement on Wildfires in Southeastern Oregon
(Portland, OR) —
Governor Kitzhaber released the following statement on the wildfires in Southeastern Oregon:
“This year's wildfire season has now hit our state, with some of the nation's largest fires affecting people, wild animals and livestock, and land in southeastern Oregon, including the communities of Frenchglen, Rome and Jordan Valley and other areas of Harney and Malheur counties. I want to thank everyone responding to the fires, including local citizens and the BLM for their firefighting efforts and the relief organizations for their community response and aid efforts. I am deeply concerned with both the immediate impacts of the fire and with the long-term effects on this part of Oregon.”
The largest wildfire in Oregon has now grown to 515,000 acres in size, but fire crews are making progress. Its now 50% contained. Its in southeastern Oregon near the Oregon-Nevada border. Meantime, near Burns, the 55,000 acre Miller Homestead Fire recently exploded to 110,000 acres and evacuations were ordered. The community of Frenchglen, residents of South Harney Lake, livestock, grazing allotments, wildlife and habitat continue to be affected. Today, over 400 personnel, helicopters, air tankers, engines, dozers and water tenders are working there to re-establish control lines.
Two 16-year-old boys have been arrested in a destructive vandalism spree at Mountain View High School late last month. Police say one of the teens taken into custody last Sunday was a former student at the school; and both now attend alternative high schools. Around 1 a.m. on Thursday, June 28th, the pair was caught on surveillance video damaging several vending machines and stealing merchandise from them. "What he just did was $700 breaking the glass front. They are in on this together. Burglary is one crime they can be charged with. Criminal mischief is also a big charge (charges) due to the value." Bend Police Officer Ashley Volz spoke with our news partner News Channel 21 as part of a "crime stoppers" segment.
People in and near Frenchglen had to leave their homes and spend the night in burns after a fast moving wildfire doubled in size in just one day. The "Miller Homestead Fire" now sits at 110,000 acres, twice the size from Wednesday’s 55,000 acres. Fire crews are battling winds, low humidity, and 100 degree heat. People in the hamlet of Frenchglen were evacuated along with people near Harney Lake. They were told to go to the Days Inn in Burns to get help with food and lodging from the Red Cross. Containment has been reduced from 30% on Wednesday to 10% today. Meanwhile, more than 300 firefighters continue to battle the 455,000-acre (more than 700-square-mile) long draw fire, 10 miles west of Basque on the BLM’s Vale District.
The Central Oregon Health Council just released its yearly report card. The council grades Deschutes, Crook and Jefferson counties in several health areas. Thursday researchers said having the data allows them to know what to celebrate, and what needs more work. The numbers show Deschutes County ranks highest in the region, followed by Crook and Jefferson counties. When it comes to living the longest, in Deschutes County, the average life expectancy is 81, Crook County is 80 and Jefferson County is 75. The top killer in all three counties is cancer. When it comes to childhood poverty, one in five kids in Deschutes County are in such tough times, while the figure is one in four in Crook County, and one in three in Jefferson County.
In Salem, 17 people were temporarily homeless as an apartment fire ripped through their complex. The Associated Press is reporting that a fire last night heavily damaged the Salem apartment building, displacing 17 tenants. No injuries were reported. The fire was reported just before 7 p.m. at the Bridgewest Apartments. Residents say the fire appeared to start on the building's lower level and spread to the upper units. The cause of the blaze is under investigation.
Once again, its time for the Tour des Chutes, a fundraising cycling event for cancer education, awareness, care and treatment. While the main event is Saturday; this past Wednesday and Thursday, some short "Cycle Pub" rides were held around Bend. The big ride featuring distances from 7-100 miles begins and ends at High Lakes Elementary School on Bend's west side beginning at 5:30 a.m.
Gary Bonacker, founder of the ride, came up with the idea in 2005 after beating a bout with brain cancer. He said he didn't want to be known as "Gary the cancer guy." He loved to ride his bike, so he wanted to do something meaningful to fight cancer. The Tour des Chutes is a family friendly ride and there will be festivities all day long at High Lakes Elementary. Registration is $55 a person and there is a family rate.
The La Pine Firefighter Paramedics and La Pine Rural Fire Protection Sistrict have agreed to a three year contract that pleases everyone. La Pine Fire Chief Mike Supkis says it was a very long process, but they wanted to make sure it was a very strong contract. "It was a long process, and I have to say it wasn't an easy process. Anything good is difficult. But it wasn't a hostile process. Both sides worked really hard on this. It took us 18 months; both the District and the firefighters come together on many issues. They really went through the old agreement with a fine toothed comb and really created a foundation for the next decade, if not more of how the labor-management relationships going to work in this Fire District." Supkis says that there will be no cost of living adjustments in the first two years and the third year is limited to up to 3%; but firefighters will maintain their current benefits package, including updating health and wellness provisions. There are 21 full time firefighter paramedics covered under this agreement.
33 of Oregon’s 36 counties will get $102 million in Timber Payments in the next year. Congress extended the payments for another year, but U.S. Oregon Senator Ron Wyden says these payments will eventually stop, and counties must be prepared to replace the funding so they can pay for their schools and roads. “So if we do those two things, if we focus first on getting people back in the woods and second, zero in on getting more friends in the Congress on both sides of the aisle on how to protect the resource dependent communities.”
Wyden says he got support from across the aisle on past Timber Payment legislation. Going forward, he says we have to come up with long term solutions to create more jobs in the woods.
Six Central Oregon nonprofits have received grants totaling more than $111,000 from the Meyer Memorial Trust.
• Abilitree in Bend was awarded $24,490 to provide training for people with disabilities.
• The Latino Community Association in Bend was awarded $24,500 to provide self-sufficiency services for the immigrant Latino community.
• The Nature of Words in Bend got $20,000 to support its Literary Arts Program.
• St. Vincent de Paul in Bend was awarded $25,000 to allow for donors to contribute funds electronically.
• Rising Stars Preschool in La Pine was awarded $11,250 to support its program that serves lower-income families in Deschutes County.
• The Education Foundation in Bend got $6,000 for strategic and fund development planning.
State Representative Jason Conger says he's heard from many constituents who are concerned that their children may fall prey to online predators. So, to address the problem, Conger is hosting a special Town Hall next week, on Thursday (July 19th). "And the really important thing is, its oriented around how people can protect themselves from online predators. And I'm hosting it, but the meat of it is provided by the people who will be there and that the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office, Redmond Police Dept., National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, The Kids Center, Bend La Pine School District, Cascade Youth and Family and the Mountain Star Family Relief Nursery." The Town Hall is set for next Thursday, July 19th at 5:30 at Pilot Butte Middle School on Neff Road in Bend.
The Bend "Balloon Man" will take to the skies again this Saturday, relaxing on his lawn-chair packed with enough balloons to help him float for miles. He hopes to float for at least 13.5 hours and 250 miles to get in the Guinness Book of World Records. So- why does Kent Couch bring a BB gun with him? " I use the Daisy Red Rider; use it to shoot the balloons down. Don't want to go up to 25,000, up and down up and down.” But couch won't be alone on the 6-by-7-foot balloon-mobile; he's taking along Capt. Fareed Lafta, of Dubai, an Iraqi pilot who set a Guinness Book World Record for skydiving over Mount Everest. The public is invited to watch the men prepare for takeoff Saturday at Couch's Stop & Go Station at the corner of Highway 20 and Northeast 27th Street in Bend. Takeoff is scheduled for 10 a.m.
Deschutes County Republicans are gearing up for the upcoming election season. They are moving into a new headquarters on NE 3rd Street in Bend near Murray and Holt. Mark Mosley with the local Republican Party says the new facility will be “Republican Central” for the upcoming November elections. “Some of our politicians will be housed down here. People will make phone calls and coordinate efforts. That’s kind of our centralized headquarters going forward for all of our candidates for Deschutes County. The new location is at 519 NE 3rd Street next to the Murray and Holt Car dealership.
Deschutes County Democrats are gearing up for the upcoming election season as well. They just moved into their new facility in downtown Bend on Bond Street, between Oregon and Minnesota. Laurie Gould with Deschutes Democrats says it will be the party's main headquarters. “It'll be kind of the home base for all local Democratic candidates. Campaigns can have staff work there, if they need to make calls or stuff envelopes. We’ll also be keeping the office open to register voters and to give our lawn signs. The new Democratic Headquarters is 922 NW Bond in the heart of downtown.
Hotter, windy weather challenged firefighters yesterday on several large rangeland fires in eastern Oregon. One of the largest estimated at 50,000 acres after it jumped and closed a highway into Nevada. The Bureau of Land Management's Vale District reported multiple lightning strikes around 6 p.m. Sunday. The Long Draw Fire, located about 20 miles south of Burns Junction, grew to an estimated 450,000 acres by Wednesday afternoon as erratic winds pushed the fire over control lines and forced the evacuation of Oregon Department of Transportation Basque Station located on U.S. Highway 95. As the fire spread Monday toward the Basque Station Facility, crews from control lines surrounding the station used fire to burn the fuels as the main fire approached the facility. The structure was not lost.
Voters in Warm Springs approved a new K through 8th grade school in their second attempt to approve a school referendum. The Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs approved the measure on Tuesday by the same percentage as in May, about 77%, but in May, they didn't have the required one third of all Tribal members voting. This time they did. 509-J School Board Member Laurie Danzuka is relieved. “Oh, it means we're going to have a safe school environment. Our kids deserve that. Our current building is really an old building. A lot of modulars are being used, so there's a lot of down time between classes. The kids also have to cross the street for the cafeteria. That's always an issue. Plus, the current building is located along Highway 26. The school district plans to open the new school in the fall of 2014.
Knute Buehler of Bend says he would use the Secretary of State's Office as more of a vehicle to help small business. Buehler is running as the Republican candidate for the State Office. He wants to present an annual agency report card to the Oregon Legislature rating each state agency. “We're gonna have each state agency get a grade A to F on responsiveness, including timeliness, quality and assistance with compliance, and how they help small businesses deal with red tape that small business encounters.”
Buhler says he would like to reorganize the Corporation Division and create a small business navigator. “The first idea is to have a business navigator. What I hear from small businesses across the state is a lack of help dealing with Salem, things like licensing fees, policies. They feel cut lose and don't have that advocate.” Knute Buehler is an orthopedic surgeon here in Bend. He will be facing the current Secretary of State Democrat Kate Brown, in November.
13 year old Dawson Cockman from Bend is crowned regional champion of the 200 meter dash at the Hershey’s Track and Field Games in Eugene. Cockman ran the 200 in 24.88 seconds, beating out boys older than him. Rich Eckman, Oregon State Chairman of Hershey's Track and Field Games says they weren't sure how Dawson would fare in the older age group, but he didn't disappoint: "It was exciting to watch Dawson compete. He’s a great athlete; he's a fierce competitor, and we weren't sure what to expect because Dawson went up an age level. He was in the 11 & 12 year olds and as a 12 year old, he won. So this year he is 13 competing in the 13 and 14 year old, so he is in the bottom part of the age group. He ran a great race and we weren't sure how that tome would hold up n the rest of the region, but it was the best in the Northwest Region, so very exciting." Dawson's time was compared to other scores in Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Washington and Alberta and British Columbia, Canada. Eckman says that Dawson now heads to Hershey, Pennsylvania to compete in the Hershey’s Track and Field Games North American finals on August 4th.
Taking care of an invalid family member is a very physically and emotionally stressful job and finding time for a vacation or short break can be difficult. An organization, "Visiting Angels," provides experienced caregivers who can step in to give you a little respite. Shannon Bennett with "Visiting Angels" says it's easy to get burned out with the stress of caring for another person. "You can get ill or injure yourself. So really, it's best if you can have a scheduled person to come in to relieve you. So if you could take a couple days off a week, and then you're able to be that family member again, you're not the caregiver, you can step away from that situation and just really be that spouse or child. Which is very important." Bennett says they can even help out if your family member is already in an assisted living place or nursing home. For more information about "Visiting Angels," we have a link to their website on our "links" page here.
Fire bosses warn that more lightning storms are on the horizon, and may spark some local fires. More storms are expected starting Thursday and should continue through the weekend. The last storm brought about 1000 lightning strikes in Central Oregon. Kristen Bowles with the Central Oregon Interagency Dispatch Center says are grasses are still pretty green so putting out fires is relatively easy: "Most of those are single lightning strike trees, small brush fires. But most were small single strike snag trees that were burning." Most of the recent lightning activity was center around sisters and throughout the Ochoco National Forest.
It was a big birthday party for Hospice of Redmond. The local hospice center is 30 years old. A special party to mark the event and say "thank-you" to the community was held today in Redmond. Hospice of Redmond Executive Director Becky Bryant explains Hospice was started a little more than 30 years ago as a way to keep people in their homes as they lived out their final days. "It was started actually in England, by a lady there. She found the people she was taking care of were in a very sterile environment, and she thought that most people would rather be taken care of in their own home. So it was started there, and then came over here. The first Hospice was in Vale and then moved to the west coast." Bryant says about 95% of their clients are on Medicare, and that its a benefit paid for through Medicare benefits.
Fire destroyed three of the nine units at a northwest Bend apartment on 1st Street, early this morning.
Nine people are without housing following the fire, and that's when the American Red Cross stepped in.
Bob Pohly with the Red Cross says for the nine people affected, the loss was extensive: “They've lost everything. They literally escaped with their bathrobes. No one had renters insurance. It doesn't cost a lot. So they're going to have to rebuild from scratch. Those without renters insurance.” It's believed a BBQ left on started the fire on a deck that then quickly spread to the rest of the apartment complex. It caused $800,000 in building damage and $300,000 in damage to people's belongings.
The onset of high wildfire danger has prompted Oregon Department of Forestry to tighten public fire prevention restrictions in its Central Oregon District. Effective at 6 a.m. on Wednesday.
These restrictions apply to private and non-federal public forestlands in 12 counties including Harney, Morrow, Grant, Wheeler, Gilliam, Hood River, Wasco, Deschutes, Crook and Jefferson, along with small portions of Umatilla and Lake counties.
Our news partner, News Channel 21, says District Forester George Ponte said the recent hot, dry weather is drying out the vegetation quickly, and as a result, fire danger levels have increased dramatically.
"We have had several significant lightning-sparked fires, in recent days and we need the public's help in preventing any human-caused fires," Ponte said.
"Regulated use" places the following restrictions on activities in the forest:
1. Smoking is prohibited while traveling, except in vehicles on improved roads.
2. Open fires are prohibited, including campfires, charcoal fires, cooking fires and warming fires, except in designated areas. Portable cooking stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels are allowed. Open fires are allowed if conducted in compliance with a valid Burning Permit.
3. Chainsaw use is prohibited between 1 p.m. and 8 p.m. Chainsaw use is permitted at all other hours, if the following firefighting equipment is present with each operating saw: one ax, one shovel, and one 8 oz. or larger fire extinguisher. In addition, a fire watch is required at least one hour following the use of each saw.
4. Use of motor vehicles, including motorcycles and all terrain vehicles, is prohibited, except on improved roads and except for use by a landowner and employees of the landowner on their own land while conducting activities associated with their livelihood.
5. Possession of the following firefighting equipment is required while traveling in a motorized vehicle in the forest (except on federal and state highways, county roads and driveways): one shovel and one gallon of water or one 2-Â1/2 lb. or larger fire extinguisher, except all-terrain vehicles and motorcycles which must be equipped with an approved spark arrestor in good working condition.
6. Use of fireworks is prohibited.
7. Cutting, grinding and welding of metal is prohibited between 1 p.m. and 8 p.m. At all other times the area is to be cleared of flammable vegetation and the following fire equipment is required: one ax, one shovel, and one 2 -Â1/2 lb. or larger fire extinguisher in good working order.
8. Mowing of dried grass with power-driven equipment is prohibited between the hours of 10 a.m. and 8 p.m., except for the commercial culture and harvest of agricultural crops.
9. Blasting is prohibited.
10. Any electric fence controller in use shall be: 1) Listed by a nationally recognized testing laboratory or be certified by the Department of Consumer and Business Services; and 2) Operated in compliance with manufacturer's instructions.
These restrictions apply to private and non-federal public lands protected by the Department of Forestry. Visitors to National Forest and Bureau of Land Management lands should check with the U.S. Forest Service or BLM to see which fire safety restrictions apply.
Heavy smoke and visible flames in an outbuilding required that three Redmond Fire engines being called to the scene. It was just after 5 p.m. Tuesday when Redmond Fire responded to the fire and found a fully engulfed shop on the property on NE 5th Street. Crews were able to get the fire under control before it spread to nearby structures. The estimated loss is about $200,000 to the building and its contents. The cause of the fire is under investigation. The occupants of the structure say they are missing a dog that was with them. His name is "Langston" and is a heeler. if you see him, call 541-480-0267.
People who work outdoors have to take special care during the very hot days of summer. Here in Central Oregon, the number of excessively hot days are fewer than in other parts of the nation, and most of us are not acclimated to sizzling temps. Penny Wolf-McCormick with the Oregon Occupational Safety and Health Division (OSHA) says business owners must take into account the work conditions. "When you're out working, and you're working in the sun, and you're working on concrete, where you're also working with radiant heat, a lot of construction workers, we're talking about construction; they're ale wearing additional personal protective equipment. They might have a hard hat on or a vest, their heavy boots or gloves. And all that equipment can add additional stress." McCormick says outdoor workers must have frequent breaks in the shade, and have cool water or non-caffeinated drinks available. She says if you see warning signs of heat related illness, such as being nauseous, light headed and the sweating stops, get medical help immediately.
The business occupancy rate in downtown Bend is now at 94%, and that's a record says Downtown Bend Business Association's Chuck Arnold. Arnold says this is the culmination of 11 consecutive quarters of growth being over 90% occupancy. He says downtown Bend has some attractive features that really draws in businesses and visitors. “I think it is a gathering place for the community. I think the vent absolutely add to it. But really our strength is the kind of quaintness of our downtown, the bones of it, if you will. The beauty of it, and the strength of the businesses that are established here. People want to be a part of that kind of community and have their business located next to or adjacent to a very successful business in downtown." Arnold says the new businesses include a fine art gallery, a new your Jewish deli, a mortgage company, an Oregon based artisan gift shop and a paint-your-own- pottery studio.
The Crook County man fighting the plague at St Charles in Bend is doing much better. Paul Gaylord was in critical condition for weeks, after being bitten by a cat with the plague. The Health Department has confirmed through lab results, the cat did have the plague. Gaylord is now in fair condition at St. Charles. Early in his hospitalization, doctors feared Gaylord may not pull through, but he is now doing much better.
A Salem area firefighter remains in critical condition at St. Charles in Bend after an early morning car accident near Prineville. Oregon State Police believe a Salem area firefighter driving a van with ten other firefighters in it fell asleep at the wheel. The van traveling on Highway 126, hit a semi. All ten firefighters were taken to the hospital, but nine were treated and released. Marcelino Romero, 39, was taken to St Charles where he is in critical condition. Rod Nichols with the Department of Forestry says the crew from the Salem area was on its way to fight a wildfire. “They're basically on call the whole season. In Oregon, already this season there hasn't been a lot of activity; but we have had crews on calls fighting fires in Oregon and other states, even though we haven't had al lot of fires. The crews have logged quite a few road miles up until this unfortunate incident.” The crews were en route to assist firefighting efforts at the Brilley Mountain Fire near John Day.
Deschutes County Road Crews will be paving the Powell Butte Highway on Wednesday and Thursday. The work will go from the Deschutes County line to mile marker 13. Road work will start at 7 a.m. and wrap up at 6 p.m. both days. A pilot car will be guiding traffic, but drivers should expect temporary traffic delays.
A tiny bit of the sting's been taken out of being jobless, in Oregon. The state has raised the weekly unemployment benefits to a maximum of $524. That's up about 3%. Craig Spivey of the Employment Department says the benefit amounts are set as a percentage of the average paycheck. The higher benefits apply only to people who file a claim after July first, and not to those who are already on unemployment.
Wednesday, the U.S. House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on repealing the Affordable Care Act. Oregon Congressman Greg Walden has said he supports the move. “This needs to be replaced. It needs to be repealed. I've opposed this law from the beginning. I don't believe it’s going to do what it's supposed to do. It empowers bureaucrats to make the decision for us.” But, Dave Stranahan with Central Oregon Jobs with Justice is holding a forum in downtown Bend, asking for opponents to give the act a chance to work. “essentially we hope to say to Representative Walden, hold off on repealing the Affordable Care Act. Let's see what we can do to make it better. And the last word is we have the opportunity and the mechanism for healthcare for all Oregonians, and we want people to know that.” Stranahan says the Affordable Care Act is not perfect, but allows more people to be covered. He wants to see states to be able to come up with their own individual’s plans to reform healthcare.
A van carrying ten firefighters crashes into a semi truck early this morning, left ten of the van's occupants injured, one critically. Oregon State Police say the van's driver had fallen asleep. The crash occurred around 2 a.m. on Hwy 126 west of Prineville. The van drifted into the westbound lane and crashed into a truck. The drivers of the truck and van were not injured. The firefighters were headed to the John Day area to assist efforts at a wildfire.
A new report from a consumer group shows that some elderly and other vulnerable homeowners are losing their homes because they owe as little as $400 in back taxes. Local governments can seize and sell a home if the owner falls behind on property taxes and fees. Bend financial advisor Troy Reinhart says there is probably more fear than substance to this report. “If you are truly in poverty there are safety nets out there for you- if you are just a deadbeat, you may lose your house." For example; one safety net program in Oregon allows elderly people to stay in their homes and defer the property taxes until their home is sold when they pass away. Reinhart also says that Deschutes County doesn't go after people until they are at least 2 years behind on taxes and owe a lot of money.
A Bend financial advisor says consumer credit use is going up again, and that could be a bullish sign for the economy. Troy Reinhart with Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management says some people seem to be trading their bad debt for "good" debt. "We’re seeing some of the bad debt go away, some of the excess credit card debt. We're seeing lots of people go out and buy cars, so that telling us that despite what we're seeing in the "consumer confidence" numbers; they are feeling more confident that they'll keep their jobs, that they'll be able to make their car payment, can qualify for that car payment." A recent report shows that overall consumer debt is at a 2 1/2 year high and that consumer credit card use is at a five year high. Reinhart says another bullish sign is that small business loans just went up to an all time high. He says that's a leading economic indicator, which could mean that business is going to be up in 6 to 8 months.
When Oregon temperatures climb into the 90s and even the 100s, people are not acclimated to the heat and that can cause serious problems. Oregon OSHA officials say workers run the risk of developing a heat-related illness when physical exertion is combined with high temperatures and high humidity. Employers and workers should be familiar with some of the common signs of heat exhaustion. State officials say a person overcome with heat exhaustion will still sweat but may experience extreme fatigue, nausea, lightheadedness, or a headache. The illness could progress to heat stroke, and possibly even death. From 2007 through 2011, 38 people received benefits through Oregon's Workers' Compensation System for heat-related illnesses.
Bend has received recent recognition from national publications as a premier destination for beer tourists. This Thursday, the city will celebrate the local beer culture with the "Fermentation Celebration." Noelle Fredland, Marketing Director of the Old Mill District, says the event will give residents and tourists a chance to sample some of the best micro-brews bend has to offer. "It is probably best described as a brewery walk through the Old Mill District where we pair our local brews with specific restaurants and retailers. You can come down, it is $15 and you get 9 drink tickets which is basically good for 3 full beers." One local brew, which will be featured, Black Butte Porter from Deschutes Brewery, was recently listed by the Home Brewers Association of America as the “21st Best Micro Brew” in the country. Numerous options will be available to take people home safe and sound after the event including the bike cab and sober dudes.
If the intersection of 18th and Empire is part of your daily commute, your travel time will be getting a bit longer starting Wednesday. A roundabout is being built at the intersection and construction is expected to close the intersection for close to three months. Nick Arnis, Transportation Manager City of Bend, says the roundabout will make the intersection safer. “We know that with a roundabout and getting kinda people cued up and slowing down around that intersection those crashes will mostly be eliminated." This construction is part of a $30 million bond measure, which will fund eight different projects around the Bend area to address ongoing congestion and safety issues. One of the detours is through a residential area, so motorists are reminded to watch their speed and to be mindful of children in the road.
Each year, countless animals die because they are left in cars on warm, not just hot days. Most people don't realize how quickly the temperature in a car rises, making even a five-minute errand a dangerous situation for a pet left in a parked car.
Doctor René Carlson, President of the American Veterinary Medical Association: “When it comes to your pet's safety and health, every minute counts. In just ten minutes, the temperature inside a car can rise 19 degrees. Even if it's 'only' 75 out, the temperature in the car can go up to 94 degrees. In another ten minutes, you're looking at a dangerous 104. And, cracking windows does not help. Situations like this leave your pet in danger of heat stroke, a life-threatening condition if left untreated by a veterinarian.”
Be sure to leave your pet at home except for when you need to have them in the car. For more about what you can do to be sure your pet stays safe and beats the summer heat, visit: www.myveterinarian.com.
It’s just a matter of time before Central Oregon will be stuck by a major wildfire and being prepared in an emergency can help relieve some of the stress that is caused from the emergency. Karen Burns, with the Humane Society of Central Oregon says your pets feel your stress and, should you be evacuated because of wildfire or some other reason, having an emergency plan can help keep everyone more calm. "A lot of evacuation shelters don't accept pets. So having a plan in advance of where you ca go, where your animals will be accepted. At the shelter here we have a list of hotels that allow animals. Or out of town relatives, ask them 'would you be willing to let us stay?' or something like that, just to have plane of where you can go and not be separated from your animals." Burns says to put a kit together with several days of food, medications, litter, blankets, bowls or anything else your pet may need is a great idea. You can get more tips at the Humane Society of Central Oregon website: www.hsco.org.
The Oregon Department of Transportation has begun a large construction project on Highway 372 , also known as Century Drive. Century Drive was last paved in 1991; and now there are extensive ruts and cracking. ODOT is now working a construction project that will make the heavily used road a much smoother ride. There are several aspects to this project, from a multi-use trail near Forest Road 41 to replacing guardrails and re-pavement of almost the entire road. ODOT officials warn you that there will be many periods of traffic slowdown or stoppage to accommodate the construction equipment. There will be flaggers in place that both cyclists and drivers should watch for and heed the detours.
Oregon’s U.S. Senator Ron Wyden is glad the U.S. Supreme Court did not throw out the Affordable Care Act. But he also believes states should have more of a say in what form healthcare reform takes in each state.
Senator Wyden says he's introduced some new legislation that will help. “I was able to get in the law a provision that states they could waive out of law and set up its own approach. Unfortunately, it doesn't take effect until 2017. So I’ve introduced bipartisan legislation that would start in 2014, it would allow states to have their own approach and I’m optimistic it will have bipartisan support in Congress.” Wyden says to go back to allowing insurance companies to discriminate against those with pre-existing conditions, basically goes back to a system that serves the healthy and wealthy.
Bend voters will decide in November whether to support a $29 million Bend Parks and Rec Bond Measure.
The levy would help complete the Deschutes River Trail from Tumalo to Sunriver. It would also add more soccer fields to Pine Nursery Park in northeast Bend. Erik Tobiason, the Treasurer for Oregon Rush Soccer Club says the club welcomes the opportunity to grow the area's soccer fields with Bend Parks and Rec. “I think we have the same type of goal; providing quality lifestyle for kids. Our programs work well together. We’re at the table working to provide more sports fields. It’s a great way to grow the partnership. It’s a great project so far.” The additional fields will also help Oregon Rush grow its popular "Bend Premier Cup" that currently brings about a million dollars of economic development to the area every August.
Your computer may be acting funny today; and access to the Internet could be lost thanks to a malicious software that your computer may have, and you don't even know it. Dallas Standly, a member of the Geek Squad at Best Buy in Bend tells our news partner, News Channel 21 that malware can be easily installed in your computer without your knowledge. And if you don't have a good virus protection program, your computer could be affected. "They're going to start kind of systematically shutting down computers that are still kind of spreading this particular kind of malware. It won't be all types of malware, but this one, that affecting that type of D.N.S. Server, will be taken off the Internet." Just under 250,000 computers are expected to lose their Internet connection to the World Wide Web today. Symptoms include a super slowdown or your computer acting in ways you don't want it to. You can check to see if your computer is infected by visiting: www.DNS-OK.us. If your computer is infected, a red image will appear with instructions to remove the malware.
Oregon U.S. Senator Ron Wyden is pushing for Congress to renew the "Violence Against Women Act " that is slated to expire soon. The Senate passed their version with strong bi-partisan support. But the House Bill contains provisions affecting the treatment of Native American and gay victims of abuse that the White House threatened to veto. Senator Wyden is disturbed to see lawmakers playing politics on what should be a bipartisan issue. “The Senate has passed it, with strong support of Democrats and Republicans. Now in the House discussion, some want a social proxy against gay folks not a time to play politics. Got to get the law renewed especially for rural Oregon. This supplies a lifeline protecting women against brutal violence.” Wyden held a forum Friday morning with local leaders who deal with domestic abuse in Central Oregon.
Wyden wants Congress to pass the "Violence Against Women Act" in July, so it won't become more political as the Presidential Election approaches.
The Deschutes County Sheriff's Office and Sheriff Larry Blanton have been dismissed from a lawsuit claiming wrongdoing from a former inmate. In November 2011, inmate Danny Meyers filed the lawsuit, claiming the Sheriff’s Office mistakenly identified him, and transported out of Deschutes County on an outstanding Wasco County arrest warrant.
Sheriff’s Office legal counsel Darryl Nakahira says a lawsuit like this is not a common thing, and it was a costly procedure to investigate the charge: “We haven't crunched the actual numbers, but this took the time of County Legal counsel; my time as counsel for the Sheriff's Office, and management time for the Sheriff’s Office staff to retrieve the documents from other counties when, in fact we believe, and it was proven that we acted correctly." Nakahira says they have multiple layers that they use to confirm identification; including fingerprinting and a huge mug shot and information database.
Nakahira went on to say they felt they needed to send out a news release about the lawsuit; because there was an earlier published report on the lawsuit; and the Sheriff’s Office could not comment on it at the time, due to it was an active investigation.
Reckless burning, that's what local fire officials say caused a grass fire on NE Studio Road. Nearby residents of the Alpine Meadow Apartments were told they may have to evacuate; but Bend Fire officials were able to quick put out the fire. It happened shortly after midnight, this morning. Studio Road was closed for about an hour in that area. The investigation is continuing as officers are working with the Bend Fire Department to follow up on investigative leads. If anyone has information regarding this incident, please call the Bend Police Department at 541-693-6911.
A new poll ranks Bend number one among Oregon cities; the results were unveiled Thursday. The survey sampled about 700 Oregon residents between June 21st and 24th asking them about their impressions of Salem, Eugene, Portland, Corvallis, Medford and Bend. According to an article in the Bulletin, of the six cities the poll asked people about, Bend fared the best with 66% responding they had a “favorable” impression. Only 9% said they had a negative view of Bend. Medford had the lowest “favorable” rating by survey respondents.
As summer's heat arrives in Central Oregon, local officials are warning the public about the dangers of swimming in irrigation canals. Central Oregon Irrigation District Manager Steve Johnson and Bend Police Sergeant Ron Taylor spoke to News Channel 21. "It does look slow, but it's difficult to get out," said Johnson. "There are obstructions in the water that people can't see. The most recent drowning was several summers ago in Bend." "It was obviously very tragic," said Taylor. "Tragic for the family, and something that no one would ever want. But it just shows that water safety is something that we always need to have on the forefront." Sgt. Taylor answered the call when a toddler drowned in the water. Every spring, county officials visit nearby elementary schools to go over canal safety with children. They also remind you to keep your pets away from the canal because they too can easily drown.
The GPS device a Washington State visitor had in his backpack for a hike at Devils Lake was a good thing to have, until it went off accidentally. The false alarm happened Thursday afternoon and prompted an emergency response phone call and search for the man and his two sons. The coordinates for the alleged lost Lance Peterson, 41, of Battle Ground, Washington, pointed to an area of the Devils Lake trail about 1 ½ miles from the lake. Emergency officials spoke with Peterson’s wife back in Washington. She said her husband was hiking in the area with their two sons, ages 11 and 13. And they were planning to climb broken top and south, Sister during a four-day trip. Attempts to contact Peterson by cell phone and text message were unsuccessful so a SAR team headed to the area. They located the surprised trio several hours later, that's when they discovered the device had accidentally triggered in the backpack.
Three sold out "1776" shows at the Tower Theatre gives a big boost to the Tower Theatre Foundation. Tower Theatre Executive Director Ray Solley says the musical was a huge draw, bringing in more than 1200 people over three days and raising about $16,000 for the Foundation. Solley says the unique "staged concert" won't be the last. "It was a staged concert; so it wasn't a fully -blown with costumes and powdered wigs, and of course, no men. So it was a very different and very high quality and large-scale event with a full orchestra. So we're looking forward to doing more of those kinds of shows." Solley says they also closed out the fund-raising year with a record number of members, 770, the most since they began the campaign. Ray Solley was guest on 1110 KBND's "Your Town" Thursday.
A plan to help put unemployed forest workers in Oregon back to work isn't accomplishing its goal. Oregon U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley says only about half of the forest service projects through Recovery Act funding in Central Oregon are going to Oregonians. Instead they're going to foreign workers here on work visas.
Merkley and Don Pollard of GFP Enterprises in Sisters spoke at a press conference. “We have 5000 workers who want to want jobs to work in the forests, but they hired foreign workers instead on H2B programs. This is outrageous and unacceptable. We must change that. What we're finding we lost out to H2B companies who outbid us by 30% to 40%. When we bid we're just trying to find work for out employees, not trying to make a lot of money.” Merkley in the Senate and Oregon Congressman Peter DeFazio in the House are introducing legislation to prevent this practice in the future by giving government more oversight in who gets the contracts.
New City of Bend water and sewer utility rates took effect on July first. Sharon Wojda with the city says the average user will see about a $2.09 increase in their water bill during the summer and a little over a dollar in the winter. All sewer rates will go up $2.44. Wojda says this affects about a third of Bend's population: “The water rate increases will affect about 24,000 customers in the city and the sewer rate increases, about 27,000 customers." Wojda says if the city gets the requested postponement from the EPA, the rates could be reduced. "It would have potential to reduce water rates in the near term; but what those changes in rates would be, we're not sure of at this point." Wojda says the increases are needed to fund the aging water and sewer infrastructures. You should see the increases in your next bill.
A follow up to a story we first brought you last fall. In October, the state voted to sell about 500 acres of land in the Common School Fund and now those sales are complete. The sale of 3 parcels in Deschutes, Crook and Jefferson counties brought in about $662,000 at public auction. The state is trying to peel off some of the higher maintenance and lesser-valued properties to put in the fund for schools. State Lands Planner Doug Parker says there are some local parcels that are attractive to buyers. "And two of these sites; the Pederson Burn Road site, which is south of Sisters, as well as the Fly Lake site, those are both identified as being very attractive.” Doug Parker says in the past the plan has been updated about once every ten years; but with the recent volatility in the real estate market, Parker says they will re-do the plan every five years or even sooner.
Jefferson County officials are trying to tighten their belt and one idea is to closer the 911 center. They would then outsource the dispatch services to a 3-County Call Center in Condon. Sheriff Jim Adkins says the move would save enough money so they wouldn’t need to lay off patrol deputies. “Tri-County Communications currently serves as a 911 center for Gilliam, Sherman and Wheeler counties. Crook County has also been involved in talks to consolidate 911 services.” Adkins says moving the dispatch center 85 miles away would not affect how Jefferson County residents receive emergency services. The change could come within the next 3 to 6 months.
Oregon social service officials are allowing certain food stamp applicants to deduct medical marijuana costs from their income when qualifying for benefits. According to the Oregonian; only elderly or permanently disabled Oregonians who qualify for Social Security Disability insurance may file for the deduction. The deduction puts the state at odds with the federal government. Our neighboring states, California and Washington defer to federal guidelines, which say the deduction is not allowed. A spokesman for the Oregon Department of Revenue says the deduction is so limited, it’s rarely used.
Petition gatherers are optimistic they have enough signatures to put the “Death Tax” question on the ballot this November. Organizers say they've gathered 120,000 and they need just over 87,000 signatures. If you haven’t turned your petition in yet, it’s due now. Megan Chinaud with Common Sense for Oregon tells you where to drop them off in Bend. “The Central Oregon Builder’s Association has agreed to allow is to have volunteers drop off petitions between 8am-3pm today. I know this is a short timeframe, but we’re just trying to get all the petitions that are out in Bend up to Salem, so folks could go ahead and drop those off. The address for the Central Oregon Builder’s Association is: 1051 NE 4th Street in Bend.” The petitions are due in Salem by 5 p.m. tomorrow.
Pro-life advocates are gathering signatures for "Issue 25" which would end public funding for abortion through the Oregon Health Plan. Jeff Jimerson, the Chief Petitioner for Issue 25, says this is not about banning abortion, but rather is to make sure that Oregonians who are against abortions, do not have to help finance abortion for other people. "Most people in Oregon do not know that their tax dollars are currently being spent on about 3500 abortions every year that amounts to be about one third of abortions in the state are funded by taxpayers." The goal is to gather 150,000 signatures, however to date the issue has only garnered 65,000, with 5,100 coming from Deschutes County. Even if the issue is approved, abortions for cases of rape, incest and to save the life of the mother will still be eligible for federal funding.
Ed Keith has been hired as the new County Forester and will start on Monday, July 16. Ed will replace County Forester and Project Wildfire Director Joe Stutler, who retired last week from Deschutes County.
“Living in Deschutes County means living with the threat of wildfire. The job of the forester is an important link in the continuum of public safety services that help to protect our communities. Project Wildfire is an international model of how to engage homeowners in reducing the risk of a catastrophic event,” Deschutes County Commissioner Tammy Baney said.
In his new position, Ed will continue the liaison role between the County and the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, legislators, County committees or departments, environmental groups, community groups and will continue to assist in the development of the County All-Hazards Mitigation Plan. He will act as technical advisor to Deschutes County Commissioners and staff regarding forest matters and other responsibilities regarding fire hazard mitigation and forest policy.
Ed has a bachelor’s degree in Forest Management/Forest Recreation Management from Utah State and worked for the Oregon Department of Forestry since 2000, holding the positions of Forest Manager 2, Stewardship Forester, and Natural Resource Specialist 2. Prior to his employment with the Department of Forestry, Ed was a Park Ranger for the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. Ed was most recently stationed in Sweet Home, Oregon where he worked on the Fire Protection Program, the Private Forests Program, as well as administrative functions
OSU Cascades has met its goal to raise at least $1-million by the end of June. It was a capital campaign to show state leaders the community is behind making OSU Cascades a four year university. Mt. Bachelor has pledged a quarter a million dollars over the next five years. The Ski Hill will give the college 1000 ski vouchers every year for the next five years, and they'll be good for an all day ski lift ticket for $50 dollars, any day except holidays. Andy Goggins is Mt. Bachelor's Director of Marketing. “The economic impact for our community could be pretty significant if it goes through. It’s going to be great for OSU and great for the community.”
Ultimately, OSU Cascades leaders hope to raise $4- million in local donations, along with $4-million in campus funds and $16-million in state funds to make OSU Cascades a four year university.
Oregon is set to undergo major changes to how its healthcare plan for low-income Oregonians are coordinated. The State will have Coordinated Care Organizations that will help operate the Oregon Health Plan starting August first. These CCO's will help coordinate care between hospitals, doctors and other providers for the state's 600,000 patients on the Oregon Health Plan. Dr. Robin Henderson with the Central Oregon Health Council is encouraged we're getting off center. “You've got to start somewhere. While it's not perfect, it is good enough to get us moving. And we can tweak and adjust as we need to. But doing nothing wasn't going to get us anything. We need to do something to get the conversation rolling.” The Regional Coordinated Care Organization for Central Oregon has been approved and is set to begin operating and serving members on August first.
U.S. Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon will present the "Defense of Freedom Medal" to the husband of a fallen Central Oregon woman, who died while serving our country as a civilian. Deborah Klecker and three other fallen first responders will be honored on the Bend First Responders Memorial near the Bend Heroes Memorial on Friday. Seven years ago, Klecker was killed by a roadside bomb while working in Iraq, training Iraqi Police.
Klecker worked as a contractor for DynCorp International, she was 51. As a civilian, she is not eligible for the Purple Heart; and in recent years, a campaign by family members and others resulted the civilian medal.
Senator Wyden will present the Defense of Freedom Medal to Greg Klecker at 8:30 Friday morning at the memorial.
The Bend Parks and Rec Board members are meeting tonight and they will decide whether or not to bring a $29 million bond request to voters in November. Executive Director Don Horton says Public feedback shows that people want money spent on parks and features near the river. "So the number one project we have on here is the completion of the Deschutes River Trail. Trail users could hike or bike all the way from Tumalo State Park all the way to Sunriver; the gaps within that trail system now all reside within the Parks District, so this is our opportunity to complete that trail, that means building about 3 miles of trail; doing 2 or 3 bridges across the Deschutes river, and acquiring the remaining that we need to be able to do that. That's about 41% of the bond measure is dedicated to completion of the Deschutes River Trail. “ Another large chunk of the money would go for building a safe passage way at the Colorado Dam. If the Board passes the $29 million request tonight; this would be the first time that the District has gone to voters with a bond request.
Authorities in Idaho say a Redmond man was injured in a powered parachute crash in Post Falls, Idaho.
County officials say that David Endsley, 50, of Redmond was with an 18 year old Idaho man and they were trying to launch the parachute in a church parking lot Sunday evening. During the attempt, they crashed into an empty church bus that was sitting in the parking lot. Endsley was operating the parachute and he was treated for his injuries at the scene; the other man, Collin Williams was taken to a local hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
Deschutes County officials have okayed a 1 year contract to rent jail beds from Jefferson County. The local jails beds are full; and Deschutes County authorities don’t expect those beds to empty out anytime soon.
According to an article in the Bulletin, the Deschutes County Board of Commissioners okayed the contract Monday during their weekly meeting. The cost of the 10 beds is about $63 a day per bed.
OSU/Cascades easily met its goal of raising at least a million dollars by the end of June. The school actually brought in $1.5 million in the fundraising drive aimed at showing the state that Central Oregon is serious about establishing a four year university here. More than 50 donors stepped forward in the drive that was launched in May. The initial goal was 40 gifts of $25,000. As of June 30th, 54 people and businesses made commitments of at least $25,000 dollars each. A combination of state funds, loans and private support will be required for the campus expansion.
Surgeons at a California hospital say they’ve found a heart donor for an 11 year old Bend boy in need of a transplant. Gabriel Lawson is at a hospital in Palo Alto, California and his parents posted on his Facebook page that a donor had been found. The posting also said the heart is a 98% match and that surgery is scheduled for 8 pm Sunday night. Gabriel has been at the hospital in California since May. He has a congenital heart defect.
Oregon officials have suspended 10 recent and upcoming timber sales on about 800 acres of state land as they prepare for a legal fight with conservation groups over a rare seabird. The question in that battle is whether the state's logging goals in the coastal Elliott, Tillamook and Clatsop State Forests illegally harm the habitat of the threatened Marbled Murrelet, which is protected under the Endangered Species Act. The bird lays its eggs on the large, mossy branches of mature and old-growth trees. Oregon Forestry Department spokesman Kevin Weeks says the state took the unprecedented action so that officials who would normally work on timber sales could focus on preparing for the federal court fight in Portland. In May, 3 environmental groups sued Governor John Kitzhaber and Oregon Forestry agencies in an effort to halt logging in areas where the bird nests.
Many Central Oregonians enjoy going out to the Deschutes National Forest to celebrate the Fourth of July.
But if you are planning on going out to the woods, you could face up to 6 months in jail and up to $5,000 in fines if you bring fireworks with you. Jean Nelson-Dean, Public Affairs Officer for Deschutes National Forest, says they are not trying to keep people from having a good time, rather they just want to keep everyone safe.
"So we are just reminding folks that we know this is a special time to celebrate and a lot of folks like to go out camping. But just as a reminder, leave the fireworks at home." Because fireworks can cause forest fires, they are even more dangerous in areas that are prone to fire like Central Oregon. Nelson-Dean also says campers should make sure to fully extinguish any campfires. If it too hot to touch, it is not completely out and therefore is also a forest fire threat.
Nearly 100 members of the U.S. House are pushing Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to include white potatoes in its federal supplemental nutrition program for women and children. The USDA has banned fresh white potatoes from the “WIC” (Women, Infant & Children) Program. Oregon U.S. Congressman Greg Walden is joining Democratic Congressman Gregory Meeks of New York asking Secretary Vilsack to reverse his Department's ban. “A medium white potato has more folic accident than cooked carrots or sweet potatoes. And folic acid is important in the maintenance of new cells, which is especially important during pregnancy.”
93 U.S. House members signed a letter to the USDA asking the agency to reverse its decision to ban fresh white potatoes. Potatoes are an important source of folic acid and are one of the cheapest fruits or vegetables available from the produce aisle.
Three Central Oregonians are recently hospitalized for botulism after eating home canned beets at a private barbeque. Two of the patients are out of the hospital, but Deschutes County health officials want to warn people about the dangers of botulism. If food isn't canned properly, specifically at a temperatures above 240 degrees, botulism spores aren't destroyed and can make people sick. Eric Mone is with the Deschutes County Health Department. “Botulism is a muscle paralyzing disease. It starts in the cranial area and goes right to your toe. You will become paralyzed and can't breach. One case of botulism is cause for alarm.” On average, Oregon sees about two cases of botulism a year. So for one area to see three cases, is a lot. Health officials says botulism is not spread person to person, so there is no risk to the general public.
July 4th, the Bend Elks will be facing off against the Kelowna Falcons. At the game, veterans of World War II will be publicly recognized for their service and a portion of the proceeds will go towards "Honor Flights" to take the World War II vets to Washington D.C. to see the National World War II Memorial. Dick Tobiason, President of the Bend Heroes Foundation says it is a really special moment: "It is a shared experience because the World War II veterans are transformed by the visit. They go there in anticipation of 'what is this great big thing we are going to see that is a tribute to our service?'" So far, the Bend Heroes Foundation has provided Honor Flights to 157 World War II vets. Fans are invited to the field to watch the Pilot Butte fireworks after the game is over.
Beginning today, the only access on Pilot Butte will be by foot, to get ready for the July 4th fireworks display.
According to Bend Fire Deputy Fire Marshal Cindy Kettering, all the trails and roadways will be accessible to pedestrians though 10 p.m. on Tuesday, July 3rd with the exception of the summit, which will be closed to all but authorized personnel and equipment.
On July 4th access to all trails will be closed until the morning of July 5th. Kettering says to please respect the closures for your own safety and the safety of those working on the fireworks set up. In addition, OregonState Parks requests your cooperation around Linnea Drive near the butte; that you do not light off fireworks of any kind and no dogs will be permitted on July 4th.
State Representative Jason Conger has raised about $100,000 in his bid to keep his District 54 seat. His opponent, challenger Nathan Hovekamp has brought in about $20,000. Conger says he's encouraged by the fundraising so far, and that depending on the circumstances, it can cost a lot of money to stay in office or challenge a seat. "I think in the last couple of races in District 54, the amount of money spent by both candidates is somewhere between $700,000 and $1 million in the entire campaign.” Last September, Hovekamp announced that he'd take on Conger. The two are scheduled for a live debate here on 1110KBND on July 31st.
Parks and Rec workers are putting in new sprinklers at Pine Nursery in northeast Bend; but that's not the only improvement planned for the park. Norm Zeisper with Bend Parks and Rec runs down some of the plans: “We're starting restrooms, and a picnic shelter for the rest of the park. These are big amenities that people are really looking forward to. We’re looking for an architect to draw up plans and then we can get started on the buildings. And that will really help with tournaments and sports events with the restrooms there.”
Construction of the restrooms should start in the fall and be available by next summer. A playground is also planned for Pine Nursery for the fall of 2013.
He says, “Also, at Ponderosa Park, they will be adding new driveway on the Wilson Avenue side and we're expanding undeveloped area for a new park lot. We’re putting in a picnic shelter, restrooms and group picnic area , with easier access to off-leash area, so people will be able to park right next to the off leash area.”
In future years, renovations are planned for Ponderosa Park's skateboard area as well.
It’s a first for the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: a fundraiser that has literally "taken off." An 18 month calendar, called "The Men Behind the Quilts" features some of Sister's best - and willing "assets" almost in the buff. Quilt Executive Director Ann Richardson explains how everything came together: “We are a nonprofit organization, and our show is free, but our show is not free to us. It’s costs about $150,000 to put on the show. So we are always trying to come up with creative ways to raise funds to support the show. And our Board of Directors came up with the idea doing a calendar. And someone came up with the brilliant idea of 'what about guys & quilts?' and it just kind of took off from there."
Richardson says they asked several well know Sisters personalities like the retired Fire Chief and Sisters Athletic Club owner and they all agreed to pose nude behind the quilts. The calendars are on sale in most Sisters businesses and on the Quilt Show website. The 2012 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show is July 14th.