Each year we select the top ten local stories we covered. The criteria are local impact and attention. Here is our list for 2012.
1-ELECTION: Bend Parks 29 Million Dollar Bond Passes, Tim Knopp defeats Chris Telfer in Republican primart; Statewide measure 79 passes bans taxing real estate transfers, Bend Dr. Knute Buehler runs for Secretary of State, longtime Bend City council member Kathie Eckman losses seat to Sally Russell.
2- ASHTON EATON. Eaton - Bend's own Ashton Easton breaks world record in Eugene; then goes on to win the Gold in Olympics; thousands turn out for a Heroes Parade in Bend to honor Ashton and other Olympic athletes.
3- OSU CASCADES -efforts to make it into a four year school moves forward in a big way after years of discussions. Many individual and business donations come in to help the effort. Two large donations from the Tykeson Foundation (1 million dollars) and Cutting Foundation (2 million dollars) are also announced. .
4. SWIP STOPPED - Bend's controsversial Surface Water Improvement Project is halted by a judge in Eugene after Central Oregon Landwatch files a lawsuit. Estimated pricetag for project is 68 million dollars.
5. POLE CREEK FIRE - The fire near Sisters burned 40 squre miles in the Deschutes National Forest, cost 18 million to fight and resulted in smoke health advisories for several days and "pre-evacuation" notices for nearby subdivisions.. A report issued after the fire shows a Federal dispatcher received the call 3 hours before crews were dispatched to the fire.
6. REDMOND SCHOOLS (ups and downs) - Four students die car crashes, school principal dies in motorcycle crash, and the head of the Redmond Proficiency Academy is arrested for his relationship with a student and other crimes. On a positive note, the district opens the state of the art Ridgeview High School and starts major upgrades to Redmond High School. .
7. SPECIAL SESSION CALLED IN SALEM. Lawmakers pass a bill that keeps Nike from expanding in another state. The bill also impacts other large businesses who want to expand and create new jobs. The one day session is held on December 14th.
8. BEND NOISE ORDINANCE CHANGES. Changes to the city's noise ordinance impacts the local music scene and Century Center announces it will close because of the changes. The first ticket connected with the Ordinance is thrown out by a local judge. The council plans to re-visit it in January or February.
9. BEND ROADS PROJECTS START. As the result of the 30 million dollar bond passed by voters recently there is a lot of construction around Bend in 2012. The three main projects are roundabouts at Northwest Crossing, 18th and Empire and Powers and Brookswood. Another big project is slated soon for Reed Market Road.
10. MADRAS SCHOOLS PASS VOTER REQUEST. Paves the way for upgrades and new schools in Madras and Warm Springs.
Highlights of these stories will also air in a special report on Monday, Dec. 31st at 8:40a on 1110 KBND's Morning News.