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Local News Archives for 2013-09


Significant Rainfall Expected Over the Weekend


The Portland area and the coast will probably see the most rain, but central oregon will get some too.

 

Steve Pierce, President of the Oregon American Meteorological Societt, says it's unusual to get this much rain in late fall.

 

"But for late September, this is a very active system and most locations, Bend, Redmond, Pendlton will pick up quite a bit of rain, but we don't have to worry about snow.  It won't be a cold system."

 

Portland is poised to beat its previous wettest September on record in 1986, when more than four inches of rain fell during the month.

Oregon Center for Public Policy Opposes Grand Bargain


The Oregon Center for Public Policy finds several flaws, including shrinking revenue in future budgets.

 

Chuck Sheketoff is with OCPP.

 

"We're not a fan of it because the tax package has diminishing returns.  The huge tax cut goes primarily to the wealthiest.  And the amount of revenue will go down significantly in the next two budget periods."

 

The legislation claims to raise 189 milllion in new revenue to help pay for 200 million in new investments in education, but those revenues shrink to 50 million in the 2015 to 2017 biennium and to 25 million during the 2017 to 2019 biennium.  That's a 87 percent revenue drop.

Latest S-A-T Scores for Oregon Students Down from Last Year


The Oregon Department of Education reports a dip in the scores in several subjects. Specifically, math scores were the lowest in the past twelve years.

 

Crystal Greene is the Communications Director for the Oregon Department of Education.

 

"The numbers are well above the national average, but we still saw scores dropping in reading and math and holding steady in writing and that's not the direction we like to go. We'd like to see more kids taking the exam and doing well. We saw a slight derease in the number of kids taking the test and as I said, a slight decrease in reading and math."

 

Test scores from Oregon students on the A-C-T tests released last month -- showed a slight increase in scores from last year.

Congress Approves County Timber Payment Extension


The Senate passed the bill on Thursday and the U.S. House passed in on Wednesday.

 

The bill is now headed to President Obama's desk for his signature.

 

The legislation will provide 33 Oregon counties with 100 million for schools, roads and law enforcement.

 

The county payments program expired last year.  Since the program was started in 2000, it has brought more than 2.8 bill on to Oregon counties.

Senator Wyden Starts Debate on Reforming Our Domestic Surveillance Laws


The four senators unvield their legislation which will forbid bulk collection of Americans' records and addsa constitutional advocate to argue cases before the surveillance court.

 

Senator Ron Wyden has been at the forefront of this issue and believes they're

gaining support.

 

"And I can tell you it was really a lonely cause here six to seven years ago.  Btu we finally got reinforcements in the Senate in Udall and Blumenthal.  We don't have to meet in a phone booth anymore.  Our side is getting exceptional momentum.  I feel we're going to get  this done."

 

Senator Wyden believes the White House is coming on board with their suggestions on reigning in surveillance while protecting national security.

Redmond Mayor Reacts to Demotion of the City's Airport Director


Keith Witcosky has decided to demote the city's Airport Director, Kim Dickie.

 

Mayor George Endicott reacts to the latest development.

 

"I appreicate the fact that he's decisive and he saw a situation and I don't know the particulars, but he took action that he felt was necessary."

 

Redmond is bringing in the former Eugene Airport Director to take over at the Redmond Airport.

 

He is not interested in the permanent job, so the city is expected to start a new search soon.

Are some Gun Rights Supporters too Aggressive in their approach?


 

 

 
DESCHUTES COUNTY SHERIFF LARRY BLANTON SAYS OVER-THE-TOP GUN RIGHTS ACTIVISTS MAY BE HURTING THEIR OWN CAUSE.
 
FM NEW 100 and 1110 kbnd news spoke with BLANTON ABOUT THE RECENT DEBATE THAT ERRUPTED AFTER STARBUCK'S C-E-O ASKED CUSTOMERS *NOT* TO COME IN PACKING HEAT.
 
HOWARD SCHULTZ's STATEMENT WAS IN RESPONSE TO RUN RIGHTS GROUPS COMING INTO STARBUCKS IN FORCE DURING "CUSTOMER APPRECIATion DAYS."
 
SOME CUSTOMERS WERE OFFENDED BY THE BLATANT DISPLAY OF FIREARMS.
"ALSO MY OPINION- FOR PEOPLE WHO SUPPORT THE CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT TO BEAR ARMS DON'T SHOVE THAT INTO SOMEONE'S FACE- AND FOR THOSE AT STARBUCKS OR ELSEWHERE- IF YOU DON'T LIKE WHAT'S GOING ON THERE GO SOMEWHERE ELSE."
 
AND LAST JANUARY ANOTHER BIG GUN RIGHTS STORY WAS IN PORTLAND WHEN Two Oregon men carrIED semiautomatic rifles on their backs THROUGH A NEIGHBORHOOD.  
 
THAT caused alarm and even prompted a learning center to go into lockdown.
 
but the men said they were just exercising their Second Amendment right to bear arms in public.
 

 

LaPine Man Will Spend The Rest of His Life in Prison for His Wife's Murder


86 year old Lawrence Loeffler was convicted by a jury for  shooting to death  his 83 year old wife Betty in their home in January.

 

It took the jury less than an hour to reach their verdict.

 

Deschutes County Circuit Court Judge Michael Adler told Loeffler,  "Due to health, I don't know how long you will live, But I do know you will spend the rest of your life in prison."

 

Loeffler told police conflicting accounts why he shot his wife.  He claimed she and her stepdaughter were plotting to kill him.

Bend Sears Store Closing


The store in the Bend River Mall has been there since 1980.  It will be closing mid December.

 

The store's 48 workers were notified of the decision on Monday.

 

Sears has struggled for years, closing hudnreds of stores across the country trying to  compete with low cost retailers like Walmart and Target.

 

The Bend River Mall is looking to find new tenants to fill the space. It's possible it'll be divided to allow for a couple tenants.

 

Homeotwn Sears stores in Madras, Redmond and Prienville will remain open.

Klamath Body Missing Bend Man


His death was ruled a suicide... the result of severe thermal trauma.  Severe burns apparently killed him.

 

Sullivan-Shipley's family reported him missing on September 6th when he didn't show up for work the day before.

 

His wife told authorites her hsuband was going through a tough time at the time he disappeared.

St. Charles and BMC Working Together to Expand Vascular Services in Central Oregon


That is changing thanks to a team effort between St. Charles and Bend Memorial Clinic.

 

The two health facilities paired up to expand vascualr services in central Oregon.

 

Karen Doolan is the Director of Heart Services at St. Charles.

 

"It means that patients with vascular problems like peripheral vascular disease in your leg or porblems with your carotid artery, you can get state of the art treatment that in the past they had to to do to Seattle or Portland for that kind of treatment."

 

St. Charles is building a new state of the art hybrid operating room where a lot of these procedures will be performed.

 

It should be done by early next year.

 

 

Association of Oregon Counties Hopeful About Upcoming Special Session


The Assocaition of Oregon Counties feels the framework already agreed to will help funnel more money to badly needed public services.

 

Mike McArthur, Executive Director of the Assocaition of Oregon Counties, says compromise is not a dirty word.

 

"We should look at this as a step forward for Oreogn.  Look at this as a compromise in the Oregon tradition.  It is this middle ground collaborative process that is missing in federal government.  Each side gives some, for the greater good."

 

Counties are anxious to see more funding for such programs as mental health, schools and law enfrocement.

 

The special session wil lbe next Monday Septmber 30th.

Unemployment in Central Oregon This Summer Mostly Unchanged


Crook County's unemployment is around 12 and a half percent, Jefferson County is around 10 and a half percent and Deschutes County is below ten percent.

 

Regional Economist Damon Runberg.

 

"Dropping down in August to 9.9 percent from 10 percent is not significantly a change, but it is a milestone that unemployment is within single digits for the first time in five years.  Psychologiclaly is is a bit of a boost and a milestone for us to hit."

 

Statewide, Oregon is experiencing the same stagnation as central Oregon.

 

The state's unemployment rate of 8.1 percent in August was actually up from 8 percent in July.

Autopsy on Chemult Body To Be Conducted Tuesday


Authorities belive it belongs to 42 year old Jonathan Sullivan-Shipley of Bend who has been missing since September 5th.

 

The body was found near a car owned by Shipley.

 

Klamath county D.A. Rob Patridge says the autopsy will help them confirm who this is.

 

Shipley's wife told News Channel 21 her husband was in a very bad state of mind when he disappeared.  He never showed up for work and hasn't been heard from since earlier this month.

Mammogram Wars Heat Up Again


A recent Harvard study found that many women diagnosed with breast cancer before the age of 50 had never been screeend, so they concluded mammograms could have saved their lives.

 

Dr. Gil Welch, who has written a book about how american medicine overscreens for too many diseases says their conclusions is a leap.

 

"A lot of medical literature is not correct.  The process of scientific inference takes a little time and I'm afraid this paper was not well reviewed. Their conclusion wasn't supported by the data."

 

Critics like Dr. Welch say jsut because someone didn't get a mammogram doesn't mean it could have saved their lives.  He says early detection is not a guarantee someone won't die.

 

The American Cancer Soceity reocmmends women get a yearly mammogram after the age of 40, but the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends women start getting regular mammograms starting at 50.

 

See H. Gilbert Welch's N.Y. Times Op-Ed piece here:

 

Latest Poverty Numbers for Oregon Going Up


The U.S. House passed a bill last week that would cut 40 billion over the next ten years for the program.

 

It is estimated it would force 3.8 million off of the program nation wide.

 

Juan Carlos Ordonez with the Oregon Center for Public Poloicy says the need for this program is greater than ever

 

"At a national level, we need to protect the program to meet the needs of the SNAP program.  But beyond that, we need a robust job programs that puts people back to work.  A lot of the problems with poverty are a direct result of the unemployment levels."

 

17 percent of Oregonians are living in poverty according to the latest census figures.

 

During the recession, 14 percent were living in poverty, so the numbers are going up, not down during the recovery.

Small Outbreak of Whooping Cough in Deschutes County


Whooping cough or pertussis is a highly contagious respiratory infection.

 

It can be dangerous in infants with their small airways and more of an annoyance for older children and adults.

 

The health department recommends everyone be up to date on their pertussis vaccine to best protect yourself.

Higher Ed Board Approves Property Purchase


The Oregon State Board of Higher Education has approved the purchase of 56 acres of land to begin building the new Central Oregon campus for OSU/Cascades.

 

OSU/Cascades spokesperson Christine Coffin says the purchase of the 2 property land should be completed by March of 2014.

 

A 10-acre property currently owned by Cascades Property Holdings, LLC, should close in October but a 46- acre parcel owned by 4-R Equipment, LLC probably won't close until next March.

 

That larger parcel contains a pumice mine and is zoned residential, so a remediation plan needs to be developed.

 

Coffin says University officials are working with the City of Bend and the Campus Expansion Advisory Committee to outline a master planning process and keep the public informed.

House Passes Historic Forestry Bill, but White House Threatens a veto


 

HERE IS A NEWS RELEASE FROM GREG WALDEN'S OFFICE:

 

WASHINGTON – The U.S. House today approved a historic forestry bill, the Restoring Healthy Forests for Healthy Communities Act (H.R. 1526), on a bipartisan basis. The bill renews the federal government’s commitment to actively manage federal forests to create jobs in the woods, improve forest health, reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire, and generate revenue for local communities to provide essential local services like schools and law enforcement.

 

During debate over passage of the plan, U.S. Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.) told his colleagues of the dire situation faced in Oregon’s forested communities because of broken federal forest policy. “While these federal forests surrounding our rural communities are burning, rural families are sentenced to live in poverty as the mills close, the jobs disappear, all because we can’t access our abundant and renewable natural resources on federal land. It’s clear the status quo is not working for families in our rural communities. This broken system has to change,” Walden said.

 

The bill contains the O&C Trust, Conservation and Jobs Act, a plan offered by Walden and Reps. Peter DeFazio and Kurt Schrader to deal with Oregon’s unique O&C lands. Their proposal would put people back to work in the woods and generate revenues to failing Oregon counties.

 

“We have worked though our differences and forged a balanced, common-sense plan that would create or save thousands of forest jobs in Oregon. We would ensure the health of these lands for future generations, and provide long-term funding certainty for Oregon’s rural schools, roads, and law enforcement agencies that lie within these counties. And it would stem the tide of endless litigation,” Walden told his colleagues.

 

Walden urged the House to pass this legislation to change federal forest policy. “The Restoring Healthy Forests for Healthy Communities Act will create prosperous communities and healthy forests. It will provide certainty for teachers and law enforcement officers. It will provide tools to our professional forest stewards to better manage our federal forests. It’s our opportunity to make federal forest policy work for Oregonians and all Americans,” Walden said.

 

Passage of this bill continues Walden's mission to make forest policy work for Oregonians.  He has been a leader in the passage of the bipartisan Healthy Forest Restoration Act, the Forest Emergency Research and Recovery Act, and the FLAME Act. 

 

For more information on the Restoring Healthy Forests for Healthy Communities Act (H.R. 1526), click here. For information on the O&C Trust, Conservation, and Jobs Act, click here.

 

 

###

 

 

 

 

20,000 Arson reward offered...


Fire authorities in Northern California and The Klamath National Forest are offering up to a $20,000  reward for information leading to the arrest and  conviction of an arsonist. 

 

The Forest Service says the  large Salmon River Complex and Butler fires were set on purpose.  The fires have posed a serious threat to private property and nearby homes.  They say they’ve been “tremendously lucky” that no homes were lost. 

 

The Salmon River Complex and Butler fires as well as 4 additional fires were started between 9 and 10:30 p.m. on July 31st. The fires have burned more than 37 thousand acres. 

 

The arson tip line is 1-800-468-4408.

Dartmouth Professor Speaks About Dangers of Over-Diagnosis at Pease Symposium


Dr. Gil Welch has written a book called "Over-Diagnosed: Making People Sick in the Pursuit of Health."

 

Welch feels American overscreens for too many conditions  -- and iti s resulting in treating people for illnesses that would never cause them problems.

 

"For twenty years I've been concerned about how we look hard at the well to see if we could prevent illness.  One of the questions I ask doctors is, is looking hard at the well,  good for the healthcare system and I'm not sure it is.  I think we have to be careful about looking too hard for things to be wrong."

 

Dr. Welch specifically points to mammograms for breast cancer and PSA  tests for prostate cancer as tests that are overused by doctors.

 

He feels Big Pharma and medical product manufacturers have financial incentives to push these screenings and doctors concerned about malpractice order the tests to protect themselves.

City Club of Central Oregon Forum on Healthcare or Health Scare


The City Club of Central Oregon took up the subject of "Healthcare or Health Scare?" at its monthly meeting Thursday.

 

The panel included Rhonda Giles with Pacific Source.

 

She told the audience as we implement Obamacare, she anticipates pros and cons.

 

"So, I would say the subsidies will mean more people will have health insurance.  Medicaid won't be a lottery anymore.  But there wil lbe unintended consequences.  Our concerns are, you may qualify for a subsidy, but if you're eligible for a group plan. you can't get a subsidy."

 

Oregon's on-line health exchanges -- known as "Cover Oregon" -- will open for business on October 1st with a variety of plans for eligible participants.

Framework Reached on Grand Bargain for Special Session


Governor Kitzhaber and legislative leaders have reached agreement on a framework for cuts to the public pension system and new tax revenues.

 

Alex Pulaski with the Oregon School Boards Association is cautiously optimistic.

 

"We're not there yet, but we feel we're close to being there.  The Governor spent a lot of energy on this.  And it is the single biggest fiscal issue facing school boards across the state."

 

The special session is scheduled for Monday September 30th.

 

The framework hopes to get more than 140 million for K-12 schools and higher education and  244 million in new revenue with relief for business and agricultural exporters.

Oregon Board of Agriculture Comes to Prineville


The ten member board has spent the last two days in Prineville. 

 

They try to take their quarterly board meetings "on the road" to get public input.

 

Bruce Pokarney with the Oregon Department of Agriculture sheds light on what was discussed.

 

"Primarily, water is the issue around the state and here in central Oregon -- having enough water or enough irrigation.  And there's increased concern there may not be enough water to grow corps.  Some of the problems with endangered species, mitigation efforts that require less water for agriculture."

 

The Oregon Board of Agriculture has not met in Prineville for more than twenty years.

D.A. Says Officer Involved Shooting Justified


The shooting happened on Friday August 30th on Highway 20 near Sisters.  

 

Troopers pulled over William Hall of Texas after complaints he was speeding and driving erratically.

 

Hall threatened troopers with a gun when he was stopped and he then led them on a high speed chase that ended in his death.

 

The officer say it appears Mr. Hall was probably under the influence of a stimulant.

 

A medical examiner determiend Hall shot himself in the head after he was forced to stop by officers a couple miles down the road.

 

Detectives learned Hall had recently served six years in prison for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and that he was a member of the Aryan Brotherhood -- a white supremacist prison gang.

 

He apparently had vowed to commit suicide rather than return to prison.

Oregon's Minimum Wage Going Up


Oregon's minmum wage is going up to $9.10 an hour -- as its adjusted for inflation every year.

 

The increase is expected to generate more than 20 million in new consumer spending for Oregon's economy.

 

But Jason Gettel with "The Oregon Center for Public Policy" says the increase won't be enough to lift most people out of poverty.

 

"The perception is minimum wage workers are teens, but that's not true.  I don't have the numbers in front of  me, but the figure 80 percent sounds right.  Most minimum wage earners are adults."

 

According to the Economic Policy Institute, roughly 80 percent of all affected minimum wage workers living in states with indexed minimum wages, were at least 20 years old.

Oregon's August Unemployment Rate Continues Around Eight Percent


The jobless rate in August was 8.1 percent, essentially unchanged from 8 percent in July.

 

State Economist Nick Bielichicks breaks down where jobs are being added and cut.

 

"Education and health services added 2500 jobs and manufacturing added 1200 jobs.  Financial activities, which is real estate and banking lost about 1300 jobs in August."

 

Unlike most private sector major industries in Oregon, financial services has shown no net recovery over the past six years.

 

 

Bend Pastor Continues to Improve Following Motorcycle Accident


Dan Dillard tore his aorta and shattered his pelvis when he was in a motorcycle crash on Bear Creek Road.

 

His wife Sharon says he's slated to undergo surgery to repair his pelvis this Thursday.  He has certainly defied the odds.

 

"We're just so thankful, police and fire immediately got him to the hospital and they gave him 15 units of blood. Many people worked on him and we're just so thankful for al  the workers at St. Charles."

 

Monday was Dan's 61st birthday.  He continues  to fight an infection with antibiotics.  He's now off a respirator and breathing on his own.

Five Year Anniversary of Lehman Brothers Collapse


It was September 15th, 2008 when Lehman filed for bankruptcy, which was the largest in U.S. history.

 

Bend financial advisor Troy Reinarht offers some insight.

 

"Well, I think we've learned or re-learned the bubble of twenty years ago is being created today.  I don't think the same problems will happen, but there are things that can happen.  The bubble gets created and we have a crash."

 

The government stepped in and infused banks with $245 bilion in taxpayer money to prevent a financial meldown.

 

President Obama points to rising housing prices and 35 straight months of job growth as signs of an improving economy.

Representative Conger Concerned About the Lack of New Middle Class Jobs in Central Oregon


They are often jobs for laborers, restaurant workers or other service workers.

 

Representative Jason Conger is happy we're seeing more jobs, but he's concerned about our dwindling middle class.

 

"There are a lot of long term problems we need to address, like where jobs are being created, not in the middle class.  And the long term unemployment.  Are people getting jobs or dropping out of the workforce or are they staying on unemployment because they don't have opportunities because they can't find a good job."

 

Conger says since the beginning of this year, central Oreogn has seen 32-hundred new jobs.

City of Bend Works to Prevent Transients in the Juniper Ridge Area


It's a continuing challenge and there have been recent complaints about transients near Juniper Ridge.

 

Assistant City Manager Jon Skidmore talked about the problem with the city council recently.

 

"The problem is it's like whack a mole.  We try to be pro active, but they just show up somewhere else.  We try to block off the access into there and unfortuantely most of the transients aren't driving there so."

 

The city of Bend works with the Central Oregon Veterans Organization and Deschutes County Mental Health to help move these homeless camps as humanely as possible.

St. Charles Starts Public Fundraising for Cancer Center


St. Charles Health System has contributed 8 million and now they're asking for the public's help with the remaining 5 million.

 

Lisa Dobey, Executive Director of the St. Charles Foundatin says we are entering the public phase.

 

"We're half way.  We're trying to raise 5.7 million but we still have half way to go.  So we're encouraging folks to reach into their pocket, whether for  two dolalrs of two million to help friends and family who might be facing cancer."

 

A portion of the proceeds from the Annual St Charles Foundation "Saints Gala " on November 1st at the Riverhouse, will go to support the Cancer Center.

 

The new facility is slated to be done next summer.

Police Seek Help to Find Missing Bend Man


Bend Police are asking for your help to find a 42 year old man who has been missing since September 5th.

 

Jonathan Sullivan Shipley left for work at the High Desert Assisted Living Facility around 9:30 on the 5th, but never arrived and has not been seen or have any family contact since.

 

He did not take any camping gear or any other property with him and there has been no activity on this bank account.

 

Lt. Brian Kindel with Bend Police says Sullivan does not suffer from any medical conditions, but this behavior is not normal for him.

 

He is driving a 1989 Blue Toyota station wagon with license plate number QEY282.

 

If you have any information about Jonathan Sullivan Shipley, contact Bend Police at 541-633-8097.

 

 

OSU Cascades Has Picked Two Possible Locations for Its New Four Year Campus


One property is near the intersection of SW Century and Chandler about a half mile from the Graduate and Research Center.  The other site is on SW Chandler and contains a pumice mine.  Collectively, they are 56 acres.

 

The first freshmen class for a four year OSU Cascades campus would be in the fall of 2015. The goal is to enroll between 3 and 5 thousand students by 2025.

 

The Finance and Administration Commitee of the State Board of Higher Education will be looking at the properties when they are in Bend next Friday September 20th.

Madras Aquatic Center Reorganizes


The center's two managers have resigned and the district is looking for new ones.

 

Part of the problem was the managerial structure .. and so the MAC Board is restructuring the oversight of the facility.

 

Instead of having two managers -- an Operations Manager and an Aquatics Manager -- there will instead be just one Director who will answer to the board and the Aquatic Manager will answer to the Director.

 

Board Chair Anita Goodwin says they're working on hiring new managers.

 

"I want people to know this has been a difficult process. This is not what we would have wanted with the MAC .  But we are working on it trying to continue quality services through this transition.  And we should be better than ever, I hope."

 

Goodwin says they've received a lot of applicants for their openings and they hope to hire new managers in the next month.

Man Who Unseats Colorado Lawmaker Over Gun Control Says the Senator Didn't Represent His Constituents


Bernie Herpin of Colorado Springs defeated State Senate President John Morse in a recall election on Tuesday.

 

He knew it would be an uphill battle to win, but he gave it all he had.

 

"I've been invovled in Second Amendment issues over the last twenty years.  I founded the local Pikes Peak Firearms Coalition and I've been past President.  I've served twenty years in the military.  This was a constitutional issue of not responding to constituents."

 

Herpin expects to be sworn into office in early October and will serve the final year of John Morse's term.

 

Herpin plays to run for the seat next year.

Bend Man Pleads Guilty to Fraud in Federal Court


38 year old Mark Ellis admitted in federal court on Wednesday to making a fraudulent claim to the U.S. and to filing a false lein against a federal employee.

 

He apparently filed a false federal tax return and obtained a 327-thousand dollar refund based on that false return.

 

He also admitted he filed a false lein against the federal law enforcement officer investigating the false tax return to intimidate him.

 

Sentencing is set for January.

 

The maximum penalty for the two crimes is ten years in prison and a half million dollars in fines.

Local Reaction to Successful Recall of Two Colorado State Lawmakers Who Voted For Gun Control


The two democratic state senators lost their seats to thier republican challengers.

 

Kevin Starrett with the Oregon Firearms Federation says this sends an important message to lawmakers about enacting aggressive gun control measures.

 

"And I think the other important message and one that I'm really excited about, is grass root efforts.  They had no affiliated big groups or a lot of money, just a couple people with a lot of passion that got out there."

 

Don Thomas with the Central Oregon Shooting Sports Association says this is a big victory.

 

"The people have spoken in Colorado and they don't want anyone ramming gun control legislation down their throats or magazine capacity or any other gun control measure. These are two democratic people and Mayor Bloomberg put money in to help them win and the people have spoken."

 

Both sides campaigned aggressively in Colorado.  There was a lot of money from New York Mayor and gun control advocate Michael Bloomberg and from the National Rifle Association.

 

The Colorado lawmakers who were recalled had voted for  gun control legisaltion that would require background checks for private gun sales and limit ammunition magazines to 15 rounds.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Walden Remembers on the 12th Anniversary of 9 11


People are reflecting on how these coordinated terrorist attacks in New York and Washington D.C. have really affected not only this country, but the world.

 

U.S. Congressman Greg WAlden remembers that day well.

 

"We remember the Moms and Dads who went to work and never returend home.  We remember firefighters and emergency personnel who rushed into the buildings to save lives, only to lose theirs.  We remember the passengers on Flight 93 who took on the enemy.  We keep these brave heroes in our thoughts and prayers, not just today, but every day."

 

Hundreds gathered at the fallen World Trade Center Towers to remember the attacks this morning.

Bend LaPine School Board Fires the Principal of Bear Creek Elementary


After months of being in limbo, Matt Montoya was officially fired at Tuesday night's school board meeting.

 

Superintendent of Schools Ron WIlkinson had recommended that Montoya be fired and the board agreed.

 

School Board member Nori Juba said it wasn't just an isolated incident, but rather based on Montoya's job performance the last three years.

 

"This is not about an observation here or an observation there. not just over a period of a couple months, but over the course of three years."

 

The board said the board was due to poor peformance reviews, but they are prevented from talking about personnel issues.

 

Many parents who supported Montoya told the board following the decision, he held turn Bear Creek Elementary around.

Former Bend Pastor Who Grew Up in Syria Reacts to the Latest Developments


He addressed the nation Tuesday night saying he would first let diplomatic options play out, before taking any action.

 

Former Bend pastor, Roula Alkhouri grew up in Syria.

 

She is now a pastor in New York State and thinks negotiations and diplomacy should be the first options, not the military.  She's hopeful about a proposal to have an international body remove Syria's chemical weapons.

 

"I'm excited and it looks like there have been other ways, other options, not just miltiary options that wouldn't accomplish anything.  Let's remove the weapons.  I hope it works out."

 

Alkhouri's parents still live in Syria near Damascus.

 

She believes any american military intervention would just be adding to the problem.

 

She says too many countries are invovled already for their own political purposes.

Senator Merkley Reacts to Obama Address on Syria


Merkley in a statement said America should bring the world together to condemn and penalize Syria for this action.

 

He believes this is best pursued through international negotiations and diplomacy.

 

Senator Merkley says he is encouraged the U.S. and other nations are pursuing an international diplomatic strategy for ending Syrian access to chemical weapons.

St. Charles Breaks Ground on New Cancer Center


The groundbreaking was held on Tuesday and the project should be completed next summer.

 

The new center will house all cancer sevices under one roof.

 

Lisa Dobey, the Executive Director of hte St. Charles Foundation, says the new facility will help them serve the growing number of cancer patients -- as our population ages.

 

"You know it's a beautiful building, but more important is what's insdie -- the services. The building is our best effort, after designing a center after talking with patients, to meet the needs of people in a caring and compassionate way."

 

Construction on the new cancer center will start immediately.

 

A wing of the hospital will be dedicated to Margaret Schwab Denton, in appreication to the Les Schwab family's donation of one million dollars to the project.

U.S. Congressman Walden on Syria


President Obama will make his case to the american public tonight (Tue) on why he feels the threat of military action is necessary to prevent the Assad regime from using more chemical weapons against its citizens.

 

"Today after attending a classified briefing to listen very carefully to top adminsitration officials make their case in person -- they did not persuade me that the United States has a clear or achievable objective in Syria that can only be obtained thorugh military force.  And they have not made the case that dragging America into a civil war in the middle east is in  our national security interests.  Absent a direct threat to the United States or our allies and a clear goal and definition of victoy, I must oppose using military force in Syria.

 

The Unitd States shoud dwork with the international community to continue to pressure the Assad regime through sanctions and other diplomatic means.  And we should make it clear that a direct threat to the United States or our allies in the region will not be tolerated.  But at this time, I believe that using military force in Syria will make the situation in the middle east worse, not better and will not make our country safer."

 

President Obama will address the nation Tuesday night at 6 P.M.

Bend LaPine School Board to Decide Employment of Bear Creek Principal at Meeting Tonight


Matt Montoya has been in limbo about his employment for months.

 

Superintendent Ron Wilkinson is recommending that Montoya be terminated.

 

At 5 P.M. on Tuesday, the school board will meet in executive session with Montoya and then at 6 P.m, they will announce their decision.

 

Bear Creek parent Kathi James, is a big supporter of Montoya and will be there to defend him during the public comment period following their decision.

 

"We're really hoping the school baord will keep Montoya in the system, at some other school in the distict.  That's what we're hoping for at this point."

 

The school district has already assigned a new principal at Bear Creek Elementary for this year.

 

School board members claim Montoya has received three consecutive years of poor performance reviews.

Planned Prescribed Burn on Eastside of the Crooked River National Grassland on Tuesday


The area known as the "North Cyrus Project" is located between Highway 97 and 26 -- seven miles northeast of Terrebonne and 12 miles north of Redmond.  It's just south of the Cyrus Horse Camp.

 

No road closure are anticipated, but smoke will likely be visible from Redmond, Madras, Terrebonne and Highways 97 and 26.

St. Charles to Break Ground on New Cancer Center


A wing of the center will be named after Crook County resident, grandmother and philanthropist - Margaret Schwab Denton.

 

The honor is in appreciation of a one million dollar gift from her family and Les Schwab Tire Centers.

 

Margaret Schwab Denton died in 2005 at the age of 53 after a two year fight with colon cancer.

 

The groundbreaking is Tuesday at 5 P.M. at St. Charles Bend -- on the south side of the St. Charles campus.

 

Consturciton on the new cancer center shoudl be finished next summer and will combine St. Charles cancer services under one roof.

Representative Conger on Special Session


Governor Kitzhaber has notified Oregon House and Senate leaders to prepare for a special session on Monday September 30th.

 

He wants to reach a "grand bargain" on a PERS and revenue package.

 

Representative Conger ays he is reaady to head bck to Salem.

 

"Every indication from the Govenror is he's looking to call a special session.  My only point is I hope we have the votes to get this done.  If it's the same maneuvering, we're just wasting more time and we should have waited until February when we're going to be meeting anyway."

 

The Governor says the PERS and revenue package they are working on would restore teachers and school days in every district.

Jokinen Indicted for Sisters Area Murder


Josh Jokinen wil  face murder charges in the beating death of 78 year old Carolyn Burdick.

 

She was found dead in her Sisters area home on August 31st.

 

He will be formally charges on Tuesday September 10th.  The D.A. plans to request he continue to be held without bail.

 

The inditment alleges that the defendant was on supervision for a criminal offense and that the victim was in a particularly vulnerable state when the defendant murdered her.

 

 

City of Bend Responds to Complaints About Galveston Road Work


The intersection of Galveston and Riverside will now reopen on September 17th.

 

The Tumalo Avenue portion of the project will remain closed as will Riverside Boulveard South.

 

This change will allow for east-west traffic from downtown Bend to Galvetson.

 

City Manager Eric King decided to make the change after businesses along Galveston complained the closure was hurting their businesses.

Missing Bend Man


The wife of a missing Bend man is asking for the public's help.  Jonathan Sullivan-Shipley was last seen on his way to work last Thursday (9/6/12 and has been missing since then.  He is 42 years old, with brown hair, and brown eyes.  He is 5-9 and weighs around 125 pounds. He drives a light blue 1989 Toyota Corolla station wagon with four doors with the Oregon license plate number   Q-E-Y -2-8-2.  A missing persons report is on file with the Bend Police Department.  If you have any information about Jonathan Sullivan-Shipley, contact Bend Police.

Lots of Wildfires this year in Klamath Falls area


Klamath NF Takes on More Than 100 Wildfires So Far

Yreka, CA – In the world of wildfire management, they are called “lightning Busts.” However, this term begins to lose meaning when they come every week for over a month. Add two large fires totaling 36,000 acres under management of the Klamath National Forest, and you have one busy fire season in Siskiyou County.

“No one individual, module, department, district or even organization can be given full credit for this nearly unbelievable success, everyone worked as an amazing team,” said Forest Fire Chief, Ed Guzman. “Everybody from the Klamath National Forest would like to offer the deepest gratitude to CAL FIRE and local volunteer firefighters for all their hard work and success as well.”

“This has been a coordinated effort with all involved,” said Happy Camp Division Chief, Terry Walter. “We had two Forest Service fire crew members on light duty who have done a great job in dispatch, recreation folks running here and there to support the firefighters, office folks who have jumped in and helped with buying teams, finance, electronic record-keeping, planning and check in/out procedures.” This goes for all areas on the forest.

One week stands out as especially memorable. It was the last lighting storm on Aug. 20 and for a few days after the lightning just kept coming. Luckily this last storm was a “wet” one, bringing with it over an inch of rain in some areas.

KNF crews responded as usual to reports of smoke. Some stayed the night out in the elements after reaching fires through the rugged terrain for which the Klamath is famous. Even the three smoke-jumpers sent from Idaho had to hike three hours from their drop-point to reach the Clear Fire near Happy Camp. After that hike they spent the next few nights holding the fire, working in the rain to assure it was out. They called for no additional help.

Walter continued, “The success story here is more than three smoke-jumpers caught a fire, it is over the past four weeks forest crews have caught and managed over 100 fires. All have been kept small with no serious injuries.”

The Oak Knoll Division saw 19 fires, all kept to one-half acre or less. The Black Mountain fire required a four-hour hike for the crew to respond. They stayed out all night in the rain to get it under control. Division Chief Jim Allen said, “They looked like drowned rats when they got back in.”

Allen said it was a couple days before they could get back out and check some fires because the roads were so bad from the rain. The Oak Knoll area had one holdover fire come to life after three days of smoldering. “I’ve seen them lay down for two weeks, even over the whole winter burning inside a tree,” said Allen.

On the Goosenest Ranger District, crews responded to, contained and controlled more than 30 fires in July and August. One fire reported nearly a week after the latest lightning in the area was thought to have smoldered during the rain under a log before coming to life and putting up enough smoke to be seen. This is a good example of the ability of heavy fuels to hold heat from lightning until weather conditions and relative humidity become favorable to fire spread.

Klamath National Forest Fire crews are careful to keep a close watch on areas hit by lightning, as well as fires previously contained and controlled or even called out.

The Salmon-Scott Ranger District was busy with the Salmon River Complex and Butler Fire, but with some help from Incident Management Teams still responded to and kept all lightning starts small. Some were deep in rugged and remote country in the Marble Mountain Wilderness. The district had 32 total fires. All but two were caused by lighting. “It’s only the two human-caused fires that gave us any trouble,” said Battalion Chief, Mike Smith.

 

Prineville Man Missing for Weeks


Police are asking the public to help them locate a 56 year old Prineville man missing for several weeks.

 

Mackenzie "Mac" Wright was last seen near his home on southeast Knight Street 2 to 3 weeks ago - when he told some friends he "might" go gold mining. 

 

Captain Michael Boyd with Prineville Police describes Wright as a white male,  5 foot 11 and 200 pounds with gray hair, short gray beard and glasses.  Boyd says Wright does not drive and his bike is still at home; and he could possibly have health problems. 

 

An initial investigation does not indicate foul play.

 

If you have any information or have seen Wright - please contact Prineville Police (541-447-4168.)

Madras Double Fatal Crash suspect arrested on several charges


 

 

An 18 year old Madras man is facing serious charges after a fatal accident yesterday.

The Jefferson County Sheriff's Office says an 18 year old Madras man is under arrest in connection with a fatal drunk driving crash.

 

It happened yesterday evening in Madras and killed Lukas Daniel Hanson and his wife Dianne - both of Madras.

 

Authorities say the Hanson's were traveling southwest on Dover lane when their car was hit by a northbound Yukon driven by 18-year old isaul Alberto Ruiz Dominguez.

Ruiz-Dominguez have been charged with two counts of criminally Negligent Homicide, D-U-I-I, Driving while suspended and reckless driving.

he was treated for minor injuries and is now lodged in the jefferson county adult jail.

 

***********************************************************************

 

Here's the news release from Jefferson Co:

 

Press information release:

 

Double fatal Motor vehicle crash, Intersection of  SW Dover Ln. and SW Bear Dr. Jefferson County.

 

On September 5, 2013 at 5:15 p.m. a motor vehicle rash was reported to Frontier Regional Dispatch Center in Condon Oregon. The crash occurred at the intersection of SW Dover Ln. and SW Bear Drive in Jefferson County. Jefferson County Sheriff’s Deputies, Jefferson County EMS , and Jefferson County Fire were all dispatched to the scene. Oregon State Police assisted Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office on scene with the investigation and crash re construction. An investigation was conducted and the following information is being released at this time.

 

A 2002 White Chevrolet Cavalier driven by Lukas Daniel Hanson 32, of Madras Oregon  was East bound on SW Dover Ln. A passenger in the Chevy with Hanson was his wife Diane Elizabeth Hanson 34, of Madras. The Chevy driven by Hanson was traveling on SW Dover Ln. when it was struck in the passenger side by a northbound green 1999 GMC Yukon after the Yukon more likely than not  went through the intersection of SW Dover Ln. and SW Bear Dr. without stopping at a stop sign on SW Bear Dr.

 

The Yukon was occupied by four adult males and driven by Isaul Alberto  Ruiz Dominguez 18, of Madras Oregon. The investigation showed significant intrusion into the passenger compartment of the Chevy driven by Hanson. Sheriff’s Office Deputies, Fire personal, and EMS all arrived on scene at nearly the same time. Lukas Daniel Hanson and  Diane Elizabeth Hanson were pronounced dead at the scene of the crash. The investigation is ongoing,  however alcohol is believed to have been a factor in the crash.

 

The driver of the Yukon, Isaul Alberto  Ruiz Dominguez has been charged with two counts of Criminal Negligent Homicide, DUII, Driving While Suspended-Revoked Misdemeanor and Reckless Driving. After being treated and released from St. Charles Madras for minor injuries,  Dominguez was transported to the Jefferson County Adult Jail where he was booked and lodged.

 

 

Oregon Badlands Wilderness Plan available for Public Comment


Oregon Badlands Wilderness Plan and EA Available for Public Comment

Bend, Ore - The Prineville District, Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has developed a draft wilderness management plan and environmental assessment (EA) for the Oregon Badlands Wilderness, located about 14 miles east of Bend, Oregon and north of Highway 20. The plan will be available for public review and comment until Sept. 30.

BLM policy requires that a wilderness plan be completed for each designated wilderness. The plan provides guidance for preserving and enhancing wilderness values while offering opportunities for solitude and primitive recreation, as well as managing other land uses and activities. The EA analyzes four alternatives that range from a No Action (continue present management) Alternative to a “Human Activity Least Present” Alternative. The alternatives address issues such as the location and design of trailheads, the number and placement of trails, the role of Special Recreation Permits, and limitations or requirements for types of uses such as rock climbing, hiking with dogs, or hiking with stock.

BLM welcomes comments, especially information the EA should take into account, additional ideas, or other alternatives that should be considered. The EA and draft Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) are available at http://www.blm.gov/or/districts/prineville/plans/index.php.  If you would like a hardcopy, contact the Prineville BLM or stop by the office during business hours.  

Rather than voting for or against a specific alternative, the BLM asks that you tells us why you like or don’t like an alternative, or what you’d like to change, so we can be more responsive to concerns. Send your comments postmarked by Sept. 30, 2013, to one of the following addresses:

·         US Mail: Prineville BLM, 3050 NE Third Street., Prineville, OR 97754

·         Email:     BLM_OR_PR_FRONT_DESK@ blm.gov (attn: Badlands EA in the subject line)

·         FAX:      (541) 416-6798

-End-

Oregon Gasoline Prices this Week from Oregon AAA


Gas Prices Drift up Nationally but tick lower in Oregon

Concerns of violence in the Middle East put upward pressure on Crude Oil Prices

 

Pump prices are moving up or down a bit, depending on the market, but remain well below last year’s price.  The national average for regular unleaded adds a nickel this week to $3.59 a gallon, while Oregon’s statewide average drops two cents to $3.70.  Last year at this time, the national average was $3.83 and Oregon’s was $4.02.

 

See details in the attached news release.

 

Concerns over possible U.S. intervention in Syria have put upward pressure on crude oil prices.  West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil prices have now settled above $100 per barrel each day since the beginning of July due in large part to violence in Egypt, Libya and Syria.

 

But these increases are not translating into dramatic hikes at the pumps because of decreased demand due to the end of the summer driving season, a calm hurricane season, the impending switch-over to the less expensive winter blends of fuel, and increased domestic oil production.

 

What can consumers expect as we head into September?  And how might any military action in Syria impact crude oil and gas prices? Let me know if you need more info or would like to do an interview.

 

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