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Oregon News Update

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 19, 2018

 

The Oregon National Guard hosted a delegation from Vietnam's National Committee for Search and Rescue (VINASARCOM) this past week, as part of the ongoing State Partnership Program.

The visit included dialogues to discuss the relationship between VINASARCOM and the Oregon National Guard as emergency managers and to reaffirm their commitment to an enduring and constructive State Partnership. The delegation also toured Oregon National Guard, Oregon Office of Emergency Management, and U.S. Coast Guard facilities related to emergency management and emergency response.

The relationship between VINASARCOM and the Oregon National Guard as state partners and the lead military agencies for emergency management in their respective country and state was established in September 2011 with a memorandum of understanding to advance bilateral defense cooperation through U.S. Pacific Command (USPACOM) and Vietnam Bilateral Defense Dialogue (BDD).

The relationship recognizes that building and maintaining capabilities as emergency managers in times of Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR) is for the benefit of all countries and promotes stability, prosperity and domestic resiliency in the entire region.

The partnership between the Oregon National Guard and VINASARCOM was made official in November 2012 as part of the National Guard Bureau-sanctioned program. The State Partnership program complements broader U.S. engagement with Vietnam in pursuit of shared priorities such as disaster relief, education, health, trade and the environment. The program directly supports the broad national interests and security cooperation goals of the United States by engaging partner nations via military, socio-political, and economic conduits at the local, state, and national levels.

 

The Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife is hosting public meetings in Gold Beach and White City to discuss a comprehensive assessment and update of the 2007 Rogue River Spring Chinook Conservation Plan.

Gold Beach: Nov. 28 at Curry Public Library, 94341 3rd Street, Gold Beach from 6 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

White City: Dec. 3 at the Jackson County Auditorium, 200 Antelope Road, White City from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Enter through gate on Mosquito Lane off Table Rock Road.                          

Public comments will be taken at the meetings. Written comments about the draft comprehensive assessment and update can also be submitted by 5:00 p.m. on Dec. 16 to Daniel.J.Vandyke@state.or.us or Attn: Spring Chinook Review, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, 1495 E Gregory Road, Central Point, OR 97502.

The 2007 conservation plan, the first of its kind in Oregon, directs management of both hatchery and wild Rogue River spring Chinook. It sets conservation criteria and desired status goals for wild spring Chinook and defines the management strategies to reach desired status. This 2018 draft review is the first comprehensive assessment

(https://www.dfw.state.or.us/fish/CRP/docs/rogue_spring_chinook/Rogue_CHS_Comprehensive_Assessment_11-15-18.pdf) and summarizes progress toward attaining desired status.

Returns of Rogue spring Chinook are well above levels that trigger conservation concerns, despite challenging environmental conditions in recent years. The assessment documents an increase in abundance of the wild run since plan adoption, evidence that the early run component of the population is rebuilding, and compares Rogue returns to spring Chinook populations in neighboring rivers. 

 

Extensive work has been done on a variety of management actions to produce more spring Chinook, and the assessment details projects that are planned for future years including gravel placement in the Rogue River below William Jess Dam and in Big Butte Creek, and several changes in the hatchery program intended to produce more hatchery fish for harvest. Fishery managers are also proposing to add back additional opportunity to harvest wild spring Chinook seasonally while the population is building towards desired status, based on specific abundance triggers.

 

U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Mike Crapo today introduced bipartisan legislation to extend the Secure Rural Schools program by one year, through Fiscal Year 2019.

The Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act (SRS) was first introduced in 2000 to assist counties containing tracts of federally-owned land that is tax-exempt. 

Critical services at the county level have historically been funded in part with a 25 percent share of timber receipts from federal Forest Service lands, and a 50 percent share of timber receipts from federal Oregon and California Grant Lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management.  As those revenues have fallen due to reduced timber harvest, SRS payments have helped bridge the gap to fund rural schools, road maintenance, search and rescue efforts and other services.

Authorization for the Secure Rural Schools program is expiring.  The Wyden-Crapo bill would put in place a one-year extension while more long-term measures can be explored. 

“This program is critical to making sure schools, law enforcement, and road programs in rural communities in Oregon and around the country have the support they need for residents’ quality of life,” said Wyden, who co-authored the original SRS legislation with then-Sen. Larry Craig, R-Idaho.

“Congress cannot allow the payments from this essential program to lapse,” Wyden said. “It is imperative that it extend the Secure Rural Schools program and give rural counties the financial certainty they require, while Congress spends some quality time considering other options to support these counties moving forward.”

“Continuing this program is critical to our rural schools and road programs,” Crapo said. “A renewed SRS commitment coupled with a recovering and healthy timber economy will ensure a brighter future for students and those who enjoy the backcountry alike.”

The legislation is expected to draw wide bipartisan support.  Last year, 78 members of the Senate and U.S. House of Representatives wrote a letter to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) seeking to include the SRS program in the President’s budget recommendations.

 

 

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 16, 2018

 

COTTAGE GROVE MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO FEDERAL DRUG CHARGES AFTER HASH OIL EXPLOSION

Eric L. Scully, 35, of Cottage Grove, Oregon, pleaded guilty today to endangering human life and illegally possessing and manufacturing marijuana after a November 2017 butane honey oil (BHO) explosion in Cottage Grove.

“Manufacturing hash oil is extremely dangerous and poses a grave risk of injury or death to producers and unknowing, innocent victims. Federal authorities will continue targeting BHO producers and the illicit distribution networks providing them with butane gas. Together with our local partners, we will put an end to this severe public safety threat,” said Billy J. Williams, U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon.

“This investigation highlights the significant dangers that these extraction operations pose,” stated Keith Weis, DEA Special Agent in Charge of the Pacific Northwest Region. He further added, “This explosive event in Cottage Grove’s community was caused by highly reckless criminal activities surrounding butane honey oil (BHO) production, this time we were very lucky that lives were not lost.”

According to court documents, on November 16, 2017, the Cottage Grove Police and Fire Departments responded to an explosion at a storage facility in Cottage Grove. Officers found Scully at a local hospital where he was being treated for serious burn injuries. Investigators later learned that, at the time of the explosion, at least three other individuals were inside the facility.

The investigation determined that while manufacturing BHO, one of Scully’s machines, located in a room containing combustibles, caught fire. The machine and combustibles exploded, injuring Scully and placing the other individuals present at substantial risk of harm.

Scully faces up to 40 years in prison with a five-year mandatory minimum sentence, a $5 million fine and a mandatory four-year term of supervised release. The U.S. Attorney’s Office and defense counsel are jointly recommending a non-binding, 87-month sentence for Scully who will be sentenced on February 21, 2019 before U.S. District Court Judge Michael J. McShane.

 

 Democratic leaders on health care committees in the House and Senate today called on the Trump Administration to cease their continued attacks on affordable, comprehensive health care for Americans, following a proposed change to Section 1332 of the Affordable Care Act that would further open the door to junk insurance plans and undermine health care for people with pre-existing conditions.

“We write to express our serious concerns that the Administration’s new guidance on Section 1332 of the Affordable Care Act is inconsistent with congressional intent, will raise costs for consumers, and will undermine protections for individuals with pre-existing conditions,” the members wrote. “We urge you to rescind this guidance and work with stakeholders and Congress to give states the flexibility to innovate without raising costs or harming people with pre-existing conditions who need quality, affordable health care the most.” 

The letter, sent to Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Seema Verma, and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin comes as open enrollment for 2019 is underway and Americans attempt to shop for comprehensive, ACA-compliant plans while the Trump Administration is pushing people to buy junk insurance plans instead.

The letter was signed by Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee Ranking Member Patty Murray, D-Wash., Senate Aging Committee Ranking Member Robert P. Casey, D-Penn., House Energy and Commerce Ranking Member Frank Pallone, Jr., D-N.J., House Ways and Means Ranking Member Richard Neal, D-Mass., and House Education and the Workforce Ranking Member Bobby Scott, D-Va.

 

Get ready for the launch of ODFW’s new modernized licensing system on Dec. 1—hang on to your 2018 hunting or fishing license or take a photo of it now to make verification easy!

Once the new system launches on Dec. 1, hunters and anglers should use their Hunter/Angler ID# to verify their account in the new system, which can be done either online at MyODFW.com or at a license sale agent. The Hunter/Angler ID# number is printed on all ODFW licenses and tags and stays the same from year to year. It will be known as the “ODFW ID#” in the new licensing system.

Hunters and anglers can also enter a phone number or email associated with their ODFW account to verify it in the new system. Those who don’t have any of this information can visit a license sale agent or call ODFW Licensing at (503) 947-6101 for help.

Verifying your account will be an important step for hunters and anglers who have big game preference points or other certifications/special status in effect (such as a Pioneer License, Oregon Hunting and Fishing Disability Permit, Northwest Goose certification, etc.). Customers who have purchased a hunting, fishing, shellfish, combination or Sports Pac license in the last three years (2016-2018) should also verify their account in the new system. 

All others can choose “I am a new customer or have not purchased an annual license in the last 3 years” to open an account either at MyODFW.com or a license sale agent.

The old licensing system will stop operating at 6 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 30 so the new system can launch sometime on Dec. 1. Not all license sales agents may have their new systems up and running immediately on Dec. 1, so customers who need to purchase 2018 licenses/tags to hunt, fish, crab or clam the first weekend of December are encouraged to purchase needed documents before Nov. 30.

To find out more about the new ELS, visit https://myodfw.com/articles/odfws-new-electronic-licensing-system-els

 

On November 22, 2017, Richard Hillmann attended a day before Thanksgiving gathering at a friend’s house on Pleasant Valley Road in Josephine County.  He left the party between 8 - 9 PM in his green 1997 Toyota SR5 pickup (OR License VWT 361) and has not been seen since.

Hillmann's residence is within 5 miles of the Pleasant Valley gathering.

The Oregon State Police adopted the case in March of 2018 and has interviewed many witnesses, friends, and neighbors. Hillmann had few close associates and primarily stayed to himself.

Investigators believe that Hillmann is the victim of foul play and the person(s) involved were known to Hillman.

Oregon State Police investigators are asking for the public’s help in locating Hillman and/or his vehicle. If anyone has seen Hillmann, the vehicle,  or have any information regarding his disappearance they are asked to contact the Oregon State Police Southern Command Center at 541-776-6111 or *OSP and reference case number SP18-076662 / Detective John Anderson.

 

Who won a million dollars?   Someone who purchased a Powerball ticket on November 25, 2017 has, due to the Thanksgiving holiday, one extra day to claim their $1 million prize. But time is running out!
Lottery prizes are good one year from the date of the drawing. Since the one-year anniversary of the unclaimed $1 million Powerball ticket falls on Sunday, Nov. 25, Lottery rules stipulate that the prize can be claimed the next business day. In this case, Monday, Nov. 26. Since the prize is more than $50,000, it can only be claimed at the Lottery’s Salem Headquarters, at 500 Airport Road SE in Salem. The Salem office is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The ticket was sold in the Southeast Portland area, and the winning numbers are 08-13-27-53-54 with a Powerball of 04. The player matched five numbers but missed the Powerball number.
All unclaimed prizes go into the state’s Economic Development Fund. Each year approximately $5 million in unclaimed prizes goes into the fund. In fiscal year 2016, more than $5.3 million in unclaimed prizes were transferred to the fund. In fiscal year 2017, more than $5.4 million was transferred.
The Oregon Lottery also recently released new mobile phone applications for both iPhone and Android phones. One of the features of the new app, available at the Apple App Store and Google Play Store, is the ability to scan Lottery tickets to let players know if they’ve won a prize.
Lottery officials recommend that you always sign the back of your tickets with each Oregon Lottery game you play, to ensure you can claim any prize you may win. The Oregon Lottery reminds players to always sign the back of their Lottery tickets, regardless of the game. In the event of winning a jackpot, they should consult with a trusted financial planner or similar professional to develop a plan for their winnings. Prize winners of more than $50,000 should contact the Lottery office to schedule an appointment to claim their prize.
Since the Oregon Lottery began selling tickets on April 25, 1985, it has earned more than $11 billion for economic development, public education, state parks and watershed enhancements. For more information on the Oregon Lottery visit www.oregonlottery.org

 

Today Oregon Housing and Community Services (OHCS) released the draft Breaking New Ground: the OHCS Statewide Housing Plan, a five-year look at the agency’s priorities, goals, and strategies in ensuring a stable and affordable housing landscape.

Drafted after combining robust statewide outreach and partner input sessions with quantitative data analysis, the document reflects what is needed to address the housing and service needs of both rural and urban communities across Oregon. OHCS will seek feedback over the course of the next month to clarify strategies and strengthen the Plan.

Director Margaret Salazar will be releasing a video interview later this month, ahead of five public meetings to introduce the draft plan and seek feedback on the strategies. The five meeting dates and locations are listed below.

  • La Grande – November 29th 1 PM – 3 PM at Cook Memorial Library
  • Eugene – December 10th 10 AM -12 PM at a location to be determined
  • Redmond – December 11th 12 PM – 1 PM at Redmond City Hall
    • Part of the Housing For All meeting
  • Forest Grove – December 11th 1 PM – 3 PM at Forest Grove City Hall
  • Newport – December 13th 1 PM – 3 PM at Oregon Coast Community College

Additional details about the Statewide Housing Plan, including details about 2017 outreach and county profiles, are available online.

 

High-dose flu vaccine reducing hospitalizations in seniors, study shows

Researchers examined vaccine with four times antigen level of typical vaccine

PORTLAND, Ore.—High-dose influenza vaccine reduces hospitalization for the virus among Oregon seniors, a new Oregon Health Authority study has found.

The study of more than 144,000 seniors, ages 65 and older, living in the Portland metropolitan area showed that high-dose flu vaccine was 31 percent more effective at preventing senior flu-related hospitalizations than the standard-dose flu vaccine during the 2016-2017 season, according to the study appearing in the scientific journal Vaccine.

A high-dose vaccine contains four times the antigen of a standard flu vaccine. Antigens are the molecular structures on the surfaces of viruses that trigger the body’s immune response. Seniors typically have a weaker immune response to standard influenza vaccines than younger adults, and benefit from vaccines that are high-dose or "adjuvanted" specifically for seniors.

Putting another chemical, an adjuvant, into the vaccine helps create a stronger reaction to the antigen of the vaccine. Seniors should get a vaccine that is intended to boost their immune response.

Steve Robison, epidemiologist in the Oregon Immunization Program, is the lead study author. Co-author is Anne Thomas, M.D., public health physician in the Acute and Communicable Disease Prevention Section. They say protecting vulnerable seniors during flu season each year is a constant challenge.

"Seniors are at greater risk of severe illness from flu," Thomas said. "What’s more, typical flu vaccine doses aren’t adequately protective for many seniors. We wanted to know whether a widely used high-dose flu vaccine would benefit a large population of seniors, particularly in reducing hospitalizations."

For their study, Robison and Thomas focused on seniors who reported receiving a flu vaccine by Dec. 11, 2016, which is roughly four weeks before the typical onset of substantial local flu disease activity. It also ensured that seniors who received the vaccine had enough time to achieve full "seroconversion," which is when flu antibodies develop and become detectable.

The study population consisted of 78,602 seniors who received high-dose flu vaccine and 65,705 seniors who received the standard vaccine dose.

Robison and Thomas found that senior use of high-dose flu vaccine, compared with standard-dose vaccine, was associated with a "substantial reduction in the risk of hospitalization" with laboratory-confirmed influenza.

"The message is: do not give the standard flu vaccine to seniors. Give the high-dose vaccine or adjuvanted vaccine," Robison said. He said that while the adjuvanted vaccine was not addressed in the study, it also is a good alternative to the standard-dose vaccine for seniors.

Robison explained that because adult influenza is not a reportable disease in the United States, only limited data on actual amounts of disease exist. However, due to funding from CDC’s Emerging Infections Program, the OHA’s Acute and Communicable Disease Prevention program tracks influenza hospitalizations in the Portland metro area.

"We are fortunate here in Oregon to have accurate data on flu hospitalizations," Robison said. "Coupled with a strong immunization registry in our state, we have the ability to use our hospitalization and vaccination data to figure out how well vaccines are working. In this case, our study tells us at least one of these vaccines may be working better than we think."

 

THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 2018

 

From Oregon Secretary of State, Dennis Richardson

We have been alerted by the Multnomah County Elections office that two individuals turned in 97 ballots (92 Multnomah County, 4 Clackamas County, 1 Washington County) on Wednesday November 7. It is illegal to count these ballots since they arrived after 8:00pm on Election Day. The voters of these ballots have been mailed a notification. 

ORS 254.470(6) provides that if a person returns a ballot for an elector, they must deposit the ballot at the county elections office, or an official dropbox, not later than two days after receiving the ballot or by 8:00pm on Election Day, whichever comes first.

In cooperation with the Multnomah County Elections office, the Secretary of State has opened an investigation to determine the facts and review the evidence to ensure all parties involved receive due process. Once we conclude our investigation and make a final determination, we will be happy to answer any questions.

 

Oregon Adds 4,600 Jobs in October

In October, Oregon’s nonfarm payroll employment grew by 4,600 jobs, following a revised gain of 4,700 jobs in September. Monthly gains in October were widespread, with nine of the top 13 industries adding jobs, led by professional and business services (+1,500 jobs); wholesale trade (+1,000 jobs); and government (+1,000 jobs). Only two major industries cut jobs substantially in October: private educational services (-800 jobs) and financial activities (-900 jobs).

Oregon’s unemployment rate was 3.8 percent in October, the same as in August and September. These were Oregon’s lowest unemployment rates since comparable records began in 1976. The U.S. unemployment rate held steady at 3.7 percent in both September and October.

Oregon’s nonfarm payroll employment increased by 38,100 jobs, or 2.0 percent, since October 2017. In that time, construction remained the fastest growing industry, with a gain of 8,200 jobs, or 8.2 percent. Health care and social assistance added 6,200 jobs, or 2.6 percent. Professional and business servicesalso grew rapidly, adding 5,400 jobs, or 2.2 percent. However, three of Oregon’s major industries slowed recently, with gains close to one percent since October 2017: financial activities (+1,000 jobs, or 1.0%); leisure and hospitality (+1,700 jobs, or 0.8%); and retail trade (+1,200 jobs, or 0.6%). And two industries declined over the year: information ( 100 jobs, or -0.3%) and private educational services(-800 jobs, or -2.2%). 

Over the past two years, retail trade has seen multiple store closures and the bankruptcies of several major national retailers. These closures and other factors contributed to a moderation in overall retail employment growth. Since October 2016, Oregon’s retail employment grew at an annual rate of only 1.0%, which was about half the growth rate of Oregon’s total nonfarm payroll employment. Somewhat counterbalancing retail’s slowing was moderate growth in wholesale trade (up 2.8% in the past 12 months) and in transportation, warehousing, and utilities, which grew consistently close to a three percent annual rate over the past six years. 

 

On November 12th, 2018, at about 4:13 p.m., Medford Police responded to a male who was found deceased in an irrigation ditch, near Biddle Road and Stevens Street. The male was identified as Ryan Michael Snyder, 39 years old. 

The scene initially looked suspicious and investigators treated the case as a homicide until proven otherwise. On 111418, at 9:30 a.m., an autopsy of Snyder was conducted by Dr. Olson, Deputy State Medical Examiner. The autopsy determined the manner of death to be ACCIDENTAL. 

The exact cause of death remains under investigation, but Dr. Olson noticed hypothermic changes to the body. Dr. Olsen is awaiting results of toxicology to determine the exact cause. There was no evidence of homicidal violence. Investigators noted the low temperature the previous evening to be 25 degrees, and believed he was out in the elements with light clothing during that time period. 

 

State to announce 10 communities selected for Operation Welcome Home

Operation Welcome Home Launch will take place November 15th at 2 PM at Seavey Meadows in Corvallis.

SALEM, OR – Oregon Housing and Community Services (OHCS) will formally announce ten communities selected to participate in Operation Welcome Home tomorrow at 2 PM. OHCS, in partnership with the Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs (ODVA), will support communities by providing technical assistance in their initiative to end veterans’ homelessness. The selected communities will gather for the Operation Welcome Home Launch at Seavey Meadows (1099 NE Sorrel Place Corvallis, OR 97330), a veterans’ affordable housing community funded with state resources.

“It’s unacceptable that any veteran would experience homelessness,” said OHCS Director Margaret Salazar, “but we know that veterans are more likely to face these challenges. Operation Welcome Home centers the goal of ending veterans’ homelessness and uses national best practices and clear goalposts to advance that goal. The ten communities selected demonstrate a desire and ability to address veterans’ homelessness, and we are proud to support them in this effort.”

Operation Welcome Home is a campaign to address veterans experiencing homelessness that will run from November 2018 to May 2019. This initiative is supported through Measure 96 lottery funds allocated by the 2017 Legislature, and represents the first stage in supporting local communities as they work to end veteran homelessness. Throughout the course of this campaign, OHCS and ODVA will provide communities the support needed to house 500 veterans across Oregon. This investment will not only support local community efforts, but it will create a lasting infrastructure to make an impact well into the future.

“Veterans and their families deserve stable housing,” said ODVA Director Kelly Fitzpatrick. “This technical assistance will help communities create a by-name list of veterans experiencing homelessness that will allow multiple services providers to coordinate and leverage resources to help each veteran experiencing homelessness. This approach ensures we are looking at the person experiencing homelessness rather than another statistic.”

The selected communities are listed below. Additional details about Operation Welcome Home available online.

  • NeighborImpact and Central Oregon Veterans Outreach: Crook, Deschutes and Jefferson Counties
  • Mid-Willamette Valley Community Action Agencies: Marion and Polk Counties
  • ACCESS: Jackson County
  • Yamhill Community Action Partnership: Yamhill County
  • Oregon Coast Community Action: Coos and Curry Counties
  • United Community Action Network: Douglas and Josephine Counties
  • Community Action Partnership of Oregon: Baker, Grant, Harney, Hood River,
  • Klamath, Lake, Malheur, Sherman, Union and Wasco Counties
  • Community Services Consortium: Benton, Lincoln and Linn Counties
  • Clackamas County Social Services: Clackamas County
  • Lane County Human Services Commission: Lane County

 

Prescribed Fire Notice - The Fremont-Winema NF, Bly Ranger District will continue prescribed fire operations on the West Spodue RX (underburn) 15 miles north of Beatty, OR. The planned acres are 250 as conditions allow. The duration of activity will be several days and will be visible from Hwy 140. 

 

U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and U.S. Rep. Peter DeFazio today announced Senate passage of additional protections for the lifesaving Coast Guard air facility in Newport, Oregon that were included in the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2018.

“This facility is critical to the Coast Guard’s search-and-rescue operations. It can make the difference between life and death both for central Oregon Coast residents and visitors to our state’s beaches,” said Wyden. “Today’s action is a positive step forward, but I won’t stop fighting until we have a permanent solution to keep this essential rescue station open.”

“This reauthorization greatly strengthens our ability to keep lifesaving Coast Guard helicopters on the job in Newport,” Merkley said. “This victory will preserve a critically important asset for our coastal communities and visitors.”

“It is impossible to overstate how critical having search and rescue helicopters nearby is to Oregon’s fishing industry, coastal visitors and residents. The Newport air station handles half the emergency calls on the Central Oregon Coast and without it, people in imminent danger will have to wait for a helicopter from North Bend or Astoria to rescue them. It is imperative that the Newport air facility stay open, and I will continue to do everything I can here in Washington D.C. to ensure we have a permanent resolution to this problem,” said DeFazio, Ranking Member of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure and lead Democratic sponsor and negotiator in the House of Representatives on the Coast Guard Authorization Act.

The lawmakers have tirelessly advocated to keep the Newport air facility open. It is one of Oregon’s few deep-draft ports and is home to the state’s largest commercial fishing fleet and several National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration vessels.

 

The State of Oregon has launched a new optional energy-efficient code to help achieve increased energy efficiency in commercial structures.   This week, the Oregon Zero Code Efficiency Standard was approved by the Building Codes Structures Board and adopted by the Building Codes Division for use throughout Oregon.

The code is based on nationally developed standards and establishes a predictable and efficient path for achievable energy-efficiency improvements. Adopting fully vetted, cost-effective, and federally recognized standards provides Oregon businesses with predictability and creates a more efficient regulatory framework.

“This continues Oregon’s national leadership in providing innovative construction regulatory options. The adoption of the Oregon Zero Code Efficiency Standard creates a framework for ongoing improvement in energy efficiency, while providing predictability and regulatory efficiency to Oregon businesses,” Building Codes Division Administrator Mark Long said. “Providing businesses with an additional regulatory path helps Oregon meet our overall energy-efficiency goals.”

The code is a statewide alternate method, which provides additional options for Oregon businesses.

“Oregon is fortunate to have the ability to make these efficient options available to industry working through our advisory boards,” said Long. “This is another example of regulatory success in Oregon.”

The code is based on a federally recognized energy standard that establishes robust, but achievable, construction standards that align with Oregon’s energy goals. The standard also  includes a fully programmed online tool, allowing builders to enter their construction choices for ventilation, windows, and other elements in order to confirm compliance with Oregon code.

Builders who want to use the Oregon Zero Code Efficiency Standard will document compliance with the standard using an Oregon-specific tool and Architecture 2030’s Zero Code Energy Calculator to help designers identify potential renewable energy sources to improve efficiency. The information will be recorded as part of the permit file for the building.

 

The County Opportunity Grant Program Advisory Committee will meet 9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Nov. 19 at the Hampton Inn & Suites, 510 Hawthorne Ave. SE, Salem. The meeting is open to the public.

The bulk of the agenda will feature County Opportunity Grant Program (COGP) applicants presenting their proposed projects to the committee for review. Project presentations will run 9:40 a.m. – 2 p.m. For specific presentation times, refer to the full meeting agenda on the grant program website.

The committee will evaluate and score all applications and create a priority ranking list of projects to be funded. The priority ranking list will be forwarded to the Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission for final review and approval.

For more information about the COGP, visit oprdgrants.org.

Individuals who need special accommodations to attend the meeting must contact Mark Cowan, OPRD grant program coordinator, 503-986-0591 or mark.cowan@oregon.gov, at least three days in advance.

 

 

The traditional Dec. 1 opening of the commercial Dungeness crab season will be delayed until at least Dec. 16 along the entire Oregon coast as testing shows crabs are too low in meat yield. 

The ocean commercial Dungeness crab season in Oregon is targeted to open Dec. 1, but can be delayed to ensure a high-quality product to consumers and avoid wastage of the resource. Crab quality testing in early November showed that the majority of test areas did not meet the criteria for a Dec. 1 opening. The delayed opening will allow for crab to fill with more meat. 

A second round of crab quality testing will occur in late November or early December, and the results will be used to determine if the season should open Dec. 16, be further delayed, or be split into areas with different opening dates.

Due to elevated levels of domoic acid, crab closures are currently in effect from Cape Blanco to the California border. This closure applies to both recreationally and commercially harvested crab from bays and estuaries, and on beaches, docks, piers, and jetties. Recreational crab harvesting outside of these areas remains open in bays and estuaries, and on beaches, docks, piers, and jetties.

In conjunction with the delayed ocean commercial season, commercial harvest of Dungeness crab in Oregon bays that are currently open will close at 12:01 a.m. Dec. 1, but may reopen if the ocean commercial fishery opens in December. Recreational harvest of Dungeness crab in the ocean off Oregon will open Dec. 1 as scheduled in areas where there are no Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) health advisories.

 

The Oregon State Marine Board recognized marine law enforcement from around the state for seven water-related rescues during their post-season Marine Law Enforcement Conference, held in Redmond on October 16.  The Marine Board also recognized individuals for outstanding service that went above and beyond in helping improve boating safety on Oregon’s waterways.

Life-Saving Recognition

The agency’s annual lifesaving awards recognize personnel who have exhibited heroism, going above and beyond the call of duty, by directly attempting to rescue one or more persons involved in a water-related incident.  These awards are open to all law enforcement, boating safety volunteers, and other marine partners.  Seven rescue events occurred during the boating season with nine lives saved.    

On January 22, OSP Trooper Aaron Miller was conducting a boat patrol with the Oregon State Police on Tillamook Bay.  Trooper Miller was actively monitoring the dive cockle fishery in the bay due to reports of violations.  On this day, Trooper Miller was invited to conduct a boat patrol with Deputy Paul Fournier who is assigned with the Sheriff’s Office Marine Patrol.  The officers located a dive boat in an area commonly known as Crab Harbor and they noticed visible violations.  The officers tied up to the dive boat and were talking with the captain when one of the divers showed signs of distress and fell unconscious underwater.  Due to quick thinking by another diver to drop the gear, the diver in distress was able to surface.  The officers recovered the unconscious diver, blue in color, and not breathing.  As Deputy Fournier operated the boat in an effort to get the diver to medical personnel, Trooper Miller started chest compressions.  While on-route to the docks, the diver regained consciousness and started breathing on his own.  The diver was transferred to medical personnel immediately upon arriving at the docks. 

On March 27, shortly after midnight, Deputy Ron Osborn and Deputy Scott McLellan received a call of a car stopped and blocking one of the eastbound lanes of the Steel Bridge in Portland.  The Portland Police Bureau asked the Multnomah County River Patrol to do an area check in case there was a jumper.  No one had been seen attempting to jump from the bridge.  From the marine patrol boathouse, it took nearly 30 minutes for the deputies to arrive on-scene.  Once the deputies arrived, they were able to spot a face and hands sticking out of the water.  The person was located next to an ocean-going grain ship at the grain terminal downriver from the Steel Bridge. 

They pulled next to the person and were able to get him on the boat, then transported him to the Fire Bureau dock where they met AMR medics.  The person was unresponsive by that time and was transported to OHSU where he regained consciousness and survived his injuries.  Rescues of this type are very difficult in the dark under quickly changing wind and weather conditions.  Deputy Osborn and McLellan’s keen vision and expertise helped locate the person just in time.

In August, Lane County received a call of a water rescue on Fern Ridge Reservoir.  There were six family members that were boating and enjoying their afternoon when tragedy hit.  A nine-year-old child called to report that their mother and father were both in the water and that they were in critical need of help.  The child also reported that the father was underwater.  Deputy Guy Pease and Deputy Jon Bock were on Fern Ridge at the time of the call but on the other side of the reservoir.  The conditions were very rough, with three-foot swells and high wind conditions.  Another call came in that an eight-year-old and 11-year-old were also in the water.  Deputies Pease and Bock responded from across the lake and began the search.  They quickly spotted two boys who were hysterical and struggling to keep their heads above the large waves.  One of the boys was screaming that his dad was dead.  Both of the boys were pulled from the water and brought to safety.  Deputy Pease saw the mother in the water, holding the father.  The mother had one arm through a life jacket and was struggling to hold onto the father.  The mother was hysterical and kept sinking below the surface.  Deputies brought the father onto the boat and Deputy Bock began chest compressions.  Deputy Pease grabbed a CPR mask and took over compressions as Deputy Bock pulled the mother into the boat.  All of the individuals involved were taken to the boat launch at Orchard Point.  Regrettably, the father was unable to be revived, but the heroic actions of Deputies Pease and Bock, the other three people were rescued. 

On September 10, Deputy Mike Cahill from the Morrow County Sheriff’s Office dove into the Columbia River to rescue a suicidal woman.  Deputy Cahill responded to a call at 3:23 pm after launching his patrol boat roughly ½ mile downstream from Channel Marker 40 near Boardman.  Deputy Cahill spotted a woman in the water about 50-75 yards out.  There were three to four-foot swells with visible whitecaps, as she struggled to keep her head above the water, moving further out into the river.  There wasn’t time to deploy a boat, so Deputy Cahill immediately dove into the water in an attempt to rescue the woman.  The woman went underwater several times and didn’t resurface, but not before Deputy Cahill was able to get a visual on her and get close enough to grab her by one of her elbows.  He identified himself and told her he wanted to take her back to shore.  She tried to break loose, but the deputy was able to maintain good contact with her.  As Deputy Cahill was attempting to get the woman back to shore, she begged him to let her go.  Deputy Cahill spoke calmly and reassured her as he swam them both back to shore.  The woman repeated she wanted to be let go and tried to escape, but Deputy Cahill didn’t give up.  He was working against the water, the wind, the strong current and the woman he was attempting to rescue.  Deputy Cahill was able to swim her to shallow water where Boardman Police entered the water to assist.

On July 18, a man attempted to take his own life by jumping from the Fremont Bridge into the Willamette River, more than 380 feet below.  On any other day, this would be a short and sad story, but just a half a mile away was River Deputy Kevin McAfee from the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office River Patrol.  As soon as the call was broadcast, McAfee immediately motored to the location –by himself.  There’s a brief moment after a person enters the water where the body’s survival instinct and body chemistry take over.  If a person is conscious and had the ability to move at all, they will automatically try to breathe.  Those moments are fleeting as a person’s body is instantly impacted by cold water shock, in addition to any severe injuries that can lead to drowning.  After 20 years with the sheriff’s office marine patrol and several years of service on the Dive Team, and Search and Rescue, McAfee knew this reality all too well.  Portland Police, Portland Fire, and the Coast Guard were all notified and responding to the call.  The patrol boat, “Munson” is equipped with cameras and recorded the event as McAfee approached the Fremont Bridge in search of the man.  The camera was not immediately able to detect the man in the river.  Portland Police located the man’s vehicle on the bride, giving McAfee a better idea of where to begin looking, just past the center of the bridge.  The traffic unit was able to spot the man, struggling in the water toward the middle of the river.  The man had very little capacity to hold on to life.  McAfee spotted the man and using extreme skill and care, adjusted the boat speed, dropped the front gate on the boat and pulled the man on board –with perfect timing.  This is exceptionally difficult to do, let alone solo.  The Portland Fire Bureau boat 6 Rescue Craft personnel arrived moments later, boarded the boat and started rescue medical attention.  They took the man to a waiting ambulance and on to the hospital.  The medical lifesaving procedures performed by fire, ambulance medics, nurses and doctors were equally as miraculous and deserving or recognition.  But if not for Deputy McAfee’s dedication to protect and serve the public, this man may not be alive today.  

Marine law enforcement officers from 32 county sheriff’s offices, tribal representatives and the Oregon State Police train for swift water rescue, boat maneuvering, and a myriad of other life-saving scenarios each year during the Marine Board’s Law Enforcement Academy.  Academy training, in addition to the Marine Board’s drift and jet boat training schools, has proven to be well worth the time and effort in the number of lives saved each year.  

The Marine Board is sincerely grateful for every marine officer who puts their own lives at risk every time they patrol Oregon’s waterways and the thousands of people they impact through their presence.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

KEYWORDS:   Oregon News, News Update State Of Oregon, Southern Oregon News, Local Oregon News, Daily Oregon News,  Oregon Area News, State Of Oregon News Update

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