Klamath Basin News, Wednesday, June 7 – Klamath County Library’s “No Politics Rule” Battle Could Result in Funding Loss from State of Oregon

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Wednesday, June 7, 2023

Klamath Basin Weather
Today
Sunny with a high of 83 but expect showers and thunderstorms likely, mainly after 5pm. Some storms could be severe, with hail, gusty winds, and heavy rain. Overnight, more showers and thunderstorms possible, low of 53.
 
Thursday
A slight chance of showers, then a chance of showers and thunderstorms after 11am. Some of the storms could produce small hail and heavy rain. Partly sunny, with a high near 78. Overnight, a 50% chance of showers, low around 53.
Friday
A slight chance of showers, then a chance of showers and thunderstorms after 11am. Partly sunny, with a high near 75.
Saturday
A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after 11am. Mostly sunny, with a high near 78.
Sunday
A slight chance of showers and thunderstorms after 11am. Mostly sunny, with a high near 82.
Monday
A chance of showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 83.
 

Today’s Headlines

 
The “no politics” rule of thumb for the Klamath County Library might result in a financial loss of more than $40,000 to the library due to noncompliance with Oregon law.

After an unknown number of county residents complained to county commissioners about the political nature of topics discussed during a social justice book club, library director Nathalie Johnston said one of the commissioners instructed her to remove the book club from library programming April 18.

Two of the county’s three elected officials, Commissioners Dave Henslee and Kelley Minty, said they were unaware of instructions given to end the book club.

In a meeting with library administration three weeks later, Commissioners Dave Henslee and Derrick DeGroot said they do not approve of taxpayer funding spent on staff to mediate discussions.

The Klamath County Library System District (KCLSD) sought guidance from the State Library Support and Development Services department, expressing concerns over potential loss of additional programming as well as state-funded provisions.

A work session for library administration and county officials is scheduled for 3 p.m., today (Wednesday) in room 214, 305 Main St. The meeting will not provide time for public comment. The county commissioners’ business meeting held at 1 p.m. on Tuesday, June 6, 2023, offers a time for community members to enter public comments.

 

Sky Lakes Medical Center recently awarded a $2,500 grant to the Assistance League of Klamath Basin.

According to a press release, the grant is “to be used exclusively for supporting [the league’s] signature philanthropic program, Operation School Bell.”

The funds will be used to serve more of the Klamath Basin’s children who need help to purchase school clothing, the release states.

According to the release, the assistance league’s Operation School Bell “is aimed at addressing the basic issues of self-worth, health and education. The program helps children to be successful, maintain school attendance and enhances their self-esteem.”

The release states the grant’s funds will help students in kindergarten through 12th grade access clothing and other necessities.

According to the release, by the league providing essential needs, “it transforms lives, strengthens our community and families flourish. The Assistance League of Klamath Basin plays a crucial role in helping the children of our community.”

For more information, go to www.klamathbasinassistanceleague.org.

 

Klamath Health Partnership has opened a new clinic designed to increase access to high-quality health care. Pine Street Open Door, operating at 403 Pine St., is designed to foster a healthier and more vibrant community.

Patients will be able to receive primary care, behavioral health, x-ray and lab services, and will soon be able to access the organization’s first physical therapy suite.

Pine Street Open Door also serves as the hub for KHP’s patient outreach department, which offers
transportation, Oregon Health Plan assisting, and community health worker services.

Klamath Health Partnership will celebrate the clinic’s grand opening at 4 p.m. on June 15. CEO
Amanda Blodgett and the Klamath Health Partnership staff will welcome guests and provide
tours of the state-of-the-art facility. Open to the public, the event will include a ribbon-cutting
ceremony and a presentation by Todd Kepple of the Klamath County Museum on the history of
the building.

 

For high school students aspiring to one day follow in their instructors’ footsteps, there is no longer a wait to get started on higher education pursuits thanks to an expanding Teacher Education Pathway Program partnering between the Klamath County School District (KCSD) and Klamath Community College (KCC).

 KCC’s Teacher Education Pathway Program began in 2021 in order to provide Dual Credit pathway opportunities for future educators. Currently established at Mazama and Henley high schools, students can begin taking education courses through KCC as juniors and seniors toward a Paraeducator Pathway Certificate. Starting with fall term, Lost River and Bonanza high schools will also begin this pathway program with KCC.

As a certified paraeducator, graduates can work as an instructional school employee under supervision of teachers and other professional practitioners providing direct services for children, youth, and their families. This can include tutoring, classroom management assistance, parent-related activities, and instructional support services.

The Paraeducator Career Pathway Certificate is a 17-credit program that also serves as a precursor for an Associate of Applied Science: Education – Paraeducator Emphasis degree. In 2022, four high school students earned their Paraeducator Career Pathway Certificate the same time as their high school diploma, while 12 other students enrolled at KCC for fall term to pursue their associate degree as a paraeducator.

Four students received scholarships through an Oregon Department of Education – Education Advancement Council “Grow Your Own Educator” grant, which supports students and paraprofessionals enrolled in teacher preparation programs. Five Dual Credit program high school students are on track to graduate later this month with both their high school diploma and KCC Paraeducator Career Pathway Certificate.

 

Oregon Department of Energy (ODOE) recently announced recipients of its Community Renewable Energy Program grants, awarding nearly $1 million in funding to Klamath Community College for an expanded solar array at its new KCC Apprenticeship Center.

One of 39 recipients across Oregon totaling $12 million in funds dispersed, KCC will receive $999,424 to construct an expanded rooftop photovoltaic array, battery storage system, and inverter to provide supplementary power to the Apprenticeship Center and adjacent electric vehicle charging stations on campus.

This expands the number of photovoltaic panels already utilized by the facility, which had its grand opening last month after a multi-year fundraising and construction effort to complete the $11.5 million structure. Once completed, the rooftop solar array at KCC’s Apprenticeship Center is estimated to be able to produce 500 megawatts annually via 744 photovoltaic panels. This greatly expands KCC’s solar energy generation capacity, provides on-campus energy storage, and improves emergency power resilience for essential community and regional partners – including the potential of serving as a basecamp of operations for public safety responders during emergencies. KCC previously served as base camp of operations during the 2021 Bootleg Fire.

The KCC Apprenticeship Center serves as a hub of skilled workforce training, a key to regional growth and infrastructure development for the Klamath Basin and beyond as demand continues to grow for skilled labor – particularly in construction. Programs already underway at the KCC Apprenticeship Center include manufacturing-related apprenticeship programs such as welding, carpentry, cement mason, drywall, electrical, interior/exterior specialist, millwright, painter, and plumbing. Additionally, the facility is also utilized for fire and emergency response, criminal justice and law enforcement, commercial truck driving, heavy equipment training programs, and KCC’s High School Equivalency Program (HEP)

 

For the first time since 2002, Oregon Tech softball players were recognized as part of the 2023 College Sports Communicators (formerly CoSIDA) NAIA Academic All-America® team.

Pitcher Kacie Schmidt and shortstop Kaila Mick were named to the first-team, with outfielder Lexi Klum selected to the second team.

The trio doubles the all-time recipients for the Lady Owls program – joining Leah Azevedo, who was picked in 2002, along with Meagan Webber, who earned the award in 2001 and 2002, along with being selected as the College Division Academic All-American of the Year.

To earn the distinction, a student-athlete must compete in more than 50-percent of the games during a season and be a starter or key reserve, be at least a sophomore in academic standing and maintain a 3.50 or greater cumulative grade point average. Those nominated by their school’s sports information director and selected to their respective All-District team are placed on the final Academic All-America® ballot, in which a panel of SID’s select the final 12-person first-team and 12-person second team.

Schmidt, a sophomore civil engineering major from Beaverton, finished the season with a 29-2 record – tying the single-season record for wins, earning Cascade Conference Pitcher of the Year honors and is a candidate for the NAIA All-America team. 

Mick, a junior dental hygiene major from Klamath Falls, had a banner year, hitting .387 with 21 doubles and 48 RBI, setting a new single-season record for runs scored. She earned All-CCC honors for a third-straight year and is a candidate for the NAIA All-America team.

Klum, a junior applied psychology major from Tigard, had a breakout season, hitting .341 with 44 RBI, setting a new single-season record for triples. She was honored earlier this season as a member of the All-CCC team.

CSC NAIA Academic All-America Teams

First Team

P             Ella Schouten (Columbia), Kacie Schmidt (Oregon Tech)

C             Sydney Pelaez (Georgia Gwinnett
IF            Haley Loffer (College of Idaho), Kaila Mick (Oregon Tech), Claire Buckley (Arizona Christian), Payton Lewis (Concordia-Michigan), Camryn Scott (St. Mary of the Woods)

OF          Katie Cronin (Milligan), Emily Prai (Midland), Shannon McAlinden (Concordia-Michigan)

DP          Kate Pendleton (Milligan)

Second Team

P             Abby Kraemer (Dordt), Lexi Duff (Oklahoma City), Aliyah Rincon (Midland)

C             Ashton Whitman (Indiana Wesleyan)

IF            Katie Smith (Central Baptist), Carly Oliver (Cumberlands), Elisa Koshy (Indiana Wesleyan)

OF          Kylee Pettit (Mount Vernon Nazarene), Lexi Klum (Oregon Tech), Kaylie Sippel (St. Francis)

DP          Athena Wheeler (Columbia)

 

The Leadership Klamath Youth program is now accepting applications from high school students who are interested in developing their leadership skills, exploring career opportunities, and learning about the importance of community involvement.

This program, which is open to students from across the Klamath Basin region, provides a unique opportunity for young people to gain valuable experience and build lasting connections. The program will run from July 17th through July 21st with full day sessions (9 am to 3 pm).

Through the Leadership Klamath Youth program, students will have the chance to participate in a wide range of activities and workshops designed to develop leadership skills, such as communication, problem-solving, and teamwork. They will also have the opportunity to explore different career paths and industries, learn from local professionals, and gain a deeper understanding of the local economy.

In addition to these leadership and career-focused activities, students in the Leadership Klamath Youth program will also learn about the importance of community involvement and engagement. They will have the opportunity to meet with local leaders, learn about the history of the Klamath Basin region, and engage in conversations that could make a positive impact.

 

Enrollment is now open for the Klamath Falls City Police Junior Police Academy.

Applications are available at the Klamath Falls Police Department.  Please submit applications by Friday June 30th

The no cost academy offers kids 9-11 the opportunity to go behind the scenes and experience police work through interactive presentations and scenarious.
The camp runs July 24th through 27th.

Classes are held from 8:30am-2:30pm at the KFPD headquarters on Shasta Way.  For more information, Contact program coordinator Sergeant Aimee Reichlin 541-883-5336 .

 

Klamath Falls city officials recently announced the company, LS Networks, will be installing fiber optic cables in the downtown area.

According to a press release, the installation began Monday, June 5 and is scheduled to conclude in the evening Wednesday, June 7.

The project began at Pine and 8th streets and was planned to proceed down Pine to 5th Street, then down 5th Street to the alley east of Willow, then the alley to South 6th Street and then down South 6th Street to the overpass.

There will be intermittent temporary sidewalk, parking lane, travel lane and intersection closures during this time period.  For more information, call 541-548-3165.

 

Eclipse viewers this Fall will be in for a double treat: a new festival will be making a smash in Chiloquin.

According to a press release, from Oct. 10 to Oct. 15, EclipseFest23 will offer an immersive festival experience to Klamath County.

“Centered around the once-in-a-generation annular eclipse happening Oct. 14, the event hosts five days of camping, as well as three days of festival activities, food and drink, and vendors,” the release states.

“On Saturday, [Oct. 14], attendees will enjoy the continued festival atmosphere, along with the main event — viewing of the annular eclipse. Later that evening, late ’90s rock band Smash Mouth will rock the festival venue with their hits that will appeal to all ages.”

EclipseFest23 is organized in part with Klamath Freedom Foundation, the release states.

“Northern Klamath County, home to Crater Lake National Park, offers unobstructed views of this year’s annular eclipse and the opportunity to share the experience with other eclipse chasers, families, campers and outdoor enthusiasts,” the release states. “The site of the festival boasts nearly 4-and-a-half minutes of eclipse viewing, among the highest in the narrow eclipse path. This is Oregon’s last major eclipse of the generation. No other eclipse will be viewable in North America (after the southern-to-east-coast total eclipse in 2024) for 26 years.”

All-Festival Passes, which include entry Thursday, Oct. 12 through Sunday, Oct. 15, are available at EclipseFest23.com with an Early Bird price of $120. The All-Festival Pass also includes a ticket to the Smash Mouth concert. Kid passes and individual day passes also are available.

Tickets went on sale mid-May and are only available on EclipseFest23.com. Camping spaces allow for tent sites as well as RV pull-through sites and can be reserved for Oct. 10 to Oct. 15.

Also on the website are applications for artisans, food trucks and general vendors for the event. Vendors must apply online and will receive notifications if they are selected.

For any questions, go to EclipseFest23.com or email info@eclipsefest23.com.

 
Third Thursday are back in downtown Klamath Falls for the Summer.

The highly anticipated Third Thursdays organized by the Klamath Falls Downtown Association, now in its 10th year, will offer residents and visitors those third Thursday memorable evenings of entertainment, art, food, music and local culture, showcasing the city’s unique spirit and fostering a sense of togetherness.

Downtown Klamath Falls will come alive on the third Thursday of June, July and August. The first one is scheduled for June 15th.  Watch for them on the BasinLife.com Events Calendar on our homepage.  Add your event to our homepage by clicking on the banner ad, on the right, that says Add Your Event Here”!

 

KLAMATH COUNTY PUBLIC WORKS DEPARTMENT

SCHEDULE OF MAJOR WORK FOR THE WEEK OF JUNE 5, 2023

Klamath County or Utility Companies will have work crews at the following locations. Please
use caution when in these areas and watch for flaggers. If you are able to avoid the work
zones, please use an alternate route for your safety and the safety of Klamath County
employees and our contractors.

UTILITY WORK WITH INTERMITTENT LANE CLOSURES
Vicinity of Stearns Elementary School
Crest Street: Clinton to Denver
Laverne Avenue: Crest to Altamont
Bobs Excavating – storm sewer work

CRACK SEAL AND PATCHING
Miscellaneous County Roads

Traffic control measures will be in place for guidance. Motorist should use alternative routes if
possible.


In general, flagging stations will be set up at the end of the work zone and delays will be 0 to 20
minutes for the motoring public. Our goal is to minimize the delay to the motoring public.
Other minor work is occurring through the County but we are only listing the major items in this
announcement. There may be adjustments of work schedules due to weather or other items
outside of the County’s control (breakdown of equipment, material/resource availability, etc.)
Please do not contact the County if you do not see work occurring, it could be finished already
or will be rescheduled.


Klamath County Public Works and the Board of County Commissioners appreciate the motoring
publics’ patience during the repair season for our local roads and bridges. If you have any
questions regarding work, please contact the Public Works Department at (541) 883-4696.

 

Around the state of Oregon

Democrats warn of lost opportunities as GOP-led Senate walkout persists

Nearly 300 bills at stake due to Republican-led walkout in the Oregon Senate —- Bills to help wildfire response, expand health care access and prevent homelessness remain in jeopardy as neither side budges

Oregonians have much to lose if the legislative session ends by June 25 without a functioning Senate that can vote on bills, Democrats warned Tuesday.

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State Sen. Jeff Golden, D-Ashland, speaks during a press conference about a Republican walkout on June 6, 2023. (courtesy Julia Shumway/Oregon Capital Chronicle)

The GOP-led Senate walkout is preventing votes on bills intended to benefit average Oregonians from urban Portland to rural eastern Oregon. Examples run the gamut: Bills held up by the walkout would reduce the risk of wildfires racing across rural Oregon, address the homelessness crisis as people camp in tents along city streets and keep health care coverage going for some of the 300,000 Oregonians estimated to lose their access to the Oregon Health Plan, as pandemic-era provisions that kept more people enrolled end.

The GOP-led walkout started May 3, preventing the Senate from having its two-thirds quorum needed to conduct business. For now, the question no one seems to know: How will the session end?

Both Democrats and Republicans blame each other for the impasse, and there are no visible signs of progress.

In a press conference on the state Capitol steps, Democratic lawmakers and advocates on Tuesday urged Republican senators to return to floor sessions and vote on bills.

“Oregonians have had enough,” said Rep. Khanh Pham, D-Portland. “This Senate shutdown is a subversion of our democracy.”

Meanwhile, Senate Minority Leader Tim Knopp, R-Bend, told reporters that Democratic leaders in the Senate have failed to work in a bipartisan way that upholds the constitution.

“Their ire is misplaced, and the Senate Democrats could have ended this weeks ago,” Knopp said. “They chose not to.”

He said the walkout is a means to hold the Democratic-controlled Senate accountable “because if we don’t, no one will, and we can’t have a lawless Legislature.”

Senate Republicans started the walkout saying bill summaries fail to comply with a state law that requires them to have an eighth-grade reading level. They also have pointed to bills they oppose, including House Bill 2002, which would shore up abortion rights and access to gender-affirming care for transgender people, including children. Another is House Bill 2005, which would raise the minimum age to purchase most firearms from 18 to 21 years old.

Bills in jeopardy– As the impasse continues, Democratic lawmakers on Tuesday urged Oregonians – and their Republican colleagues in the Senate – to consider what’s at stake.

For example, a $70 million rural economic development proposal faces an uncertain fate. That proposal, House Bill 3410, would help small farmers, the fishing industry, outdoor recreation, county fairs and other small businesses, said Rep. David Gomberg, D-Otis.

Other bills would aid economic development at the Port of Coos Bay and bring broadband to rural communities, including a proposal that would pull in about $700 million in federal funding to improve broadband services.

But the bills in jeopardy go beyond money and the economy.

“The real question is: Are the Democrats committed to making that happen?” Knopp said. “It appears as though they are so adamant to not have bipartisanship and not have the minority party have a say in what happens that they’re willing to risk the lives of Oregonians.” — (SOURCE)

 

The Oregonian Reporting Women Found Dead Around Portland Share Potential Connections

At least three of the six women whose bodies have been found in Oregon and Washington in recent months shared similar circumstances and had frequented the same places in the months before their deaths, according to a source close to the investigations.

In particular, investigators are examining potential connections among JoAnna Speaks, 32, Charity Lynn Perry, 24, and Bridget Leann Ramsey Webster, 31, who all had been known to frequent Southeast 82nd Avenue and an area near the Clackamas Town Center, said the source, who is not authorized to speak on behalf of any of the half-dozen police agencies investigating the cases.

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The source discounted a statement issued Sunday by Portland police that said the bureau “has no reason to believe these 6 cases are connected.”

“It was premature to state that these deaths are unrelated or related,” the source said. “Investigators always look for commonalities with unsolved homicides.”

Portland police did not respond to a request for comment about whether the bureau’s assessment was premature. The “personal histories” of Speaks, Perry and Webster share similarities, the source said, but declined to elaborate. It remains unclear whether a single perpetrator is linked to the deaths of the three women, the source said.

Speaks died of blunt force trauma in a homicide, investigators have said. Perry and Webster both died under suspicious circumstances, detectives said, but they have not released other information.

All died within about three weeks of each other in April.

Maj. Alex Gardner, who oversees the Oregon State Police Forensic Science & Pathology Bureau, said in an email Tuesday that state police prioritize forensic work and DNA analyses in suspected homicides but offered no timeline for completing them in these cases.

Speaks’ body was found April 8 inside a Clark County barn on an abandoned property in Ridgefield, Washington, about 22 miles north of Portland. Authorities determined Speaks, who lived in Clackamas County, died of blunt head and neck injuries.

Perry’s body was found April 24 by Multnomah County sheriff’s deputies in a culvert at East Historic Columbia River Highway and Northeast Tumalt Road, near Ainsworth State Park in east Multnomah County. The sheriff’s office has not said anything about the circumstances of her death, referring to it only as suspicious.

Authorities have said Perry, of Vancouver, was frequently seen near Southwest Washington Street and Fourth Avenue in downtown Portland at the beginning of March, an area where open-air fentanyl dealing and use has been rampant.

Webster’s body was found April 30 on Harmony Road near Mill Creek in northwest Polk County. Little has been released about the circumstances of her death, though authorities have said it’s suspicious. She was last known to have lived in an apartment in Clackamas County.

Three other women also turned up dead around the same time as Speaks, Perry and Webster.

The body of an unidentified woman was found April 24 near Interstate 205 and Southeast Flavel Street in Southeast Portland’s Lents neighborhood; Portland police said Sunday that foul play was not suspected.

Ashley Real, 22, of Portland, disappeared March 27 in Southeast Portland; her remains were found May 7 in the Eagle Creek area of Clackamas County. Investigators say her death is suspicious. She had previously lived in Clackamas County.

The body of Kristin Smith, 22, of Gresham, was found Feb. 19 in a wooded area near Southeast Deardorff Road and Flavel Street in Southeast Portland’s Pleasant Valley neighborhood. She had been reported missing Dec. 22. Officers and county investigators searched the area for evidence, and the Multnomah County medical examiner has not yet determined a cause of death, police said. (SOURCE)

 

*From Our Story on Monday 6/5: 6 Women Found Dead Around Portland Within 100 Miles

Police are saying there is no connection between the cases of six women found dead in recent months.

Portland residents are very concerned that a possible serial killer is on the loose as the city deals with this chilling mystery of 6 women who have been found dead within 100 miles of each other in the past 3 months. The bodies have been discovered mostly in wooded, secluded rural areas.

“We want to provide reassurance that the speculation is not supported by the facts available at this point,” police said in a press release on Sunday. “While any premature death is concerning … (the Portland Police Bureau) has no reason to believe these 6 cases are connected.”

Police said there was no immediate need for concern.

“If we learn of an articulable danger, we will notify the public about it,” police said.

The cases of the women, all under the age of 40, are being investigated by the Portland Police Bureau and sheriff’s offices in Multnomah, Polk, Clark and Clackamas counties.

The police bureau said rumors have been flying on social media, stoking anxiety in the community about how the cases may be related.

According to law enforcement officials in Portland, all of the women are believed to have lived in Oregon or frequently have visited the state.

Portland residents are very concerned that a possible serial killer is on the loose as the city deals with this chilling mystery of 6 women who have been found dead within 100 miles of each other in the past 3 months.

The bodies have been discovered mostly in wooded, secluded rural areas.

According to law enforcement officials in Portland, all of the women are believed to have lived in Oregon or frequently have visited the state.

The first body was discovered by authorities on Feb. 19. Authorities discovered the human remains of 22-year-old Kristin Smith in southeast Portland’s Pleasant Valley neighborhood.

The cause or manner of Smith’s death is “so far undetermined per the Medical Examiner,” Portland Police Bureau’s Sgt. Kevin Allen said in a statement.

Just over a month later on April 8, police and firefighters in Clark County found the dead body of Joanna Speaks inside a barn on an abandoned property in Ridgefield, Washington, about 22 miles north of Portland.

According to the county medical examiner, Speaks died of blunt head and neck injuries. Authorities also believe her body was moved to the location where it was found.

On April 24, authorities discovered two more bodies. The body of 24-year-old Charity Lynn Perry was found in a culvert along the historic Columbia River Highway. Authorities cited an ongoing suspicious death investigation regarding Perry’s body.

On the same day, authorities would discover another women’s dead body in southeast Portland’s Lents neighborhood.

Authorities are seeking the public’s help to identify the woman, who was possibly Native American or Native Alaskan and between the ages of 25 and 40.

Six days later, on April 30, officials found the body of 31-year-old Bridget Leann Ramsey Webster in northwest Polk County.

Authorities say she is from Milwaukie and would visit the Portland metro area frequently.

Portland residents speculate that a serial killer is on the loose and remains at large. The question that everyone wants answered is are these murders connected?

Until that mystery is solved, residents remain on edge. (SOURCE)

 

***** Oregon has a missing person epidemic and there are 100 women reported missing over the age of 20 since June 2020 — that averages 33 that go missing per month – that have never been found. (There are 516 overall that go back further)

 

Join the Josephine County Missing Person Rally on Friday

FRIDAY, JUNE 9, 2023 AT 10 AM – 6 PMJosephine County Circuit Court

https://www.facebook.com/events/197013002742549/?ref=newsfeed

Our intention is to bring renewed awareness to over 30 of the 50 active missing persons cases in Josephine County, Oregon. We will have signs held outside of the courthouse, some will be held by family members of the local missing, others will be held by community volunteers who simply wish to see these cases resolved.

We will have tables of fliers set up for any curious folks who are passing by. There will also be snacks and drinks, though bringing your own provisions is highly encouraged. this is a PEACEFUL demonstration, but peaceful certainly doesn’t have to mean quiet. We need to get loud, and let people know that we will not let our missing be forgotten. We need to demand answers. Too many of these cases hinge on people coming forward with information. Now is the time to let them know they can.  https://www.facebook.com/JoCoMPP

 

There was just shy of $80 million in legal marijuana sold in May in Oregon.

In total Oregon marijuana stores sold $79,071,330 worth of marijuana and marijuana products. This is slightly less than, but roughly on par with, the $80.7 million sold in April and the $81 million sold in March.

It’s about 6% less than the $84 million sold in May, 2022. This is all according to data released by the Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission (OLCC).

Oregon garnered roughly $13.4 million in taxes from the $79 million in marijuana sold in May, based on the state’s 17% marijuana tax rate. This doesn’t include any tax revenue obtained by cities who have established their own local tax.

Total sales-to-date since the start of recreational marijuana sales in October, 2016 now stands at $5.66 billion, resulting in around $960 million in tax revenue.

According to the OLCC, the average price per gram of cannabis is now $3.81, a 62% decrease from the $10.50 average in October, 2016.

The average cost per gram of marijuana extracts is also down substantially; the current cost is $16.55, down from a high of $45.

Oregon’s marijuana law was approved by voters in 2014, although the first marijuana store didn’t open until 2016. Under the law those 21 and older are allowed to possess up to two ounces of marijuana, or eight ounces at home, as well as one ounce of marijuana extracts, 16 ounces of marijuana-infused solids and 72 ounces of marijuana-infused liquids. (SOURCE)

 

Up To $200 Provided For Safeway Lawsuit Settlement In Oregon

Up to $200 will be provided for the settlement of the Safeway lawsuit. Reports say Safeway was accused of deceiving its Club Card members of a buy-one, get-one-or-two-free deal in Oregon.

Safeway Lawsuit Settlement for Club Card Members [Photo: Global News]

In accordance with the Safeway lawsuit, the grocery store owned and managed by Albertsons Companies, Inc. was accused of deceiving its Club Card members. The company reportedly tricked the members into thinking they will get a buy-one, get-one-or-two-free (BOGO) deal in Oregon.

Furthermore, according to Weiss, the Safeway lawsuit states that the company also imposed fees on non-grocery purchases in Portland. This means that the prices on items like beef, chicken, and pork were increased. Safeway customers claimed that this is because of the 1% clean energy surcharge imposed on large retailer revenue in 2019.

Nonetheless, the company decided to settle the Safeway lawsuit with a total payment worth $8.75 million. Every affected customer may claim an equal share of the payments capped at $200 each. Unfortunately, the amount to be received may be reduced depending on the number of claims that will be filed.

According to Wilson, to be able to qualify for the settlement of the Safeway lawsuit, a customer must have purchased certain meat products at the stores located in Oregon. Furthermore, these products must have been offered on a BOGO deal. Most importantly, only those who have used a Safeway Club Card between May 4, 2015, and September 7, 2016 will receive the payments. The deadline to submit a claim is scheduled to be on June 16.

Safeway BOGO Class Action Settlement: https://www.safewaybogoclassaction.com/

 
Visit the National Touring Exhibition: The Legend of Bob Hope, at the Oregon Historical Society now through August 18th, 2023
Entertainer Bob Hope elicited laughs across all media: through radio waves, on the stage, and on the screen, in both television and film.

But none of them mattered more than the humor he injected into American camps across the globe during World War II as the Allies struggled to save the world for democracy. 

Using multimedia elements and captivating storytelling — including objects, films, rare photographs, and an interactive display — So Ready for Laughter: The Legacy of Bob Hopehighlights how Hope helped lift the human spirit during one of the darkest times in American history. This national touring exhibition is on loan from The National WWII Museum and is on display at the Oregon Historical Society in Portland, Oregon, now through August 18, 2023.

Bob Hope came to the United States as an immigrant with his family in the early 1920s, initially working as a newsboy, butcher’s assistant, shoe salesman, and amateur boxer. Hope went on to eventually shape his art on the vaudeville stage, and by the start of World War II, he was just emerging as one of America’s most popular radio and film stars. When the nation went to war in 1941, Hollywood recognized the need for contributions and responded by entertaining troops, raising funds, and boosting morale. Hope’s work quickly took on new meaning when he took his wartime programs on the road to military camps and bases across the country, inspiring other entertainers to join him.

Exploring Hope’s major tours and travels during World War II, So Ready for Laughter features nearly fifty objects and also includes an original 11-minute documentary produced by award-winning filmmaker John Scheinfeld. Highlights include rare and unpublished photographs of Hope, wartime correspondence between Hope and servicemembers, WWII-era objects engraved to Hope, videos of his traveling wartime troupe, and Hollywood Victory Caravan programs and scrapbooks. Supported by national tour exhibit sponsor the Bob & Dolores Hope Foundation, So Ready for Laughter: The Legacy of Bob Hope tells the story of the entertainer’s unique place in World War II history and beyond.

The Oregon Historical Society’s museum is open seven days a week, Monday–Saturday 10am–5pm and Sunday 12pm–5pm. Admission is $10, with discounts for students, seniors, teachers, and youth. Admission is free every day for OHS members and Multnomah County residents. Learn more and plan your visit at ohs.org/visit.


About the Oregon Historical Society

For more than a century, the Oregon Historical Society has served as the state’s collective memory, preserving a vast collection of objects, photographs, maps, manuscript materials, books, films, and oral histories. 

 

Six tips to keep campfires safe and enjoyable this season

Gathering around the campfire is a highlight for many visitors at Oregon State Parks. If you follow some basic guidelines, you can enjoy this tradition safely and reduce the risk of injury and wildfires.

Wildfire is a real danger in Oregon despite the wet and snowy spring. That’s why the No. 1 precaution you can take is to follow posted fire restrictions. At times, campfires and other open flames may be banned in campgrounds or on the beach.

Campfire at Minam State Recreation Area

Restrictions can happen at any time and with little warning, depending on conditions. Be sure to research conditions for the area near where you’re camping just before you head out. Fire restrictions may be in place at the park, county or state level. The Oregon State Parks websitewill post the latest information about campfires in state parks.

Restrictions may be in place even though the park is far from any wildfires. When wildfires rage, emergency responders and firefighters need to be on the front lines. We ask campers to do their part to make sure an emergency at the campground doesn’t pull resources from the statewide firefighting effort.

“If you’re camping with children or others who are new to outdoor recreation, it’s particularly important to review campfire safety practices,” said Chris Havel, Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) associate director. “If you have a question or a concern, talk with a park ranger or camp host.”

OPRD offers these six tips for a safe and enjoyable campfire:

  1. Maintain campfire flames at knee height (no more than 2 feet high). A smaller flame helps prevent embers from rising into the trees or dry vegetation. If you see the wind stirring up embers, play it safe and put the fire out.
  2. In a state park campground, only build campfires in the existing fire ring in your campsite. Fire rings are placed in areas with buffer zones and away from vegetation.
  3. Always keep plenty of water on hand to safely put out the campfire. Douse the flames with water and stir the embers to make sure everything is wet. The stirring step is important: ash and wood debris often maintain heat. Repeat these steps until the fire no longer emits heat.
  4. Beach campfires should be on open sand and away from driftwood or vegetation and use only natural wood, rather than pallets or anything else that might have hidden nails or screws. Slowly pour water on your beach fire to put it out. Pouring water too quickly can cause hot sand to fly up. Don’t use sand to put out a beach fire. Covering the fire with sand will insulate the coals, keeping them hot enough to burn someone hours or days later.
  5. For propane fire rings, follow the same safety precautions you would with a log-based campfire. The use of propane fire rings may be restricted depending on local conditions.
  6. Make sure everyone in your campsite is familiar with campfire safety, including children. Always keep an eye on your campfire; many accidental fires are started because campers left their fire unattended for “just a minute.”

In addition to keeping your campfire safe, it’s also important to make sure your wood is free from invasive insects to keep our forests safe from the deadly emerald ash borer and other pests. Please do not bring firewood from outside the local area. Buy local firewood within 10 miles of your destination or buy certified heat-treated firewood.

During May, the Oregon Department of Forestry, the Oregon Office of State Fire Marshal, the Office of Emergency Management, Keep Oregon Green, the U.S. Forest Service, OPRD and other federal, state and local emergency and response agencies are encouraging the public to work together in their local communities to prevent the risk of wildfire.

Information about recreation and wildfire safety is at keeporegongreen.org. Visit stateparks.oregon.gov for information about Oregon State Parks including fire restrictions and safety guidelines.

 

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