Klamath Basin News, Monday, Sept. 11 – Klamath County Creates Muti-Agency Coordination Group Ahead of Solar Eclipse; More Illegal Pot Confiscated Near Christmas Valley

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Monday, Sept. 11, 2023

Klamath Basin Weather

Sunny, with a high near 84.  Light calm wind to 5 mph expected. Overnight, clear with a low around 49 degrees. 
Widespread haze after 3pm. Sunny, with a high near 81. Calm wind becoming west 5 to 8 mph in the afternoon.
Sunny, with a high near 80.
Sunny, with a high near 85.
Sunny, with a high near 87.
Sunny, with a high near 87.
Sunny, with a high near 87.

Today’s Headlines

An earthquake shook the town of Fall River Mills, Calif., with reports of quaking as far as Red Bluff and Redding, 70 miles southwest of its origin.

Disturbances were also reported here in Klamath Falls, Shasta, Weed, Alturas and as far south as the Chico area.

According to the United States Geological Survey, the quake began at 10:24 a.m. just 7.5 miles west-southwest of Fall River Mills. Reports recorded the rumble originated 9 miles below the surface.  Initial reports via the “My Shake” app from the state of California and Google measured the earthquake at a 5.2 on the Richter scale.

No reports of damage were received by Shasta County Sheriff’s Office according to a post on the agency’s Facebook page. (Herald and News)


The Klamath area is known for its year-round sunshine. In fact, the region will be the center of attention on October 14 for the sliver of sunlight seen around the moon during the eclipse.

The annual Solar Eclipse is six weeks away, but planning and coordinating are happening to make the experience positive for local residents and the expected visitors. A 12-agency Multi-Agency Coordination Group, known as “MAC,” is working to ensure the health and safety of everyone in Klamath County during the eclipse period.

Commissioner Dave Henslee says ““The first and highest priority is and always will be the safety of first responders, the public, and communities. There is a multiagency coordinating group organizing proactive response, and, it is our commitment to work collaboratively, sharing critical information and resources, which enables all partners to meet common objectives.”

This planning process honors the ability of each individual agency to respond to its respective priorities while providing the flexibility to move and position resources for efficient and effective service.

For instance, law enforcement will have extra officers on duty as traffic increases before and after the eclipse.

Henslee noted that much information has been gleaned from the Oregon counties that had many visitors during the Great Eclipse of 2017. (Klamath County press release)


Search warrants executed on a property in Christmas Valley recently led to the discovery and destruction of more than 1,000 marijuana plants and 50 pounds of dried, processed product.

A news release from the Oregon State Police said OSP Drug Enforcement Section Southwest Region Marijuana team searched a property on the 83000 block of Christmas Valley Highway on Aug. 30.

Genaro Farfan, 32, of Fresno, Calif., was found on site and was arrested. He is lodged at the Lake County Jail for unlawful manufacture of marijuana.

Two firearms were also confiscated. Law enforcement also found large piles of trash, chemicals, a two story, unpermitted structure, an improvised irrigation system and hazardous electrical wiring on the property.

The OSP team received assistance from the OSP Special Weapons and Tactics team, OSP Major Crimes Section, OSP Lakeview Patrol Office, OSP Klamath Falls Patrol Office, Basin Illegal Narcotics Enforcement Team and Klamath and Lake Counties Sheriff’s Offices. (Herald and News)


Klamath County work crews will be at the following sites during the week of Monday, Sept 11. The county asks motorists to avoid the work areas when possible or proceed with caution.

Shoulder work

  • Sprague River Road: Shoulder work for mailbox turnouts, milepost 5 through milepost 12.

Fog seal

Chip sealing of roads in the Urban Growth Boundary. To view map of all roads planned for chip seal in 2023, visit klamathcounty.org/734/Maps

ODOT ADA ramp lane closure

  • Tuesday, Sept. 12 to Friday, Sept. 15: ADA ramp construction will close a portion of the northbound lane of Esplanade Avenue near the downtown train bridge from 7 a.m. until 6 p.m. A detour route will be in place to direct northbound traffic back onto Crater Lake Parkway via Spring and Main Streets. After 6 p.m., the northbound lane of Esplanade Avenue will reopen for regular traffic. For additional information, contact Travis Wegdahl at 360-831-2274.

Lake Park Towers construction

Monday, Sept. 11 to Friday, Sept. 15: Lake Park Towers, located at 203 Main St., will be under construction for the week. The right lane of Main Street between Second and Third Streets will be closed. Second Street between Pine and Main Streets will be closed to all through traffic. For more information, contact Bogatay Contruction at 541-264-2829.  (Herald and News)


Cypress Creek Renewables and the Oregon Institute of Technology have announced Friday a partnership once again to support STEM education and strengthen Oregon’s renewable energy workforce.

As part of the continued partnership, Cypress Creek has committed to an additional $120,000 investment for Oregon Tech student scholarships and sponsorships over the next four years.

This renewed collaboration includes establishing a Cypress Creek Renewables Distinguished Fellowship, a scholarship that will be awarded to two students from underserved populations who are studying specific engineering or STEM subjects that lead to careers in renewable energy, with the opportunity to renew the scholarship for up to three years.

The Cypress Creek-Oregon Tech partnership also features a long-term mentorship program designed to allow Cypress Creek staff to share professional expertise with Oregon Tech students and financial support for STEM-related Oregon Tech events such as IdeaFest, Catalyze Klamath and career fairs. (Herald and News)


Around the state of Oregon

Managers of the Paid Leave Oregon program said “rollout is going well” in an update Thursday, as people started taking paid time off under the program earlier in the week.

According to the Oregon Employment Department, as of September 3 – the day people could start taking paid leave — they had received 10,222 applications, with 1,820 of those applications approved to receive benefits.

Paid Leave Oregon, established by the Oregon Legislature in 2019, provides workers up to 12 weeks of guaranteed paid time off from work to take care of their familial, medical or safety needs. Applicable reasons for requesting leave include welcoming a new child to a family, dealing with a long-term illness or taking care of oneself after surviving a serious crime like sexual assault or stalking.

The program has been taking applications since August 14, and managers expect the first round of payments to go out around September 13.

Paid Leave Oregon is funded by employee paycheck deductions and employer contributions. Workers can apply for paid time off through the program’s website, which requires people to upload documents and other supporting materials as evidence they qualify for the leave. (oregon news)


The Oregon Heath Authority reports people are spending 22-percent of their household budgets on health insurance.

It’s totaling nearly eight-thousand dollars a year per person. It’s a 40% increase since 2013. The high costs are disproportionately impacting communities of color and low-income Oregonians. The Health Authority will hold a virtual public hearing on September 14th to take comments on the high costs of health care.  (oregon news)


Supermarket giants Kroger and Albertsons announced Friday they will sell off at least 49 stores in Oregon as part of their efforts to complete their proposed $24.6 billion merger.

In a $1.9 billion deal, the two grocers will sell 413 stores — including some from Kroger’s Fred Meyer and QFC chains and Albertsons’ Safeway — in 17 states and the District of Columbia to New Hampshire-based C&S Wholesale Grocers, the companies said in a news release. All fuel centers and pharmacies associated with the divested stores will remain open.

The agreement also includes selling eight distribution centers and two corporate offices to C&S Wholesale Grocers.

Kroger declined to specify which stores in Oregon would be sold off to C&S. The company also declined to say whether the Fred Meyer corporate office in Portland would be among the two slated to be sold.

The divestiture plan also includes 104 stores in Washington state and 13 from the Albertsons portfolio in Idaho.  The deal would give an enlarged retail operation of more than 500 stores to the privately held C&S.  (oregon news)


 A man was killed by police in Rockaway Beach on Thursday. The Tillamook County Sheriff’s Office says the shooting happened near North Juniper Street.

Details of what led to the shooting haven’t been released. The man died at the scene. No officers were seriously injured. The investigation into the shooting continues.  (oregon news)


Something many lumber companies and Oregonians already know is once again confirmed in a new study out of Oregon State University, showing that forest thinning helps older trees and makes forests stronger.

Researchers studied a forest in Oregon’s Blue Mountains. It found thinning trees made older trees more robust. It also strengthened the forest against disease and devastating wildfires. The benefits of thinning take three to four years to happen. It also allows grasses and shrubs to grow that are less likely to cause a major fire. (oregon news)


The Oregon Department of Public Safety Standards and Training is inviting you to visit their memorial to 9/11 in Salem, today.

It’s located at the Oregon Public Safety Academy. It includes a section from the base of One World Trade Center, which was the North Tower, along with other pieces and a limestone fascia from the outer wall of the Pentagon near where the aircraft impacted the building. Nearly three-thousand people were killed in the attacks, including more than 400 firefighters, law enforcement officers and rescue workers. Hundreds of first responders have died due to illnesses from working at Ground Zero. The memorial will be open from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Monday, September 11th.  (oregon news)


A bloom of toxic algae in the Willamette River is shrinking. The Oregon Health Authority has reduced the size of the advisory to the Ross Island Lagoon and Willamette Cove.

The algae releases cyanotoxins that can be harmful to people and pets if swallowed. Pets and small children are especially vulnerable. People and pets should avoid areas where the water is foamy, scummy, thick like paint, and pea-green or blue-green.  (oregon news)


A white object high in the sky over northwest Oregon drew a lot of attention last week.

It was a research balloon for NASA from Near Space Corporation based in Tillamook. It’s similar to a standard weather balloon, but flies higher than planes can travel. The company has been in business since 1996 and offers high altitude and near space platforms for government, academic, and commercial customers. (oregon news)


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