Klamath Basin News, Monday, Feb. 12 – County Commissioner Dave Henslee Will Not Run For Re-Election Oregon School Children Must Have Up-To-Date Immunizations by Feb 21st; Chiefs Win Super Bowl

The latest and most comprehensive coverage of local News, Sports, Business, and Community News stories in the Klamath Basin, Southern Oregon and around the state of Oregon from Wynne Broadcasting’s KFLS News/Talk 1450AM / 102.5FM, The Herald and News, and BasinLife.com, and powered by Mick Insurance, your Local Health and Medicare agents. Call 541-882-6476.

Monday, February 12, 2024

Klamath Basin Weather

Today
We’ll have patchy fog before 10am. Otherwise, mostly cloudy, with a high near 49. Calm wind. Overnight, mostly cloudy, with a low around 29. Light northwest winds to 6 mph.
 
Tuesday
Partly sunny, with a high near 46. Calm wind becoming west 5 to 8 mph in the afternoon. Overnight a chane of rain mixed with snow, with snow level lowering to 4400 feet, with a low around 32 degrees. West southwest wind around 7 mph becoming south southeast after midnight. Chance of precipitation is 30%. Little or no snow accumulation expected.
Wednesday
A chance of rain and snow before 10am, then a chance of rain. Snow level 4400 feet rising to 5200 feet in the afternoon. Cloudy, with a high near 45. South wind 9 to 14 mph. Little or no snow accumulation. Overnight a chance of rain or snow, low of 34. little or no snow accumulation expected. 
Thursday
A chance of rain and snow before 10am, then a chance of rain. Snow level 4500 feet rising to 5100 feet in the afternoon. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 45. Chance of precipitation is 50%. Little or no snow accumulation expected.
Friday
A slight chance of rain and snow before 10am, then a chance of rain. Snow level 4600 feet rising to 5500 feet in the afternoon. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 50.
Saturday
Rain likely. Snow level 5200 feet. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 48.
Sunday
A slight chance of rain and snow. Snow level 4300 feet rising to 5000 feet in the afternoon. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 48.

Today’s Headlines

Last week, KFLS News and BasinLife.com from Wynne Broadcasting reported that Klamath County Commissioner Dave Henslee would likely not be running for re-election in the coming year. Henslee confirmed that late last week, using Facebook as his platform to inform the public and press.

Henslee started his public service work as a reserve officer with the Corvallis Police Department in 1992 and became a full-time policeman in 1993.

Henslee ran for the seat of Klamath County Commissioner Position 1 in 2021 and was elected in 2022.

After serving one term, Henslee has chosen not to run for a second.

The county commissioner thanked his supportive constituents for placing their trust in his leadership.

Henslee said he is certain he can still achieve the goals and vision he’d set when he chose to become a commissioner, and that by not running he can better “focus on the work.”

Henslee’s final day in office will be Dec. 31.

As of Friday, only one other candidate has filed for Klamath County Board of Commissioners Position 1 — Klamath County Sheriff’s Office Courthouse Deputy Dan Girard.

Nominations will be accepted for elected positions at the county level until March 12. Ballots must be mailed in or dropped off by May 1.

For more information about the upcoming primaries, visit klamathcounty.org.

 

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) is offering a $50,000 reward for information as it investigates the deaths of three endangered gray wolves in Klamath County. The deaths happened late last year east of Bly in an area of known wolf activity.

FWS said the collars of two gray wolves showed a mortality signal on Dec. 29, 2023. Oregon State Police found two dead, collared wolves and another dead wolf without a collar. One was an adult, breeding female. The other two were subadults — not pups, but not yet full adult. 

Neither FWS nor the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) would elaborate on the nature of the deaths.

Two of the wolves were part of the Gearhart Mountain Pack. ODFW said seven members remain in the pack including the breeding male. 

Gray wolves are listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act in the western two-thirds of Oregon.

Anyone with information about this case is asked to call the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service at (503) 682-6131, or the Oregon State Police Dispatch at (800) 452-7888, *OSP (*677) or email TIP@osp.oregon.gov. Callers may remain anonymous. The reward is for any information that leads to an arrest, a criminal conviction or civil penalty assessment. 

 

On Friday January 19, 2024, Klamath County Circuit Court Judge Alycia E. Kersey granted multiple pretrial motions, resulting in the City of Klamath Falls’ dismissal from a lawsuit filed by Dan Martin Construction, Inc.

The suit also included the City’s current Public Works Director Mark Willrett and former Development Services Director Scott Souders as defendants with the City. Both individual defendants were dismissed from the suit at the start of Friday’s hearing.

The lawsuit, filed in May of 2023, sought injunctive relief and 5.5 million dollars against the City and accused the City of various theories of breach of contract as well as tortious interference with a business relationship. The events relevant to the suit took place over several years.

Dan Martin, the owner of Dan Martin Construction, Inc., presented a plan for the development of homes outside of the city limits and northeast of the junction of Highways 39 and 140. After signing documents for the City which acknowledged not only the need for certain infrastructure upgrades for water to be available to his development, but also his agreement to pay for those upgrades, Martin demanded that the City pay for the upgrades to subsidize his development.

Since that time, the City proposed multiple methods to proceed, including various forms of cost sharing. Martin declined and filed suit. In response, the City filed several pretrial motions, including a motion for summary judgment and an anti-SLAPP (Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation) motion. After a 45-minute hearing on January 19, Judge Kersey granted the City’s motion to dismiss under the anti-SLAPP statutes.

She also granted the City’s motion for summary judgment, which resulted in a dismissal of the case. As part of the anti-SLAPP ruling, the City is statutorily entitled to recover fees and costs from Dan Martin Construction, Inc. Casey Murdock of Frohnmayer, Deatherage, et al. represented the City of Klamath Falls. Chase Beguin of Cauble & Whittington represented Dan Martin Construction.

 

From Kingsley Field, fighter jets from the local airbase will be conducting night flights in the area throughout the coming week.

A news release from Kingsley Field 173rd Fighter Wing said that nighttime operations will begin Monday, Feb. 12 and run through Thursday, Feb. 15. Pilots are expected to be flying overhead between the hours of 6 p.m. and 11 p.m.

“Night flying is one part of the course curriculum for F-15C student pilots at Kingsley Field,” the release said.

Most of the training will take place in the military operating airspace directly east of Lakeview where pilots can fly without lights, the release said.

Takeoffs will begin shortly after sunset with jets expected to return to base approximately 90 minutes later.

 

Adult student artists will exhibit their work through the month of February at the Klamath County Museum’s Modoc Gallery. A reception for the artists will be held from noon to 3 p.m. this Saturday in the museum’s lobby.

Student exhibitors include June Bell, Luisa Freeman, Billie Hagerman, Penny Hansen, Mary Johnson, Cindy Kalisch and Helen O’Hara.

The students are working on their technique under the instruction of Susan Liskey, who conducts weekly classes at the museum. Liskey offers instruction in oil and acrylics, with a focus on blending colors on canvas and softening edges with a fan brush.

Admission to the gallery is free during regular museum hours, Tuesday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Klamath County Museum is located at 1451 Main St. in Klamath Falls. For more information contact the museum at (541) 882-1000.

 
Amadeus Hernandez has won the Chamber of Commerce’s Youth Leader of the Year award.

A Lost River Junior/Senior High School senior won the Klamath County Chamber of Commerce’s Youth Leadership Award for his ongoing work as a leader and positive role model.

Amadeus Hernandez, 17, accepted the honor last month at an event attended by more than 600 people. He was among 10 Klamath Basin youth who were nominated for the award.

Amadeus is soft spoken with a quick smile. As captain of the school’s soccer team, he works to inspire his teammates, leading by example and providing a solid foundation for the school’s new soccer program. He also started an after-school weight lifting program for fellow athletes.

Lost River Principal Angie Wallin described Amadeus as someone who leads by example. “He’s a quiet positive leader, and he has been a great mentor to the younger students as the school started its soccer program.”

In addition to soccer, Wallin participates in track and has been involved in Lost River’s FBLA (Future Business Leaders of America) program for the past six years, serving as a chapter officer and competing at the state, regional, and national levels. His nominators described him as a driving force in helping his FBLA chapter raise funds for conferences and competitions. Amadeus has competed at the regional, state and national levels for FBLA and is aiming to qualify for nationals again this year.

In addition, he is an officer for the school’s Latin Culture Club and volunteers with the Malin Centro Cristiano Church.

 

Residents neighboring the Portland Street railroad crossing awoken by late-night train whistles might soon sleep through the night.

The Klamath Falls City Council approved the next steps in establishing a quiet zone through the residential neighborhood during their meeting last week.

The item on the city’s agenda was to decide whether the municipality should enter into a public highway at-grade crossing agreement with Union Pacific Railroad.

The agreement will allow the city to widen the railroad crossing at Portland Street to meet Americans with Disabilities Act requirements.

The council approved the item with a majority vote of 3-to-1.

Had the council not approved the agreement, the agenda report said it would be a “deal killer” for ever establishing a quiet zone.

City Public Works director Mark Willrett explained that although the initial estimated and budgeted dollar amount exceeded $500,000, that number was reduced to roughly $300,000. Maintenance for equipment is estimated to cost $10,000 per year.

 

Klamath Union High School senior Mia Hidden was announced as the first-place winner of You Matter to Klamath’s fifth annual Youth Suicide Prevention video contest.

Hidden won $1,000 for her original video titled “Warning Signs.” Her video was one of 13 submissions. The contest, organized by local suicide prevention coalition You Matter to Klamath, is open to all seventh through 12th graders in the Klamath Basin.

Prizes ranged from $50 to $1,000, and were funded with donations from the Alky Angels — Sunrise Chapter, Cascade Health Alliance, Citizens for Safe Schools, Klamath Basin Behavioral Health, and Klamath Defender Services.

Each of the 13 contestants received a minimum prize of $50, in addition to a Dutch Bros. gift card.

 

During the months of April and May, over 800 third graders throughout Klamath County, Dorris, and Tulelake will receive FREE, LIFE-SAVING swim lessons through the Everyone Swims program at Ella Redkey Pool.

The Everyone Swims program is made possible this Spring through the partnership of Sky Lakes Medical Center and the City of Klamath Falls. Students receive individualized instruction, develop skills, build confidence, and learn life-saving skills, all while having fun with their peers in the water.

Ella Redkey Pool is looking for Volunteer Swim Lesson Instructor Aids. You have an opportunity to make a difference in a child’s life! Everyone Swims 3rd Grade Program has been a huge success in the past years and we are so excited to keep it going. We need your help to make this program possible.

No experience? No problem. As a pool volunteer you will receive intensive swim instruction training prior to the start of swim lessons. During the Everyone Swims program you will be paired with a Certified Lifeguard/Swim Lesson Instructor to guide you through the process, so you won’t be left alone to teach.

Everyone Swims Volunteer Schedule: • 6 weeks of lessons: Monday, April 15 – Thursday, May 23 • Lessons are held 4 days per week: Monday through Thursday • Morning & Afternoon session options: 9:00am – 11:00am and/or 12:15pm – 2:45pm Volunteer as much or as little as you’d like. All help is appreciated. All volunteers are required to pass a background check with the City of Klamath Falls.

 

                  Coming to Ross Ragland Theater!
The Missoula Children’s Theatre Spring Break Theater Camp Presents

Jack and the Beanstalk

Dates: Monday-Friday, March 25-29; 8:30am – 1:00pm

Performances: Saturday, March 30 at 3pm & 5:30pm

The Missoula Children’s Theatre presents JACK AND THE BEANSTALK, an original adaptation of the classic children’s story. What happens when a young boy plants Wonder Beans in his own backyard? For Jack, it is the beginning of a great adventure. With a little help from P.T. Wonder and a Giant, Jack learns a valuable lesson about true happiness. This musical production also features a host of other characters, including the Elegant Harp, Jill, Mother, Milky White, the Farmers, the Merchants, the Circus Performers and the Wonder Beans.

There are three age groups for the Spring Break Camp with opportunities for students from Kindergarten to age 18!

Cost: $175, multi-student discount available; scholarships available

Group 1: Kinder – age 7 have the opportunity to be part of the production on stage! They will audition on Monday and begin rehearsals that day! (16 spots available)

Group 2: Ages 8 – 8th grade have the opportunity to be part of the production on stage! They will audition on Monday and begin rehearsals that day! (44 spots available)

Group 3: Ages 12-18 have the opportunity to be an assitant director for the show! Have the experience of helping backstage and to learn from MCT’s director team! (4 spots available)

 LEARN MORE ABOUT THE ROSS RAGLAND SPRING CAMPS HERE!

 

KLAMATH FALLS, OR, Thursday, February 8, 2024 – Join the Ross Ragland Theater for an unforgettable night of celebration and giving back! The Red Tie Masquerade Ball & Scholarship Fundraiser will occur on Saturday, February 24, 2024.

The Red Tie Masquerade Ball & Scholarship Fundraiser is a premier fundraising gala
and social event that raises awareness of the need and benefits of keeping access to the arts
and arts education for K-12 students across the Klamath Basin and Southeastern Oregon.

The doors will open at 5:30, with performances and events scheduled throughout the evening.

This must-attend event is full of elegance, delicious food, and live entertainment, all
dedicated to supporting the Ragland in funding our seven revered education programs that
help create arts education opportunities for students across the Klamath Basin. Our
education programs offer over 20,000 individual opportunities for arts education to all
students in the Basin, K-12, each year.

Your support will make a difference in the lives of many students who dream of a
brighter future. You don’t want to miss this fantastic opportunity to have fun and make a
lasting impact.

Our Masquerade Ball promises an unforgettable night filled with surprises,
enchantment, and a Silent Auction you don’t want to miss! So, mark your calendars and
prepare for a mystical experience like no other. We can’t wait to see you there!

Red Tie Masquerade Ball & Scholarship Fundraiser: February 24, 2024 starting at 5:30
pm.

TICKETS: $75 for singles, $120 for couples
Call 884-LIVE today to reserve your ticket now!
Visit the theater’s website at www.ragland.org to purchase tickets online and learn more
about the theater. The box office is open 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday or two
hours before show time the day of any show.
If you would like more information, please email: development@ragland.org

 

Klamath County libraries to close for Presidents’ Day

All Klamath County libraries will be closed on Monday, February 19th in
observance of Presidents’ Day. No materials will be due on a day that the
libraries are closed.

For more information, call us at 541-882-8894.

 

Each week, BasinLife.com and KFLS News 1450AM & 102.5FM feature a pet of the Week ready for adoption from the Klamath Animal Shelter.

This week’s pet of the week this week is a dog named ” Melon ” Melon is an 8 month old male Labrador Border Collie mix, he is black with white markings, he weighs around 50 pounds 

Melon’s family had to move and the new landlord wouldn’t allow him. His family said that he is started on house training, lived with children 6 months and older, he knows sit, lays down, loves belly rubs, playing with toys and playing with dogs at the dog park

If you are interested in adopting Melon the shelter is located at 4240 Washburn Way, Monday through Friday from 12:00 – 4:00, walk throughs are available, pet meet and greets are by appointment, you can reach the shelter at 541-884-PETS (541-884-7387)

View all adoptable pets anytime online at www.klamathanimalshelter.org

 

Just for reading our news, click to enter to win Free Movie Tickets from BasinLife.com and Wynne Broadcasting. 
  Click here!

 

 

Around the state of Oregon

Children in school or childcare need to have up-to-date immunizations by February 21st, or they may be kept out of school.  

February 21st is School Exclusion Day this year in Oregon.  State law requires all children in public and private schools, Head Start and certified childcare facilities to show documentation their immunizations are complete.  Last year, more than 26-thousand letters were sent to parents reminding them to get their kids immunized.  

County health departments offer vaccines for people who can’t pay or don’t have health insurance.  Call 211 to find out more.

 

NURSE STRIKE CONTINUES MONDAY, FEB. 12 AT PEACEHEALTH SACRED HEART HOME CARE SERVICES

Nurses to speak at Eugene City Council Monday, Feb. 12 at 7:30 pm.

(Eugene/Springfield, Ore.) – Following a successful strike kickoff rally and picket Saturday, Feb. 10, home health and hospice nurses are back on the picket line Monday, Feb. 12 at PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Home Care Services in Lane County.

In addition to picketing, home health and hospice nurses plan to testify at the Eugene City Council meeting Monday, Feb. 12 at 7:30 p.m at the LCC Downtown Building (101 West 10th Avenue, Suite 114, Eugene, OR 97401). Nurses will share their experiences healing and helping vulnerable patients and families throughout Lane County; discuss PeaceHealth’s nursing crisis; and address PeaceHealth’s failure to come to a fair agreement with frontline caregivers and its impact on homebound patients and the local community. 

Home health and hospice nurses at PeaceHealth are holding a limited duration strike Feb. 10 – 24 to protect their community’s health and safety, combat care delays, secure equitable pay and address PeaceHealth’s staffing crisis at PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Home Care Services. Picket lines will be maintained Monday – Friday from 7 a.m. – 7 p.m. at the PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Home Care Services offices (123 International Way, Springfield, OR 97477) for the duration of the strike. 

The more than 90 registered nurses at PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Home Care Services are represented by the Oregon Nurses Association (ONA).

On Saturday, Feb. 10, nearly 200 home care nurses and community allies participated in a strike kickoff rally and picket.

Participants included Congresswoman Val Hoyle, a representative from Senator Jeff Merkley’s office, State Senator James Manning, House Majority Leader Julie Fahey, State Representative and registered nurse Travis Nelson, Eugene Mayor Lucy Vinis, Springfield City Councilor Kori Rodly, ONA President Tamie Cline, along with union leaders, frontline health care workers from local hospitals and home health agencies, former patients and their families and nurses from PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Home Care Services. 

Local home health and hospice nurses deliver hospital-quality care to patients’ homes—helping heal patients with traumatic injuries and illnesses, keeping seniors independent, and giving dying individuals and their families dignity and freedom during the final stage of life. According to the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, “Home health care is usually less expensive, more convenient, and just as effective as care you get in a hospital or skilled nursing facility.”

Nurses began negotiating with PeaceHealth executives in February 2023 and have been working on an expired contract since April 2023. 

The Oregon Nurses Association (ONA) is the state’s largest and most influential nursing organization. We are a professional association and labor union which represents more than 18,000 nurses and allied health workers throughout the state, including more than 90 nurses at PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Home Care Services and nearly 1,500 frontline nurses at PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center. ONA’s mission is to advocate for nursing, quality health care and healthy communities. For more information visit: www.OregonRN.org.

 

Oregon Governor Tina Kotek is asking legislators to approve her 500-million-dollar housing production bill.  It would create the Housing Accountability and Production Office.  It would streamline the development process to build homes.  Construction plans would be available along with city codes to expedite development.  

The bill would also make 500-million-dollars available to help cities build infrastructure, like water and sewer connections, for new housing developments.  The money would come from existing state resources.

 

Last Saturday, troopers from both the Salem and McMinnville Area Commands responded to Polk County to help look for a missing child. At about 5:30 p.m. a four-year-old child had wandered off from his home on property which includes 20 acres of thick vegetation.

The child had been missing for about two hours when law enforcement officers from numerous agencies arrived on scene to assist with the search.

After about four hours on his own in the cold, the child was found by an OSP trooper near a pullout on Hwy. 18 about one mile west of the property. Upon seeing the trooper, the child asked, “Can you take me home?”

The child was evaluated by medical personnel on scene and reunited with his grateful family.

The OSP is  grateful this child was found so quickly and unharmed. We appreciate the compassion and dedication displayed by our troopers and all the responding personnel.

 

The Oregon Department of Human Services has expanded its online resources to be more accessible for Spanish-speaking users, the department announced.

As of January 23, website users can access an extra 65 pages on the ODHS website that have been translated by a native Spanish speaker, without the use of online translation tools. ODHS officials said there are now a total of 110 Spanish-language speeches on the website. The expansion of the site also includes a more robust navigation and search bar to help visitors find what they need.

Visitors to the site can access the Spanish pages by selecting “Sitio en Español” on the top right side of the main website’s banner. For individual pages, visitors can navigate between Spanish and English versions by clicking the “Español” or “English” buttons under the headers of the pages. Other languages are also available under the “Languages” button on the upper right of the ODHS website, but most translations other than Spanish are provided by Google Translate.

 

Former students and faculty from nearly every one of Oregon’s seven public universities told lawmakers this week the state’s higher education system is broken, with students unable to afford housing, relying on Medicaid and food assistance and strapped with mounting debts.

They blamed the failures, in part, on two laws passed more than a decade ago that changed how Oregon’s public universities are governed. The laws gave universities and their boards greater power over budget decisions, while scaling back state regulation.

A new proposal, House Bill 4125, would mandate a study of the university governance system and whether it and the state’s Higher Education Coordinating Commission, which is supposed to boost postsecondary access attainment, need to be overhauled.

The proposal is sponsored by state Rep. Farrah Chaichi, D-Beaverton; Rep. Ben Bowman, D-Tigard; and state Sen. Chris Gorsek, D-Gresham. 

Ben Cannon, executive director of the state’s higher education commission since it began in 2013 and a former state representative who approved the system, said many of the problems blamed on the governing system existed before it was created. 

In 2011, the state Legislature passed Senate Bill 242, which shifted governance of Oregon’s universities and community colleges from a hodgepodge of state education agencies to one – the Higher Education Coordinating Commission – to bring cohesion to the universities and community college system and to allow them to better collaborate. 

 

An Oregon marijuana producer has lost its license for alleged violations.  

The Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission pulled the license from Solray Enterprise.  They’re accused of transferring 80 pounds of marijuana to a private residence, which is against the law.  They also had 100 pounds of marijuana missing.  The OLCC requires marijuana producers to keep track of their product.  

Solray couldn’t account for a hundred pounds of marijuana.  The OLCC investigation is ongoing.

 

Oregon households that receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits and lost food during the winter storms now have until Feb. 16 to request replacement benefits. 

The Feb. 16 deadline applies to 27 counties — including Jackson, Josephine and Klamath counties, the Oregon Department of Human Services said in a news release.

The other 24 counties are Benton, Clackamas, Clatsop, Columbia, Coos, Crook, Deschutes, Douglas, Gilliam, Hood River, Jefferson, Lane, Lincoln, Linn, Marion, Morrow, Multnomah, Polk, Sherman, Tillamook, Umatilla, Wasco, Washington and Yamhill. 

Residents who live in other counties can request replacements within 10 days of the date the food was destroyed, the release said. 

“Households who disposed of food bought with SNAP benefits that was destroyed due to these events can request that replacement benefits be issued for the cost of the lost food,” the release said. “The maximum amount of SNAP that can be replaced is the value of the food up to the normal monthly benefit for the household. Households should be prepared to provide a list of the lost food, the cost to replace it, and may have to provide proof of the event that destroyed the food.”

Once approved, replacement benefits will be added to residents’ EBT cards.

 

Researchers at OHSU say multi-dose vaccines could be more effective if given in alternating arms. 

 

Dr. Marcel Curlin studied blood tests from about 2,000 OHSU staffers who agreed to take part in the project, in the early days of the COVID vaccine roll-out. About half took both doses in the same arm, the other half alternated arms.

Dr. Curlin says they’re learning more about the human immune system,

More study is needed to determine whether the results hold true with other immunizations or when administered in a leg, like for infants.

 

Daylight saving time begins this year at 2 a.m. on March 10, 2024.

Most devices these days will adjust automatically to the time change, but don’t forget to set any traditional clocks forward by one hour.

Twice a year — when we spring forward and then again when we fall back — we get questions about this: Didn’t Oregon decide not to participate in the time change any longer? So why are we still doing it?

In 2019, Oregon and Washington agreed to partner to abolish seasonal time changes, remaining on daylight saving time year-round. California also joined the agreement, seemingly paving the way for the West Coast states to get rid of standard time permanently.

However, any such change is dependent on approval by the federal government, which hasn’t happened.

In 2023, members of Congress reintroduced the long-stalled Sunshine Protection Act, which would allow states to remain on daylight saving time all year.

That bill has yet to make it out of committee.

 

Changes are coming to the way Oregonians apply for unemployment benefits.

Starting on March 4, those seeking unemployment insurance will submit claims on a new website called Frances Online. It’s part of the state’s $106 million, multi-year effort to upgrade the Oregon Employment Department’s technology to make it more secure and user-friendly.

The state has been gradually migrating to the new system, and the unemployment insurance claims portal is the last major step in the transition, according to Unemployment Insurance Director Lindsi Leahy.

The old system dates back to the 1990s. Multiple state audits have found that it was unable to handle complicated claims and had trouble incorporating rule changes. Officials acknowledged it lacked streamlined ways for people to communicate with the state about their claims.

Before the new system goes live for users, both the old and new online portals will be down for a few days in preparation for the launch on March 4. Starting at 5 p.m. on Feb. 28, users will not be able to access the sites, including for Paid Leave Oregon. Also, customer service phone lines and online support will be closed starting on Feb. 28 and won’t reopen until Frances goes live.

Officials say to avoid an interruption in benefits, claims must be submitted in the old system by 5 p.m. on Feb. 28. Unemployment insurance claimants will then need to create a new account in Frances after 8 a.m. on March 4, officials say.

BOARD OF FORESTRY HOSTS VIRTUAL SPECIAL PUBLIC MEETING ON FEB. 23, 2024

SALEM, Ore. — The Oregon Board of Forestry will hold a virtual special meeting starting at 1 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 23. The meeting will be livestreamed on the department’s YouTube channel.

The board’s business agenda includes:

  • Post-disturbance harvest rulemaking

The agenda is available on the board’s webpage. Live public testimony will be taken during this special meeting. Sign-up is required and instructions to provide live testimony are available online. Sign-up closes Wednesday, Feb. 21 at noon. Written comments can be submitted before or up to Feb. 21, noon, to boardofforestry@odf.oregon.gov.

Accommodations for people with disabilities, and special materials, services, or assistance can be arranged by calling ODF’s Public Affairs Office at least 72 hours in advance of the meeting at 503-945-7200 or by email at forestryinformation@odf.oregon.gov.

The Oregon Board of Forestry consists of seven citizens nominated by the Governor and confirmed by the Oregon Senate. Responsibilities include appointing the State Forester, setting management direction for state-owned forests, adopting rules governing timber harvest and other practices on private forestland, and promoting sustainable management of Oregon’s 30 million-acre forestland base.

 

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For information or prices on plans, simply call us today at 541-363-7503 or email us at Info@BasinLife.com.  Let us keep your business top-of -mind!

 

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