Noon: Bad crash on Highway 20 about four miles east of Newport.
Oregon’s Unemployment Rate Remains at 4.0 Percent in August
Oregon’s unemployment rate was 4.0 percent in August, the same as in June and July. The U.S. unemployment rate was 3.7 percent during each of the most recent three months of June, July, and August.
Oregon’s unemployment rate has been between 4.0 percent and 4.4 percent for 34 consecutive months dating back to November 2016. This sustained stretch of low unemployment is unprecedented in comparable records dating back to 1976. In the 40 years prior to 2016, Oregon’s unemployment rate was never below 4.7 percent.
In August, Oregon’s total nonfarm payroll employment added 900 jobs, following a gain of 2,400 jobs in July. Monthly gains for August were strongest in leisure and hospitality (+1,600 jobs) and professional and business services (+1,100). These gains were offset by job losses in several industries: wholesale trade (-900 jobs); other services (-900); retail trade (-700); and health care and social assistance (-600).
Recent employment growth has slowed from the rapid expansion over the prior several years. In the first eight months of 2019, total nonfarm employment gains averaged 1,000 jobs per month. This was a marked slowdown from the average gain of 3,000 jobs per month in 2018. So far in 2019, several industries have cut jobs, with information down the most in percentage terms (-2,000 jobs, or -5.7%). Several other major industries shed jobs in that time: finance and insurance ( 1,200 jobs, or 2.1%); leisure and hospitality (-2,600 jobs, or -1.2%); and retail trade (-2,200 jobs, or 1.0%). These losses were offset by job growth over the past eight months in education and health services (6,400 jobs, or 2.2%); professional and business services (4,200 jobs, or 1.7%); and manufacturing (3,100 jobs, or 1.6%).
Newport City Councilors Monday night started shaking the ground underneath some long running challenges like parks, taxi cabs, styrofoam food containers and discouraging the construction of “dream homes” precariously perched atop unstable shore bluffs.
It was agreed among the councilors that over the past ten years, or so, city’s parks have been less than loved. Some are not being maintained to standards that many people would demand. Lately there have been complaints about city parks and their need for upgrades and better maintenance. Currently the city Public Works Department has control of those sorts of things but they have been so busy with other vital infrastructure that they haven’t had the time to pay enough attention to the parks.
It just so happens that a special forward-looking needs assessment for Newport Parks has been developed and forwarded to the city council. The council agreed that the new Parks Master Plan would probably be better off in the hands of the city’s Parks and Recreation Department – and the council agreed. So it’s anticipated that the new arrangement will be back before the council for proper findings and direction from the city council to inject new vigor and passion into Newport’s parks system.
After some research and trying to find out who’s on first, the city council agreed to keep cab service in Newport status quo – no changes. It means that Yaquina and Pacific cab companies will remain the only two city franchised cab services to help Newport area residents get around the area at a reasonable cost. The two companies said there have been other individual cab start-ups but they tend to disrupt the smooth operations of Yaquina and Pacific because these solo intruders “cherry pick” the lucrative day-parts that Yaquina and Pacific rely on to stay in business. Besides that, some of the “outlier” cab drivers don’t pay the taxes or supplemental insurance normally required of a licensed cab company – a “fair play” aspect that is missing in the equation.
So the council decided to keep things as they are – Yaquina and Pacific Cab companies will stick to serving the Newport area while always keeping at least one cab at the ready in Newport during times when their other cabs are driving customers to points outside the Newport area – like to the Eugene or Portland Airports.
Next, the council’s recent move to ban plastic bags within the Newport city limits has spurred a movement to also go after styrofoam containers – especially the ones that carry food from restaurants, food both whole and left-overs. But that’s a mission that will take some time to come to fruition. But they’re confident it will come. Styrofoam debris is almost as common as rocks on the beach – so the council, like many others, would love to see it all go away – either reprocessed or permanently kept out of the environment. The council raised the option of joining forces with the Oregon Coastal Caucus along with state and local governments to launch a highly coordinated attack on styrofoam.
Next, the city council focused on what appears to be a rising number of newcomers visiting the coast and then wanting to build luxury homes on bluffs overlooking the beaches. But time and again, these new homeowners find out that seaside bluffs can be very unstable and prone to slump out from underneath causing the homes to cascade down onto the beach below. The council was told that part of the problem is that the state doesn’t having strict enough rules and regulations to prevent big homes from getting too close to the edge. It was agreed that some regulatory clean up work is needed on rules aimed at “bluff luxury homes” and whether any such construction is really THAT safe.
And finally, one councilor suggested that the increasing popularity of electric powered cars is creating opportunities to boost tourism on the coast. Councilor Ryan Parker said there is a Western Oregon movement of electric car buffs to have more battery re-charging stations interspersed from the Valley to coastal cities like Lincoln City, Newport, Waldport and Florence. – especially along Highway 20 from Corvallis to Newport. Parker added that with recent great leaps in battery technology, (going father on one charge),the addition of the charging stations could be an irresistible temptation for valley folks to visit the coast far more often.
by Le’Anne McEachern, Au.D.
Doctor of Audiology
Hearingnewport.com 541 272 5015
Can Hearing Aids Prevent Memory Loss Down the Road? An overview by Dr. Le’Anne McEachern, Newport, OR
For people with hearing loss, using a hearing aid is associated with a reduced risk of three common health problems of aging—dementia, depression, and falls—according to a new study in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.
This study adds to the growing body of research that links hearing loss to memory issues and dementia. “Cognitive decline is much higher among people with hearing loss,” says study author Elham Mahmoudi, Ph.D., an assistant professor in the department of family medicine at the University of Michigan.
The new study also suggests using hearing aids might help delay the onset of dementia in some people, and it’s the largest study to date to look at this possible connection, according to Mahmoudi.
Here’s what this and other research has shown about hearing loss and the brain, and what it all means for you:
The Hearing Aids-Dementia Connection
The new study found that people who received hearing aids in the three years after being diagnosed with hearing loss had lower rates of dementia, depression, and falls than those who didn’t get the devices. To get these findings, University of Michigan researchers examined managed care insurance claims from 114,862 adults with hearing loss between 2008 and 2016. All were age 66 or older. The researchers looked at the study subjects’ insurance claims for three years after their hearing loss diagnosis. They did this to determine which people with hearing loss had been prescribed a hearing aid, which had not, and which study subjects in both groups were later diagnosed with dementia, depression, or a fall-related injury. Then they compared the difference between the hearing aid group and the non-hearing aid group.
What earlier studies have found
A lot of prior research has found that hearing loss is connected with an increased risk of memory problems. In a 2018 analysis published in JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery, researchers pooled the results of 36 studies and found that age-related hearing loss was linked to an increased risk of dementia and cognitive decline and impairment. Other previous research has also linked hearing loss to depression and falling.
Fewer studies have been conducted on whether the use of a hearing aid might delay or prevent the onset of dementia, says Jennifer Deal, Ph.D., an assistant scientist in the department of epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, who wasn’t involved in the new study.
But like the new research, several small studies that have addressed the question in recent years have found that the use of hearing aids is linked with a lower risk of dementia.
How Hearing Loss Might Affect the Brain
Scientists don’t have definitive answers about the effects of hearing loss on brain health. One theory, according to Deal, is that when your hearing is damaged, the brain must expend more effort to decode the sound signals it takes in, possibly at the expense of other brain functions.
Another hypothesis is that hearing loss changes the physical structure of the brain in a way that could harm memory—and some evidence from brain imaging studies supports this theory. Hearing loss can also increase a person’s feeling of social isolation because the condition makes it harder to communicate. And social isolation is linked to a number of health problems, from heart disease to Alzheimer’s disease.
Could Hearing Loss Cause Dementia?
Neither the prior studies nor the new one offer firm proof that hearing loss is a cause of dementia. In fact, it’s not clear yet what actually causes Alzheimer’s disease or some other types of dementia. The new study was observational— meaning it looked only at data on existing health outcomes, rather than testing the effects of a hearing aid. So, while it found a pattern, it couldn’t establish that hearing problems actually cause dementia. And, say researchers, a number of other factors could have influenced the outcome of the study. For instance, the researchers weren’t able to factor in socioeconomic status in their analysis. That’s important because people with more education and economic resources have been found to be less likely to experience cognitive decline as they age.
For scientists to be able to say definitively that hearing loss is a cause of dementia, a randomized controlled trial is needed, comparing similar groups of people, some of whom have their hearing loss treated with a hearing aid, and some who don’t. Deal and her research team are currently conducting one such trial, so she hopes to be able to answer this question within a few years.
A man has turned himself in to authorities in connection with the church fire in Gleneden Beach over the weekend. Arrested was Jordan Savariego for Arson, Burglary, Criminal Trespass and Criminal Mischief. He’s being held on a third of a million dollars bail.
The fire broke out Sunday afternoon and spread very quickly throughout the Gleneden Beach Christian Church at Gleneden Beach Loop and Alderwood. There were no injuries, but the church was very heavily damaged.