WEATHER IN LINCOLN COUNTY


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Fixing Schooner Creek Road, launching fireworks, caring for children and three run for council.

Lincoln City

Although the general manager of the Chinook Winds offered to take the high cost of 4th of July fireworks off the back of Lincoln City City Hall, the city council said, “no, we’re going to give the Taft business community a shot at it like we promised them.” Mayor Dick Anderson said it’s been a goal of the council to get fireworks out of the city budget. In response, they were approached by Taft businesspersons who said it would be a big public relations plus for them to have fireworks on the beach in Taft. Mayor Anderson said it was agreed that the whole point is to raise enough money to make the event self-supporting. But July 4th is three and a half months away, and the mayor says he doesn’t think “they’re there yet” but he and the council still want to give Taft a chance.

So this 4th of July, the city will likely pay all or some of the $16,000 cost, along with police and fire department personnel overtime, porta potties and other ancillary functions. However, Mayor Anderson says if Taft can’t pull it off or can’t get traction on an on-going basis, the council would certainly entertain another offer from the Chinook Winds for 4th of July 2012, which Mayor Anderson says remains an open offer from the general manager. And of course the fireworks would be set off at the Chinook Winds.

What to do about the slide-damaged Schooner Creek Road was also in front of the council. Councilors ordered a letter be sent to Lincoln County Public Works Director Jim Buisman asking that he not put in a temporary one lane road through the slide area, even if it continues to be an inconvenience for the few neighbors that have to drive around the long way to get to town. The council agreed with their public works director who expressed concern that car traffic and a few heavy trucks might be all that it takes to accelerate the slide and possibly damage the city’s only water line, that runs alongside the road, from its treatment plant to Highway 101. The council wants the county to hold off until the city can get another back-up water line built along Drift Creek Road, which they believe they can have in place by Memorial day, May 30th. They said it would still give Mr. Buisman plenty of time to repair Schooner Creek Road during the Summer. (more…)

The Siletz Tribal Charitable Contribution Fund heads south to Waldport!

Provided by Lincoln County Schools
Crestview Heights Receives Grant for 10 Computers

Crestview Heights School in Waldport is one of the recent beneficiaries of the generous Siletz Tribal Charitable Contribution Fund distribution, receiving $7,190 to purchase 10 new computers and monitors for student use.

“For the three years I have been at this school, we have put our funds into keeping teachers in the classroom and haven’t spent any building funds on computers,” says Principal Mary Schaer. “Our head secretary, Patty Hunter, came up with the idea to apply for a grant for new computers, and I’m glad she did. We are very appreciative of the Siletz Tribe for helping us to obtain new computers to replace some that are six to eight years old.”

Along with Schaer and Hunter, others on the grant-writing team were teachers Terri Hanshumaker, Jason Nehmer, Bob Briggs, and Krista Williams.

Software for the new computers will be purchased through school funds, and the school district’s Tech Department will install them as an in-kind donation.

During the distribution ceremony Feb. 4 at Chinook Winds Casino Resort in Lincoln City, 35 not-for-profit organizations were awarded $123,227 in grants. Crestview Heights was the third largest award of the evening. Other South County recipients were Waldport High School Parents of the Class of 2011, $500 for the alcohol- and drug-free graduation event; Friends of Waldport, $3,000 for medical and dental care; and Our Coastal Village in Yachats, $2,400 for enhancement of local gardens and educational outreach.

You’re reading local news on an online. You’re also a part of a fast growing trend.

A new survey of American news consumers has just been released from one of the leading survey companies in the country. They are the non-partisan, non-profit Pew Institute. They survey many avenues of contemporary American life, including the state of the American News Media.

The findings of their latest project, “The State of the News Media 2011” is a real eye opener, especially if you’re a business owner who advertises. Click Here.

Make up school day for day lost to the Tsunami

School Make-Up Dates- Tsumani Warning

Lincoln County School District schools will make up the day missed Friday, March 11th due to the tsunami warning. Because of other events earlier this school year, the make-up date will vary by area.
For schools in the east (Toledo Elementary and Toledo Jr./Sr. High) and west (Sam Case, Newport Intermediate, Newport Prep/High Schools), the make-up date is Monday, May 2.
For schools in the north (Oceanlake, Taft Elementary, Taft 7-12) and south (Crestview Heights and Waldport High), the make-up date is Monday, May 9. These two areas will also have school on May 2; this was a make-up day designated earlier.
This schedule is in keeping with the News Release of December 6, 2010. District calendars will be updated on the LCSD web site in the next few days.

Highway 36 now back open…

1:17pm From ODOT

OR 36 is now open to one lane of travel a half-mile west of OR 99, south of Junction City, after being closed for down trees and power lines. Flaggers are controlling travel through the area in alternating directions. Motorists should expect delays. The signalized intersection of OR 99 and OR 36 continues to be without power. Motorists are required by law to treat the intersection as a four-way stop. Please use caution while negotiating the intersection.

Keep your vehicles locked. An escaped car thief may be lurking about in Oregon.

Nathan Simpson, escapee

A be-on-the-lookout bulletin has gone out to Oregon law enforcement for this man, Nathan Simpson, 30, who escaped from an inmate work camp in the California Delta, just northeast of Oakland, California. Authorities in Suisun City say Simpson, who is a repeat auto thief, has friends and associates in Oregon and may have headed up north in an effort to remain hidden. Most of the cars he stole reportedly were from the Siskiyou County area of California, just south of the Oregon state line.

Simpson is described as tall, 150 pounds, with brown eyes and hair, and fair complected. He was last seen March 13th at around 9:30pm wearing Oregon Blaze colored jeans and a shirt with “C.D.C.R.” lettering on the back.

Anyone with information or knowledge about the possible whereabouts of Simpson are urged to contact 530-257-2181, ext. 4173, or 9-1-1.

Depoe Bay also interested in disaster aid for their damaged port facilities.

Depoe Bay’s Tsunami destroyed Dock #1 may be added to the list of possible disaster qualified assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Tsunami tidal surges rushed into the bay just as an incoming fishing boat had cleared the bridge. The surge shoved the fishing boat around a broad arch inside the harbor, up and onto Dock #1 which broke the dock in half. Damage to the fishing boat and to two others tied up nearby was minor.

Ironically, Depoe Bay had just awarded a bid for a partial rebuild of the dock’s floating pods, which now cannot move forward. City Recorder Pury Murray said city hall is also contacting its insurance company to determine whether the replacement of the dock would be covered.

Meanwhile port officials in Brookings, Gold Beach and Port Orford, as well as Crescent City, are working with congressional delegations to gain FEMA assistance to repair their badly damaged port facilities.

Better teacher evaluations, more help for students wanting to go to college and changes to Charter School laws.

Stand Rally in Salem

Provided by Stand for Children.
New Legislation with Stand’s Support

Tuition Equity for All Oregon Children
This bill, which has broad bi-partisan support, is an important step forward in creating equal opportunities for all children. It grants in-state tuition to students entering the university system who have attended school in Oregon for at least three concurrent years and have graduated from an Oregon high school, regardless of documentation status.

Alternate Pathways to Certification for Teachers
This law would enable Oregon school districts to diversify their teacher workforce and hire in hard-to-fill subject areas. Studies have shown no significant difference between the achievement of students of non-traditional teachers and teachers who attended colleges of education. We support a limited number of high-quality alternate pathways, as is done in nearly every other state, to help bring more great teachers into the classroom.

(more…)

Oregon Legislature back to work

The Oregon Legislature resumes their lawmaking duties this week, taking up issues from unemployment benefits to prohibitions on driving with a dog in your lap. A quick rundown from the Oregonian. Click here.

Preventing dog attacks. Sheriff Dotson’s “Tip of the Week”

DOG ATTACKS – IT CAN HAPPEN TO YOU

There are thousands of dogs in our community and most of them are well mannered family pets. There are other dogs that are kept merely as guards or symbols of power and have little or no training. All of these dogs, no matter how small or large, trained or untrained, are capable of biting if provoked. From the slightest nip to an all out attack, all dog bites are a serious matter and can easily damage the reputation of our beloved canine companions. Whether or not you are a dog owner, there are many steps you can take to reduce the number of dog bite incidents.

Young children are at greatest risk for being bitten by a dog. Children should never be left unattended with a dog, and should be taught to be dog savvy. Teach your children never to approach a dog they do not know and to be calm and gentle with the dogs they do know. Teach them to let not just sleeping dogs lay, but also eating, chewing and nursing dogs. Many dog bite incidents occur when a dog is trying to protect something in their possession such as a bone, toy, or their puppies.

Everyone, children and adults alike, should take into consideration the status of any dog they encounter. Dogs that are chained are especially likely to bite. Much like people, dogs can be crankier when very hungry, thirsty or overheated, or if they are sick or injured. If approached by an unknown dog, stay calm and still. The dog will likely just sniff you and leave after it determines you’re not a threat. (more…)

Oregon roads and highways are filled with repair trucks, trying to turn the lights back on for thousands of Oregonians

From OSP

Utility crews continue to work on downed powerlines and poles in the region. Highway 214 between Woodburn and Mt. Angel will remain closed until mid-morning as utility crews work on several powerlines and poles that were downed by strong winds late yesterday. In Lane County, Highway 36 will remain closed at milepost 51 for most of the morning. Highway 126E is now open to one lane with flaggers at milepost 24.5. Motorists should avoid these areas or expect delays. Motorists should stay alert today for wind blow debris and materials on roadways

A little bit of Madison Wisconsin, right here in Newport coming up Tuesday.

Madison WI, last week

A nationwide political action group, MoveOn.org, will hold a rally at 20th and Highway 101 on Tuesday in Newport to protest what they contend America’s decline as a world power is being caused by the country’s super rich hijacking the economic and political systems of the country. They claim that these new super rich families were made richer with taxpayer “too big to fail” TARP funds and an endless stream of taxbreaks. (Much of those bail out funds have been paid back.) They claim the same people who caused the Great Recession are now withholding cash from the economy which is starving economic activity and prolonging the recession. MoveOn claims that America’s largest banks are sitting on trillions of dollars while unemployment checks for what was once a proud middle class are running out.

On March 15th MoveOn will also call on Americans to pressure the federal government to restore a tax code that will support the country. They contend that the country is awash in money, but that it’s in too few hands. And the result is, medical care for the sick and the elderly are being cut to the bone along with public education including universities and colleges. In short, the country does not have a spending problem, it has a revenue problem. Of course millions of conservatives across the country say it’s just the opposite that government must live within its means, and that continued deficit spending will only further retard the country’s economic recovery. (more…)

Writers on the Edge publisher Carla Perry now heads up local land conservancy

Carla Perry

The Central Coast Land Conservancy (CCLC) recently received a grant from Pacific Coast Joint Venture to create the position of Coordinator. Carla Perry of Newport has been selected to fill that position.

Carla Perry, a resident of Newport, is the founder of the nonprofit organization Writers On The Edge and the Nye Beach Writers’ Series. She served as a volunteer director of the organization from inception in 1997 through 2010, for which she was awarded an Oregon Book Award and the Governor’s Art Award for the quality and longevity of the Writers’ Series and for her outstanding commitment to Oregon’s literary community. She is the owner of Dancing Moon Press, a full-service book publishing company. She will use her experience and skills in program development and fundraising to assist the Central Coast Land Conservancy in these areas. Her work will result in more strategic conservation easements and land acquisitions. (more…)

Windshields around Newport may have been cracked by this stuff

The hail that fell in Newport Sunday afternoon varied in size tremendously, from normal size to this kind of stuff, more resembling an ice cube than a hail fragment. Thank you Donna Carter for letting us see what fell at your house and why the windshield shops in Oregon are going to be a little busier than they anticipated in the week ahead.

Click on picture to enlarge it.

Storm knocks Pacific Power customers for a loop.

The storm that went through Oregon today knocked out power to 74,000 homes and businesses from Albany to Crescent City. Pacific Power reports power will not be restored anytime soon for some of the area, and that they should be prepared for an extended period without electricity. Here’s Pacific Power’s news release:

PORTLAND, Ore. – A strong late winter storm has caused power outages for about 50,000 Pacific Power customers in the Northwest, stretching from the northern Willamette Valley to Crescent City, Calif.

Crews are at work assessing and repairing damage in more than a dozen communities. At peak, after the storm as many as 74,000 customers were without power due to more than 2,000 individual outages. By 7 p.m., local repair crews, augmented by contract crews had cut that total by a third so that now about 50,000 customers, derived from 1,600 separate outages, remain without power.

“We are making good progress and appreciate the patience and safety consciousness we are seeing from customers” said Bill Eaquinto, vice president, operations. “At this time, customers who lack power need to prepare for their electricity to be out for up to 24 hours from the time of this news release. This is due to the severity and widespread nature of the damage.”

Transmission, distribution and substation equipment have been impacted and/or damaged and must be repaired in many areas. It is a time-consuming and exacting task to check all of this equipment for safety before restoration can be complete.

To take on the widespread and extensive work necessary to safely restore customers’ electricity, Pacific Power has issued and “all hands” call and is moving multiple crews into southern Oregon and the Willamette Valley from northern California, Pendleton, Hood River, Bend and Portland. Pacific Power has also enlisted contract crews from throughout Oregon and Washington to tackle the task at hand, with safety of crews and customers as a top priority. All types of field personnel are taking on assignments to assist in the effort.

As of 7 p.m., these customer outages persist in the following communities:

Albany, 1,215
Coos County, 5,000
Corvallis, 38
Cottage Grove, 304
Dallas, 1,020
Grants Pass, 11,829
Junction City, 275
Lebanon, 14,084
Medford area, 18, 261
Myrtle Point/Powers, 2,100
Roseburg, 5,541

Work will continue through the night, though for safety reasons, progress is slowed by the darkness. Pacific Power’s priority is to safely restore all customers at the earliest possible time. Again, though, because of the extensive, widespread and isolated damage, customers are urged to expect and prepare for as much as a 24 hour outage.

Be Safe: These things are true anytime, but are especially important when storms damage power lines. Stay away from all downed power lines. Even if lines are not sparking, they could be energized and extremely dangerous.

Be smart: To ease the inconvenience of power outages and assist crews in restoring power, Pacific Power suggests the following tips and safety precautions:
* Call and report the outage to Pacific Power at 1-877-508-5088.
* Candles should never be left unattended or used for extended periods. Use a flashlight or other battery-powered lighting source.
* Use a fireplace or wood stove to keep warm. Pay careful attention to fire hazards.
* Never use kerosene or propane heaters inside without proper ventilation. They create dangerous fumes. Also, don’t use charcoal in your house or garage.
* Never use a barbecue grill indoors. Cook over sterno cans.
* Don’t drive over downed power lines.
* Turn on your porch light switch. After crews complete repairs, they patrol the area to confirm lights are on.
* As much as possible, do not open refrigerators and freezers-they will keep food and perishables inside cold for some time if not opened.
* Preserve body heat by wearing multiple layers of clothing. Add a hat and blanket to stay warm. Blankets and towels around windows and doors help keep the heat in.
* Check on your neighbors, especially those who may need special assistance. Also, check with others who have electricity, to see if you can visit.
* Protect your pipes during freezing weather by wrapping them with insulation. Also, leave faucets dripping so water won’t freeze and crack the pipes.
* Generators should be outside or in a well-ventilated unoccupied space
* Make sure generators are properly wired for your home or business, and don’t connect a generator directly to your home’s main fuse box or circuit panel. This can create a dangerous backfeed hazard for line crews.

The valley got hit a lot harder than the coast

Click to enlarge photos.

As you can see below, Newport and other areas of the Central Coast got pretty hard rain and hail for a while this afternoon, but it was nothing like what was forecasted to happen. The higher winds came up out of the south and hit the Willamette Valley much harder than the coast. Here on Highway 26, about three miles east of Sandy, high winds pushed over some very tall trees, one of them falling right across the power lines. Initially it came in as a traffic crash, but arriving first responders quickly learned it was strictly a weather caused incident. ODOT workers cleared the highway. The power company was called and flaggers kept the traffic flowing in a single lane, giving crews enough room to safely work in.

Wild ride with a hail and lightning storm in Newport


(Click image to play video)

One minute sunshine, the next minute rain, hail and back-to-back lightning. That was Newport at around 6:30pm tonight. Here’s a little video sampling of it, with Newport fire fighters called out to check a report of a lightning strike on an electrical pole transformer. Nothing found out of the ordinary on the pole or on nearby buildings.

 

 

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