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Newport woman loses life in crash

Car on Highway 20 suddenly left the road and rolled down a hill four miles east of Newport

Tuesday afternoon at noon Oregon State Police (OSP) and emergency personnel responded to a report of of a vehicle crash on US Highway 20 near milepost 4. Once on scene, it was determined the driver,  Linda C. Dodson, age 68, from Newport, was pronounced deceased at the scene.

The preliminary investigation revealed Dodson was driving a 1999 Nissan Pathfinder East on US Hwy 20 four miles east of Newport. A witness reported seeing the Pathfinder start to swerve and then it veered off the road from the south shoulder. The Pathfinder went down an embankment, struck a tree, and rolled onto the passenger side of the vehicle.

Dodson was pronounced deceased at the scene. Dodson was traveling with her dog “Lucy.” Lucy was rescued from the wreck and transported to the Lincoln County Animal Shelter. Lucy was transported to a local veterinarian where she was evaluated and released. Friends of Dodson retrieved Lucy to care for her.

During the course of the investigation, a separate non-injury crash occurred near the crash site and was considered a secondary crash. The second crash occurred when vehicles were slowing down for the fatal crash and one vehicle rear-ended another.  

Toledo Fire Department, Oregon Department of Transportation, Toledo Police Department, and the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Department assisted OSP. The highway was blocked or partially blocked for seven hours.

Dune Buggy drivers…play safe and polite out there….

Near Reedsport
Oregon Coast

Upcoming public check point at Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area to be relocated to 10 mile OHV Route

Reedsport, OR – The previously scheduled OHV public check point at Umpqua Riding Area will now be held at 10 mile OHV Route from 11am – 1pm.

Forest Service officials are reminding riders that the purpose of the checkpoints is to verify compliance with existing OHV regulations. Forest Protection Officers and Law Enforcement Officers will be issuing citations for OHV users who do not comply with sound limits and other off-road regulations such as use of safety flags, OHV permit stickers and OHV safety education cards.

The Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area (ODNRA) is managed for multiple recreational uses, both motorized and non-motorized. Due to its unique topography, varied recreational uses and proximity to residential areas, currently a 93 decibel sound limit is applied to all OHVs within the ODNRA.

For more information about regulations at the ODNRA, visit or call the ODNRA Visitor center at 541-271-6000. For information regarding State of Oregon off-highway vehicle regulations, visit

Traffic Alert: Highway 20 four miles east of Newport

U.S. 20 Corvallis-Newport Highway is blocked by a serious crash at milepost 4, two miles west of Toledo. The eastbound lanes are closed. Traffic is being flagged through the area and there is a long backup. The road is expected to be blocked for several hours for crash investigation and cleanup. Travelers are advised to take alternate routes or delay travel. Check or call 2-1-1 for current road conditions.

Senator Ron Wyden winds up a long overdue pitch

Ron Wyden, D
Proposing bold changes to the U.S. tax system…

From Oregon Senator Ron Wyden
America has two tax codes: one for workers who pay taxes out of every paycheck and one for the ultra-wealthy who cheat the system to pay what they want, when they want and sometimes nothing at all. In fact, the average family worth more than $100 million has never paid taxes on more than half of their wealth.
Our broken tax code allows millionaires and billionaires to use largely untaxed assets to build their wealth even more without ever paying what they owe. Working families, on the other hand, struggle to save after paying their mortgage, buying groceries or making their student loan payments. By letting the rich play by a different set of rules, the deck is stacked against working families.
I have a plan to change that. My proposal would create one tax code by treating wealth the same as wages. The wealthiest Americans would finally have to pay their fair share and pay it on time while the middle class would see no increase in their taxes.
The extra revenue created by making the wealthy pay what they owe would be invested into Social Security to safeguard these critical hard-earned benefits for future generations. By simply requiring the most fortunate to pay taxes on income generated by their wealth – just like cops, nurses and factory workers already do – we would generate enough revenue to protect Social Security for decades to come. Over the past 30 years, Social Security has been robbed of more than $1 trillion due to growing income inequality, but creating a fair tax code would combat that trend.
It’s time to treat wealth like wages and safeguard Social Security for generations to come, and my plan is the way to do it.

Sen. Ron Wyden

Yard Burning begins again Thursday, September 19th

Backyard burning
Keep an eye on it…burning season begins again Thursday, September 19th.
Archive photo

Yard Debris Burning resumes in Lincoln County effective Thursday, September 19

The Lincoln County Fire Defense Board, and the nine fire protection agencies are opening burn season Thursday, September 19, 2019. With our recent rain and forecasted precipitation, the risk of fire spread has decreased and is expected to remain at a low level.

This summer’s weather was not as dry as the previous 2 summers. This kept fuel moisture levels higher and moderated fire danger throughout our region. We thank the public for adhering to the burn regulations this summer. Their cooperation, along with the quick response of all of our Lincoln County firefighters helped keep wildfires to a minimum.

Many Lincoln County fire agencies require a permit to burn yard debris (also known as open burning. We encourage the public to contact their local fire agency for specific regulations regarding burning of yard debris. Below is contact information for all Lincoln County Fire Agencies:

North Lincoln Fire & Rescue           Depoe Bay Fire District                  Newport Fire 

541-996-2233                                     541-764-2202                                   

Seal Rock Fire District                     Central OR Coast Fire Dist.           Yachats Rural 
Fire Prot. Dist.

541-563-4441                                     541-563-3121                                   

Siletz Valley Fire District                  Toledo Fire Dept./E.L.C.R.F.P.D    Oregon Dept. of 
Forestry (Toledo Unit)

541-444-2043                                     541-336-3311                                   

Chief Robert Murphy
Fire Chief, Newport Fire Department, Lincoln County Fire Defense Board Chief, 245 NW 10TH ST, NEWPORT OR 97365 – (541)-265-9461 – FAX (541) 265-9463

Unemployment remains low in Oregon

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 Council: Parks Master Plan, Taxi Cab Service, thumbs down on styrofoam

Newport City Hall

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.

Does hearing loss and dementia go hand in hand?

by Le’Anne McEachern, Au.D.
Doctor of Audiology 541 272 5015
Newport, OR

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.

Self-accused church arsonist turns himself in…

Gleneden Beach Christian Church badly damaged by fire Sunday afternoon. Authorities say it was arson.

Jordan Savariego
Arrested in connection with Gleneden Beach church fire

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.

Mid Coast Watershed Council needs YOU to be on a fun work party!

Ari Blatt
Restoration Program Assistant for MidCoast Watershed Council

Yaquina Restoration Work Party for Orca Recovery Day

Date: Saturday, October 19th

Time: We will meet at the Eddyville Post Office at 9:45 AM to carpool/caravan/shuttle to the site about 15 minutes away. We will work until 2 PM with lunch/snack breaks as needed. 

What to Bring: Water and food, rain protection, working boots and gloves. We will provide some tools like loppers, hand clippers, and shovels for removing invasive species with, but more are encouraged.

Join the MidCoast Watersheds Council in removing invasive Himalayan blackberry and planting native species in the Upper Yaquina Watershed to support salmon and Orca recovery. 

As its name suggests, Himalayan blackberry does not originate from the Pacific Northwest, and its’ thorny, thicket-forming nature poses a challenge to native species establishment in riparian zones. With continual management, native plants can grow tall enough to eventually shade Himalayan blackberry out. But until then, the work of dedicated staff and volunteers is vital to ensuring successful restoration projects!

After enough area is cleared, the Work Party goal will be to plant more native trees and shrubs where gaps exist in the establishing riparian buffer. In addition to the shade that keeps invasive species out and stream temperatures cool, native plants provide the important watershed benefits of water filtration, soil stabilization, pollinator habitat, large woody debris recruitment, and carbon sequestration, among others—all  of which promote the recovery of salmon, and all the beings that depend on them. 

Site History:

The MidCoast Watersheds Council began prioritizing restoration work in the Upper Yaquina Watershed in 2007 after receiving funding to determine the factors limiting salmon recovery and identifying projects needed to address these limitations. In 2010, outreach to landowners in the Basin began, and on-the-ground work began just three years later with a focus on increasing access to cold water in the Yaquina’s tributary streams. This included the removal of 9 fish passage barriers, riparian planting on 3 acres, large wood placements, and channel re-meandering. Years after that, the restoration focus shifted to directly improving conditions in the Yaquina’s mainstem, with livestock fencing, riparian planting along 4 acres, bridge installation, and larger large wood placements via helicopter. Today, monitoring and maintenance continues on all 7 acres of riparian planting.

Please RSVP by contacting Restoration Program Assistant Ari Blatt at or (541)265-9195. 

Teen Book Art being produced at Newport Library

Newport Public Library

There’s a Teen Book Art event happening at the Newport Public Library!  Join us for Newport Library’s monthly Teen Third Thursday Event on September 19th starting at 3:45 and ending by 5:30 p.m.  Students, grades 6 – 12, are invited to a FREE Book Art event in the McEntee Room where drinks and snacks will be provided!  

For students attending there will be an opportunity to win a prize of their choice from a variety of goodies; gift certificates, books, a ps4 game, and more!   

Not sure what to read?  While you’re at the library you can ask one of our staff members to recommend a graphic novel, new fiction book or award winner.  We have something for everybody!  

Hope to see you soon for the Book Art!

Any questions please call the Newport Public Library at 541-265-2153.

Auction and Artists Celebration in Yachats….

Yachats Banner Project

Now in its third year, the Yachats Banner Project will hold  their annual  auction and  artist celebration October 5th,  from  5 PM – 7 PM in the Yachats Commons. Beverages and delicious treats, catered by the Drift Inn will be available.

Each spring local artists volunteer to design and paint banners.  This year the theme is  “Where Edges Meet.”  Banners are displayed along Hwy. 101, from June through September. On the first Saturday of October, they will be auctioned off raising money for the Helen West Arts Education Fund and the Yachats Chamber of Commerce. The Helen West Fund supports community and school  arts programs and  projects and is named for artist Helen West, who lived in Yachats until her passing in 2016. The Yachats Banner Project was started by the Friends of the Yachats Commons Foundation, and is now sponsored by Polly Plumb Productions.  Artist Mike Guerriero coordinates the project, prepares the banner canvases, and paints the pastel backs containing the Yachats lettering.

This year’s auction will be held on October 5th from 5 until 7 in the Commons Building in Yachats. The silent auction will end at 6:30 pm sharp. More than 30 banners will be on display. Visit the banner auction and view the banners up close. You just may find yourself bidding for one of these beauties.  For more information or to view the banners in advance of the auction visit  Polly Plumb Productions is a tax-exempt 501 (c) 3 organization that produces and supports diverse, artistic, colorful, whimsical, musical and intelligent arts and cultural programming.

They promise a whale of a good time…

Whales right up against Yaquina Head…
Roy Lowe photos

The Oregon Chapter of the American Cetacean Society is having their monthly speaker series meeting on Saturday September 21st from 10:00AM to 12:00PM. The meeting will be held at the Newport Public Library, 35 NW Nye, Newport, OR. The event is free and open to the public. Join us as Colleen Weiler of Whale & Dolphin Conservation discusses the Southern Resident Killer Whales.

Colleen is the Whale & Dolphin Conservation (WDC) Fellow, Rekos Fellowship for Orca Conservation. She also serves on Governor Inslee’s Orca Recovery Task Force. She will be discussing the status of the Southern Resident Killer Whales and the progress of the Governor’s Task Force and implementation plan. Year two of the Task Force ends in October and their final report is due in November. There is still time for public comment on their final recommendations, join us to learn more.


Also, mark your calendars for the following upcoming speaker series events:

Saturday October 19, 2019 “Tracking Humpback Whales in Oregon and Washington”

Saturday November 16, 2019 “Ocean Acidification and Hypoxia” Our annual silent auction will also be held during this meeting. Shop for ocean themed items at very reasonable prices. Proceeds help fund the Oregon Chapter’s student grant program.

Contact Joy Primrose, ACS Oregon Chapter President at or (541) 517-8754 for more information.
The American Cetacean Society protects whales, dolphins, porpoises, and their habitats. The non-profit organization was founded in 1967 and is headquartered in San Pedro, CA. Information on the ACS can be found on the website:

You can also find us on Facebook now at American Cetacean Society-Oregon Chapter

Update from Rep. Kurt Schrader

From U.S. Rep. Kurt Schrader

As the summer season comes to end, I headed back to Washington this week for legislative work after a great recess back home in Oregon. Throughout the summer, I had the opportunity to tour businesses across the Fifth District of Oregon and meet with our great constituents. Some highlights from my summer are below:

I visited the Port of Portland which currently ships over 11 million tons of cargo a year. Soon it will be even more with the addition of Terminal 6, better connecting cargo ships to train and truck services for faster, easier transport.

Every year Lake Oswego Rotary Club partners with Lakewood Center for the Arts to put on their Lobster Feed, together raising over $150,000 for the arts and other local community projects. Thank you for inviting me to speak and the work you do in Lake Oswego!

I had a great day with U.S. Forest Service – Willamette National Forest talking with staff about the work they’re doing on management, recreation, and creating fire adapted landscapes. Thanks for supporting our communities and the forest lands that make this state unique.

The Mid-Willamette Veterans Stand Down provides vital resources to veterans and their families, ensuring that our Veterans can access community resources and receive the benefits they have earned. Thank you, Rosy Macias, Sovah (Serving Our Veterans At Home) and all of their partners, for bringing our community together year after year as you continue our fight to end Veteran homelessness.

The month of September is Suicide Awareness Month and I will be sharing stories on Twitter and Facebook of hope, resources for veterans and what Congress is doing to help. This week alone, I cosponsored four bills aimed at combating veterans suicide and a bill to bring more resources to organizations working to prevent teen suicide.

If you are in need of support call call 1-800-273-8255 for 24/7 for confidential assistance.



Coast Tree


Coast Tree


Coast Tree