A resolution co-sponsored by area State Senators Chuck Thomsen and Ted Ferrioli to recognize Sunday as Japanese American Internment Remembrance Day. February 19 will be the 75th anniversary of President Franklin D. Roosevelt signing the executive order that led to Japanese Americans being placed in internment camps in World War II. Thomsen said the resolution held special significance to him as a Hood River County resident, with the County’s large number of citizens of Japanese heritage. The resolution passed the Senate unanimously.
The Hood River County School District reported a significant increase in absenteeism Thursday as “Day Without Immigrants” protests took place nationally. In a written statement District Superintendent Dan Goldman said 735 students were not in attendance on Thursday, adding that was an increase of 400 percent from normal. It represents just under 18 percent of the total enrollment in Hood River County schools. In North Wasco County School District 21, Superintendent Candy Armstrong said about 13 percent of students were absent, compared to nine-point-two percent the day before and six-point-five percent on the 14th. Armstrong added given illness and other excused absence reasons, it would be difficult to say how much impact the protest had on attendance. White Salmon Valley School District Superintendent Jerry Lewis did not have exact figures, but did confirm his district experienced more absenteeism that usual.
With uncertainty surrounding Oregon’s K-12 education budget again during the current legislative session, the Hood River County School District enters its fiscal preparations for the 2017-18 academic year facing the potential of cuts. Hood River County School District Superintendent Dan Goldman says they are using the proposed funding level in Governor Kate Brown’s budget, but that would involve using reserves they’ve built up over recent years, which would allow them to maintain where they are at with minimal cuts. But he adds that would create a funding cliff leading to larger cuts two years from now if the funding picture does not brighten. Goldman does believe there is opportunity for people in Oregon to have input to move the funding level higher than what the Governor has proposed.
There will be single lane closures on the Port of Hood River Interstate Bridge on Friday from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. Port crews will be on the bridge to make repairs to an overhead portion of the truss system that has sustained damage from an impact by a commercial vehicle. Flaggers will direct traffic. Bridge users should expect up to 15 minute delays during that time.
The Oregon Department of Transportation is instating a temporary 35 mile per hour speed limit on The Dalles Bridge to aid the efforts of maintenance crews trying to make pothole repairs. The temporary speed limit will remain in place as pothole work continues, likely until the latter part of March or early April, when weather conditions permit more permanent repairs to be completed. Sign crews will also be installing “rough road” signs to alert motorists to the surface conditions on the bridge, until those more permanent pothole repairs are completed.
Southwest Washington Class 1A Boys Basketball Tournament
LaCenter 70, Stevenson 50: The Wildcats jumped out to a big first quarter lead, and left the Bulldogs chasing for the rest of the game. Avery Sater scored 25 points and Jake Wise 21 to top LaCenter, while Austin Brannan led Stevenson with 17 in their final game of the season.
All three of the maintenance and operations levies for area school districts on the Tuesday night ballot in Washington were passing by substantial margins. Voters in the White Salmon Valley School District were passing their M and O by a two-to-one margin, 1,043 in favor to 543 against. In the Lyle School District 62 percent were in favor, 467 to 283. And in the Trout Lake School District there is a 71 percent passage rate, 229 to 95. Ballots only had to be postmarked by Tuesday, so ballots will continue to come in for a few days. In the Home Valley Water District, a maintenance and capital improvements levy was being approved 41 to 19.
Google and The Dalles-Wasco County Library unveiled a program that will allow library patrons to check out mobile Wi-Fi hotspots similar to the way they would check out a book. A grant from Google allowed the library to acquire 50 hotspots in the pilot program. Google’s Darcy Nothnagle says the Wi-Fi checkout program is intended to help bridge a “digital divide,” noting household income is an indicator of whether or not a person has consistent Internet access. Hotspots can be checked out for three-week periods, and laptop computers will also be available.
The Hood River County School District is still looking at ways to make up all the classroom days lost due to ice and snow this winter. The district had already developed plans to make up eight days by eliminating the Monday late starts that were used for curriculum collaboration issues, making two grading and conference compensation days full school days, and adding four days to the end of the school year. But District Superintendent Dan Goldman says two more snow days last week leaves the district looking at more options, including adding additional instructional minutes to each school day. As an example, Goldman said Hood River Valley High School could add a minute to two minutes to each class period, and by the end of the school year that would make up two days. Goldman noted the district has to work with their bargaining units to finalize make up plans.
Hermiston 61, The Dalles 57: Chance Flores scored 22 points and Xavier Rambo 16 as the Bulldogs hung on to defeat the Riverhawks. Dakota Murr had a double-double to lead The Dalles with 19 points and 11 rebounds.
Pendleton 65, Hood River Valley 48
Pendleton 53, Hood River Valley 37: Kalan McGlothan scored 12 of her 20 points in the first quarter to lead the Buckaroos. Lauren Orr led Hood River with 13 points.
Hermiston 54, The Dalles 46
Southwest Washington Class 1A Girls Basketball Tournament
Seton Catholic 48, Stevenson 36