The City of Hood River is getting ready to establish new safe routes to school on May Street between 30th and 17th Streets. City Manager Steve Wheeler says work is expected to begin this summer on bike lanes and sidewalks. The key intersection is at 17th and May, which Wheeler says will be redesigned to be more intuitive and safer. City Councilors will get a complete look at the plans at their meeting Monday evening at 6 p.m. in Hood River City Hall.
Klickitat County is getting ready to finalize contracts to construct the new flex space building and a hangar at the Columbia Gorge Regional Airport in Dallesport. County Commissioner David Sauter says ground breaking on the flex building should take place very soon, and he notes it’s important to get that started and get a structure located in the industrial park surrounding the airport, especially with the Port of The Dalles wrapping up work on its North Chenoweth property. Sauter added getting a building constructed will provide some tangible evidence to prospective tenants that the Dallesport site is ready for businesses to locate there.
The Hood River County School District has selected Kim Yasui to be the new principal at Mid-Valley Elementary School. Yasui will replace Dennis McCauley, who is retiring at the end of the school year. Yasui is a native of the area and graduated from Hood River Valley High School. She currently is an instructional coach and coordinator of the district’s Advancement Via Individual Determination program. In other hirings, Don Benefield has been selected as the next transportation supervisor for the Hood River school district, and Tom Ames has been tabbed to be the next athletic director at Hood River Valley High School.
Hood River Valley 14, LaSalle 5: The Eagles scored eight runs in the first inning and cruised to their third consecutive win to start the season. Kellen Duffy homered twice and drove in four runs to lead HRV’s offensive attack.
Bend sweeps The Dalles 14-0 and 15-0.
Dufur sweeps Nyssa 16-6 and 8-2.
Dufur 13, Umatilla 3
Nyssa sweeps Sherman 20-6 and 14-13
Washougal 13, Columbia 4
Lyle-Wishram-Klickitat splits with Wishram, losing game one 17-5 but winning the nightcap 9-5.
The Dalles sweeps Bend 7-1 and 13-2: Morgan Goslin hit home runs in both games, while Maddy Bradford pitched a two-hitter in the opener.
Hood River Valley 9, West Anchorage 2
Royal sweeps Goldendale 17-5 and 13-3.
Westview 15, Hood River Valley 5
Washougal 5, Columbia 0
Oregon Senator Ron Wyden attached an amendment to the federal budget bill to renew the expired Secure Rural Schools program, extend the Payment in Lieu of Taxes program, and fully fund for the Land and Water Conservation Fund. Wyden and Idaho Senator Mike Crapo introduced a bill to extend the county payments program last month. Wyden told the Senate Budget Committee said the Secure Rural Schools program is especially important, saying no matter how much timber can be harvested from federal lands, there will still be a need for the safety net. The amendment passed in the Senate Budget Committee on a bipartisan, 18 to 4 vote.
Hood River County Commissioners have approved a plan to develop a park at Punchbowl Falls, setting the stage to apply for grants to purchase the property around the falls. Administrator David Meriwether says the committee involved with drawing up the plans kept it simple with the goal of protecting what is there and maintain access to it. The plans include some trail work, restrooms, signage, and improved parking. The County will now be seeking $578,000 in Oregon State Parks grant funds to purchase the land from Western Rivers Conservancy. Meriwether noted the improvements would be done by volunteers and paid for by donations, and require minimal maintenance.
North Central Public Health District is advising parents of University of Oregon students who are coming home for spring break that there is no supply of Meningitis B vaccine at clinics or pharmacies in Wasco, Sherman, or Gilliam counties. According to the district, if a U of O student is returning and was not vaccinated while at the school, they recommend calling ahead to a local pharmacy. If the vaccine is not in stock, it can be ordered within a day or so. Five U of O freshmen have contracted type B meningococcal disease since mid-January, resulting in one death. The Oregon Health Authority has recommended vaccination as the best way to eradicate the illness, and students were encouraged to obtain vaccination in Eugene.
Track and Field
The Dalles’ Katie Conklin won three events in the season opening Mullen-Leavitt Invitational at Sid White Field. Conklin won the girls’ 100 meter hurdles, high jump, and triple jump. There were two other multiple event winners in the meet involving a number of area schools, also in the girls’ portion of the competition. Dufur’s Taylor Darden won the shot put and discus, while Yasmin Hill of The Dalles won the long jump and pole vault.
Columbia finished third in both the boys and girls team standings in a meet at Woodland. Stacia Bell won the girls’ shot put and discus for the Bruins. The host Beavers won both team competitions.
Sandy 12, Hood River Valley 0
Hockinson sweeps Stevenson 12-0 and 17-6
Stevenson 6, Castle Rock 0
Hood River Valley 16, Central Catholic 8: Erin Mayer scored six goals as HRV evened its record at 1-1.
Wasco County Commissioners have told Chief Administrative Officer Tyler Stone to institute changes to financial processes found in an independent audit. The auditing firm of Pauly, Rogers, and Co. gave their report to Commissioners this week, noting material weaknesses in internal control for bank and tax deposit reconciliations and month-end closings. Commissioner Scott Hege says the report identified work that wasn’t being completed, noting issues related to policies, with the primary goal to ensure solid and reliable financial records. Hege noted auditors did not find any money missing from county accounts, but their report pointed out better practices were needed to ensure County Commissioners and department heads receive accurate and timely financial information for operations, decision making, and managing the budget.
Oregon State 52nd District Representative Mark Johnson says an e-mail campaign advocating for increased funding for K-12 education is the best grassroots efforts he has seen as a legislator. But whether it will result in change is an open question. The Ways and Means co-chairs budget number of seven-point-two-three-five billion dollars is not considered enough. Johnson says they need to get to at least seven-point-five billion to even tread water, and he is frustrated by a continued drop in K-12’s share of the state general fund budget dating back to the 2003-05 biennium. The Hood River Republican says the education budget is the top discussion point among legislators at this time.