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Local News

Next State Street Phase Starts Monday

The next phase of the State Street Urban Renewal Project will begin on Monday.  Excavation to extend underground utilities from Front and State Street east to the intersection of East 2nd and State will start Monday and take about a week.  Traffic on State Street through the work zone will be limited to one lane, with flaggers on hand.  Traffic delays of ten to 15 minutes are expected.

Fire Destroys Home In Columbia View Heights Area

Fire destroyed a modular home in the Columbia View Heights area of The Dalles on Monday afternoon.  Mid-Columbia Fire and Rescue Chief Bob Palmer says the fire at 422 Summit Ridge Drive occurred shortly after 12:30 p.m. Monday, and was 75 percent involved when crews arrived.  Palmer noted it was fortunate the fire did not spread in the hot conditions.  He said the owner had cut the grass just days earlier, and that helped prevent the fire from spreading.  The home was unoccupied at the time of the fire, with the owner and a contractor doing renovations.  Palmer says the cause of the fire is under investigation.

HR Council Approves IGA With Port

Hood River City Councilors approved an intergovernmental agreement with the Port of Hood River to allow the City to build a new pipe on Port land to put treated effluent from the municipal wastewater treatment plant farther into the Columbia River in exchange for the City helping to do some path work.  City Manager Steve Wheeler says a pedestrian path will be built on top of where the pipe is installed at the end of the Hook.  The pipe is being moved to put treated effluent farther into the Columbia River into a better mixing zone as a result of a the creation of the sandbar at the mouth of the Hood River a few years ago.  In other City business, the Council tabbed Victor Pavlenko to serve on the municipal planning commission.

TD Council To Wait And See On Gas Tax

By a three-to-two vote, The Dalles City Council voted to wait and see what Wasco County decides to do with its proposed road district before placing a three-cent a gallon municipal gas tax increase on the November ballot.  Wasco County Commissioners will hold two more hearings on the road district proposal in early August before deciding whether to put it on the ballot in areas other than The Dalles.  That had Councilors wondering if they should wait to see what happens, and if revisiting a combined road district might be a better course of action.  Councilor Dan Spatz noted both the City and the County are in a bind due to the loss of federal timber dollars, with a County road district creating property tax compression issues while a City gas tax doesn’t benefit the County.  The City Council has scheduled a special meeting for August 14 to discuss the topic, and they could move to put the gas tax on the ballot at that time.

Urban Renewal Approves Funds For Pool Project

The Dalles City Council, acting in its role as the Columbia Gateway Urban Renewal Agency board, voted unanimously to provide $220-thousand dollars to the Northern Wasco County Parks and Recreation District to fund some elements of the Thompson Park swimming pool project.  The money will pay for elements including a slide, climbing wall, shade, and landscaping as costs have gone beyond what was originally anticipated in a bond measure approved by voters last year.  Mayor Steve Lawrence expressed concern that providing the funds depletes available funds urban renewal would have for other requests, but also voted to approve the move.  City Manager Nolan Young says by using short-term borrowing or the normal ebb and flow of other urban renewal projects, they should have the money replenished by spring.  Parks and Rec district representatives said the project is on track to have the pool open by the 2015 season.

Carrico Receives The Dalles Police Medal Of Valor

The Dalles Police Department Detective Jaime Carrico received the department’s Medal of Valor at Monday night’s City Council meeting.  Police Chief Jay Waterbury made the presentation.  Carrico was investigating the rape of a 13-year-old girl in October of last year, and learned the suspect had fled to Wishram.  With Klickitat County Sheriff’s officers, Carrico went to a neighborhood in Wishram where the suspect was believed to be, and pursued him on foot when he fled out the back door of a house.  After the foot chase the suspect fired a gun and wounded Carrico, who returned fire and fatally shot the suspect.  Waterbury noted Carrico assisted in his own care, and said his actions showed Carrico’s dedication to duty and public safety along with his tenacity.

Accident Injures Motorcyclist

A 57-year-old man was seriously injured in an accident involving a motorcycle and a bus on Saturday in the west end of The Dalles on Highway 30.  According to the Oregon State Police, Larry Dew was eastbound on Highway 30 near Division Street when the motorcycle collided into the front of a bus driven by 55-year-old Patrick Preston of The Dalles.  The bus was turning left from Highway 30 into a gas station/convenience store lot when the collision occurred.  Dew was seriously injured and transported by LifeFlight to Legacy Emanuel Medical Center in Portland where he was listed is in critical condition.   His motorcycle is registered in Colorado but he reportedly may be currently living in Wisconsin.   He was wearing a protective helmet.   Preston was not injured.   The bus belongs to Oregon Child Development Coalition and had no passengers.   OSP troopers from The Dalles Area Command office are continuing the investigation.   No citations have been issued at this time.  The accident occurred at about 7:15 a.m. Saturday.

Sewer Pipe Extension Planned

The City of Hood River will soon be progressing on a project to put its treated effulent farther into the Columbia River.  City Manager Steve Wheeler says when glacial outfall created the sandbar at the mouth of the Hood River several years ago. it changed what is known as the “mixing zone” and put it farther out in the Columbia.  The current location where the pipe comes out is near the Western Power Products building, but that has become more stagnant since the sandbar was created.  During normal operations the material coming out of the pipe is fairly clean, but the concern would be if there were some kind of malfunction that would cause untreated sewage to be dispensed.  The new ending of the pipe will be between Wells Island and the Hook.  Work should commence later this year, once a low interest loan is secured from the state.

 

Simulcast Next Big Step For Klickitat Emergency Communications

With dispatchers having moved into the new Klickitat County Emergency Operations Center in Goldendale a little more than a month ago, the next big step will be a simulcasting system that will allow communication by emergency radio without changing repeater channels.  Ed Powell of Klickitat County Emergency Management says it will allow for more seamless communications from one end of the County to the other.  Powell says he does not have a specific date on when the simulcast system will begin, but he hopes it happens sometime in August.

Write-In Candidate To Run Against Johnson

A Yakima attorney who ran against Washington 14th District Representative Norm Johnson as a Democrat four years ago is now making a write-in bid against him as a conservative Republican in next week’s primary.  53-year-old Michael “Scott” Brumback claims Johnson and other “establishment” Republicans no longer see themselves as public servants, and he is upset that Johnson and Senator Curtis King endorsed Gina McCabe in the other 14th District  House race instead of Adam Yoest.  Brumback told the Yakima Herald-Republic he ran as a Democrat in 2010 because he identifies with blue collar workers in that party’s labor base, but his socially conservative politics led Democratic leaders to refuse to endorse his candidacy.  To get on the general election ballot, Brumback must receive at least one percent of the vote and finish in the top two.  Johnson was previously unopposed in seeking a fourth term.

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