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Inmates battle forest fire

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 23rd, 2016
DEPOE BAY -- Convict firefighters, veterans of some of the most desperate forest fires in Oregon, deployed Tuesday morning, Aug. 23, in order to save this city of 1,600 residents from a fast-growing blaze two miles east of town.
The "Drag Strip Fire" started Monday, Aug. 22, on private timberland. It grew quickly, fed by 25 mph winds and
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Albacore surpass salmon

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 23rd, 2016
NEWPORT -- Albacore tuna and chinook salmon, two of Oregon most prized and lucrative commercial fisheries, have had markedly different outcomes entering the last week of August.
This year's Oregon albacore tuna haul is comparable to 2015's landings and value, but California's lengthy drought has turned the salmon fishery into a disaster.
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Toledo gets new leader

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 23rd, 2016
TOLEDO -- The top spot at Toledo City Hall won't sit vacant when current City Manager Jay Baughman leaves his post Friday, Aug. 26.
The city council selected Craig Martin -- manager of Sweet Home, Ore., for nearly 20 years -- to step into Baughman's seat on a temporary basis while the council hunts for a permanent candidate.
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Newport reflects on 50th Sister City anniversary

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 23rd, 2016
NEWPORT -- City officials and residents recently reflected on a friendship that has lasted half a century and more than 4,200 miles of distance.
The 50th anniversary celebration of Sister Cities Newport, Ore., and Mombetsu, Japan has come to a close, but officials plan to keep the relationship strong in years to come.
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Man dies in single-vehicle crash on Bear Creek Road

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 23rd, 2016
OTIS -- Police are investigating the death of a Kernville man who was found deceased in his vehicle last week.
A man discovered a Ford Ranger at the bottom of an embankment near Milepost 2 on Bear Creek Road while walking down his driveway on Thursday, Aug. 18.
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English learners thriving despite area challenges

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 23rd, 2016
LINCOLN COUNTY -- Non-native English speakers in the Lincoln County School District face many of the same challenges shared by their English-speaking peers, on top of the gargantuan task of learning a new language.
But in many regards, the English Language Learners (ELL) are statistically better off than many other LCSD students, according to a recent report compiling district data
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Council takes no action against Mayor Williams

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 23rd, 2016
LINCOLN CITY -- The city council on Monday, Aug. 22, emerged from an hourlong, closed-door hearing but took no disciplinary action against Mayor Don Williams, the main figure in a 12-month city investigation into allegations he broke city laws and council rules.
The city council launched the investigation in August 2015, at the behest of City Attorney Richard Appicello, who
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Report: pot tax revenue jumps on stronger sales

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 23rd, 2016
SALEM -- Taxes collected from marijuana sales in July were 44 percent higher than 2016's monthly average so far, according to the most recent report from the Oregon Department of Revenue.
The report, which was released Aug. 22, states that Oregon has collected a total of $25.5 million in taxes as of July 31.
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Toledo dog park named after late city councilor

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 23rd, 2016
TOLEDO -- The new Toledo dog park gained an official moniker, named after the recently deceased city councilor most instrumental in its creation.
The council unanimously voted to christen the Julie Rockwell Memorial Dog Park. Their decision was bolstered by the support of several of Rockwell's friends who showed up to the Aug. 17 meeting.
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U.S. Coast Guard pulls man from frigid water near pier

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 23rd, 2016
SOUTH BEACH -- U.S. Coast Guard personnel from Station Yaquina Bay were conducting safety checks when they heard a cry for help on Saturday, Aug. 20.
A mariner had lost his balance and fallen overboard. He was clinging to the side of a small boat.
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Drug testing rule reworked

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 23rd, 2016
LINCOLN COUNTY -- The Lincoln County School District will soon loosen its drug testing rules, after finding that the broad nature of its current policies open the district up to lawsuits.
The questionable rule, approved by the board in June 2016 as part of its policy update overhaul, called for blanket medical and drug testing for all new employees.
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Jobless figures shrink

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 23rd, 2016
LINCOLN COUNTY -- The unemployment rate in Lincoln County remained below 6 percent for the seventh-straight month despite strong growth in the civilian labor force, which reached its highest total of the year.
The jobless rate in the coastal region dropped to 5.9 percent in July from 6.9 percent in July 2015, the Oregon Employment Department said in a report
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Nervous residents watch forest fire

Modified: Tuesday, Aug 23rd, 2016
DEPOE BAY -- A yellowish glow from a fast-growing forest fire lit up the eastern horizon Monday night, Aug. 22, as townspeople gathered their belongings and prayed for relief.
"I've got my bug-out bag and our animals and we're ready to get out of here," declared Depoe Bay resident Ron Beard, whose sedan contained the wife, essential supplies and a
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City of Newport OKs tax break

Modified: Monday, Aug 22nd, 2016
NEWPORT -- The Newport City Council unanimously approved several strategies this week that will address the city's decades-long shortage of workforce and affordable housing units.
The foundation of the 10-point plan is to establish a multiple-unit tax exemption program that will lead to the construction of multiple, multifamily rental units in Newport.
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Siletz tribe molds new generation of Native pride

Modified: Saturday, Aug 20th, 2016
LINCOLN CITY -- In the long history of the Siletz Indians, the treaty struck by town elders and tribal leaders nearly 20 years ago has been unusual: unlike many others, the agreement has not been broken.
"We have a great relationship with Lincoln City," said Delores Pigsley, chairman of the Confederated Tribes of the Siletz Indians. "It's been good working
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Special education pilot program draws to a close

Modified: Friday, Aug 19th, 2016
LINCOLN CITY -- Ten special education students in the Lincoln County School District gained a very specific set of skills over the summer.
Wrapping up the pilot year of the Summer Work Experience Education and Training Program, or S.W.E.E.T., the students worked in different roles with employers in various fields, from retail to hospitality to marine science education.
But
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Huge challenge

Modified: Friday, Aug 19th, 2016
NEWPORT -- A short list of corrections deputies and a lone counselor are dealing with a surge of prisoners in Lincoln County Jail bedeviled by psychotic demons and acute depression.
The growing mix of inmates with mental illnesses -- now estimated to be one out of every three prisoners -- has placed unexpected financial, emotional and physical strains on
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OCCC names new board leaders for upcoming academic year

Modified: Friday, Aug 19th, 2016
WALDPORT -- The Oregon Coast Community College Board of Education elected a new chair and vice-chair to lead the decision-making body for the upcoming academic year.
Debbie Kilduff will replace Chris Chandler as chair, and Nancy Osterlund will replace will replace Cliff Ryer as vice-chair, the board decided in a meeting at its South County Center on Aug. 10.
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Home sales drop in July

Posted: Thursday, Aug 18th, 2016
LINCOLN COUNTY -- A drawn-out appraisal process caught up with the residential real estate market last month, in turn sending sales spiraling lower in the period.
The process, which can take several months in some cases, put a damper on the housing market at a time when sales are typically among the highest in an annual period.
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Methamphetamine charge levied against alleged thief

Posted: Thursday, Aug 18th, 2016
SEAL ROCK -- A Waldport man is facing theft and drug charges, after a car crash and alleged theft led law enforcement officers to search his home.
David Wayne Miller faces charges of possession of methamphetamine, a Class C felony, and theft in the second degree, a Class A misdemeanor.
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Toledo council approves two projects

Posted: Thursday, Aug 18th, 2016
TOLEDO -- The Toledo City Council awarded bids for two major updates to its infrastructure, green-lighting projects that will cost the city a total of about $610,400 in the coming months.
City hall will gain a new roof, and many of the city's cracked and crumbling streets will be repaved in the second phase of a road improvement venture. Both
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Crab pots make woman crabby

Posted: Thursday, Aug 18th, 2016
GLENEDEN BEACH -- A weekend squabble over crab pots escalated into an altercation involving felony assault charges, as a Gleneden woman allegedly aimed a van at multiple people.
Tina Louise Ruff faces charges of assault in the third degree, assault in the fourth degree, recklessly endangering another person, criminal mischief in the second degree, and two charges of menacing.
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Man jailed after punching officer

Posted: Thursday, Aug 18th, 2016
LINCOLN CITY -- A Lincoln City man faces multiple charges after allegedly punching a police officer while resisting arrest at his apartment on Southeast 19th Street.
Seiji Marshall Button, of Lincoln City, faces charges of assaulting a public safety officer and escape in the second degree, both Class C felonies, and resisting arrest, a Class A misdemeanor.
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Colleges to study ShakeAlert tech

Posted: Thursday, Aug 18th, 2016
Six universities were awarded approximately $3.7 million in grants to assist with the advancement of ShakeAlert, an early warning earthquake system on the West Coast that has been in development for 10 years.
The U.S. Geological Survey grants were announced Tuesday, Aug. 16, in a joint statement from Sens. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.). The grant recipients were
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Lead data rounds out district action plan

Modified: Thursday, Aug 18th, 2016
LINCOLN COUNTY -- The water in Lincoln City's schools is the safest in the Lincoln County School District, according to the most recent lead testing results.
Of the 312 tested sinks and water fountains at Oceanlake Elementary, Taft Elementary and Taft High, four sites tested above the Oregon Health Authority's action limit of 0.020 milligrams of lead per liter of
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Mountain of dirt

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 16th, 2016
NEWPORT -- Blasting hasn't begun yet, but more than 4,000 cubic yards per day of mountain dirt will be removed from Highway 20's West End Curve project during the next two months.
Nightly closures are now occurring in the area from 7:30 p.m. to 5:30 a.m. Sunday through Thursday, with the road open Friday and Saturday -- though Saturday night
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Landowners air concerns over Highway 101 project

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 16th, 2016
YACHATS -- The Highway 101 improvement project is a done deal, but Oregon Department of Transportation officials and engineers have agreed to continue working with property owners who would be affected by it before construction starts.
Those owners vented their frustrations during an informational meeting on Wednesday, Aug. 10.
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Tests show student success divided along city boundaries

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 16th, 2016
NEWPORT -- Preliminary scores for the statewide Smarter Balanced tests in the 2015-16 academic year have been released, revealing a district starkly divided along geographic lines.
Lincoln County School District Superintendent Steve Boynton released overall information about the test scores at the school board meeting on Wednesday, Aug. 10, although he was limited in his ability to disclose specific scores.
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Authorities still searching for cause of deadly blaze

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 16th, 2016
NEWPORT -- It will be at least a couple of weeks before information is released regarding the cause of the Aug. 5 early-morning fire that destroyed the Newport City Center Motel.
Four people died in the fire and four others were injured, with one hospitalized at the Legacy Emanuel Burn Center in Portland.
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Showdown looming over probe of Mayor Williams

Modified: Tuesday, Aug 16th, 2016
LINCOLN CITY -- An ominous showdown between the mayor and four members of the city council, who authorized an 11-month investigation into his alleged misdeeds, loomed Monday, Aug. 15, during a special session of the city council.
It marked the first time the council has openly addressed the long-running city investigation, which continued after Mayor Don Williams was exonerated in
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U.S. Coast Guard handles pair of long-distance tows

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 16th, 2016
NEWPORT -- A mechanical failure on a commercial fishing vessel led to an epic tow back to port last weekend by a specially designed motor lifeboat from U.S. Coast Guard Station Yaquina Bay.
The adventure started about 9 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 13, when the crew of the F/V Kay Ann called for assistance roughly 75 miles offshore because of a
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Where nature meets industry

Modified: Tuesday, Aug 16th, 2016
TOLEDO -- There's a pump along the Siletz River that feeds into a line owned by the city of Toledo. That line runs adjacent to the Olalla Reservoir. Built into that line is a valve. Flip the valve, and untreated water from the Siletz River flows directly into the main water supply for the Georgia-Pacific paper mill.
The arrangement is
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Fire station remodeling job begins in Depoe Bay

Modified: Tuesday, Aug 16th, 2016
DEPOE BAY -- A $2.8 million remodeling job is underway at Station 2300, the time-honored headquarters of the Depoe Bay Fire District that was shuttered to the public 10 years ago over Americans with Disabilities Act shortfalls.
Fire Chief Josh Williams reported that work will be completed on the 21,000-square-foot building in February 2017. According to the building permit filed
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New leaders seated in school district

Modified: Tuesday, Aug 16th, 2016
NEWPORT -- The Lincoln County School District Board of Directors elected a new chair and vice-chair for the upcoming academic year.
Ron Beck will replace Liz Martin as chairperson, and Amanda Remund will replace Karen Bondley as vice-chairperson, the board unanimously voted at its meeting on Wednesday, Aug. 10, the first of the 2016-17 school year.
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New restrictions possible for black sea bass

Modified: Monday, Aug 15th, 2016
SOUTH BEACH -- When you absolutely, positively have to catch fish, the scrappy black sea bass has always been the go-to trophy of choice.
Hard fighting, tasty and abundant, Sebastes melanops has been called the "bread and butter" rockfish of the $8.2 million Oregon coast recreational fishing industry.
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Complicated bridge project

Modified: Friday, Aug 12th, 2016
NEWPORT -- In order for three families in east Lincoln County to retain access to their residences, the county plans to construct a new bridge across the Yaquina River sometime next summer.
It sounds simple, but the Trapp Creek Bridge project is complicated by the fact it involves creation of a temporary county road that will cross the west end
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Key part of Head to Bay Trail moving forward

Modified: Friday, Aug 12th, 2016
LINCOLN CITY -- Major public works projects moved forward this week as city officials settled on a builder for a key segment of the Head to Bay Trail, then tapped experts to solve licensing and storage problems at the wastewater treatment plant.
Public Works Director Lila Bradley hailed the bidding process that resulted in a lower than expected price for
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Sleepy, state-owned airport lures carefree pilots

Modified: Friday, Aug 12th, 2016
GLENEDEN BEACH -- There are seldom delays at the sleepy, 80-acre state airport located off the third hole of Salishan golf course, but experienced flyers pack their sleeping bags and walking shoes, anyway.
"They warned me, but it was just so beautiful yesterday I wouldn't believe them," said Kevin Lane, a 61-year-old Portland pilot who was socked in after landing
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Siletz man accused of sexually abusing children

Posted: Thursday, Aug 11th, 2016
NEWPORT -- A Siletz man accused of inappropriately touching young girls multiple times over a six-month period will face a jury of 12 in September.
Lincoln County Circuit Court Judge Thomas Branford set David F. Pearson's trial for Sept. 13 during a hearing on Monday, Aug. 8.
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Several tasty public events planned

Posted: Thursday, Aug 11th, 2016
NEWPORT -- With a nod to the thousands of Lincoln County residents who enjoy growing their own food, the county's Board of Commissioners have proclaimed Aug. 14-20 as Master Gardener Week.
Beginning Sunday, Oregon State University's county extension service will offer nine garden events at several county sites, concluding with events scheduled for Friday, Aug. 19, and Saturday, Aug. 20,
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'Unlawful transfer' law adopted

Posted: Thursday, Aug 11th, 2016
LINCOLN CITY -- The city council on Monday, Aug. 8, eliminated its ban on "begging," striking the term from its laws that many speakers found offensive during recent hearings on the issue of panhandling.
Instead, the council adopted an "unlawful transfer" law that prohibits a driver or passenger from passing "any item" to a pedestrian in a street right-of-way, including
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Troubles mount for Republican

Posted: Thursday, Aug 11th, 2016
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump ignited his latest political firestorm this week with remarks that some folks said suggested violence toward Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.
"Hillary wants to abolish -- essentially abolish -- the 2nd Amendment. By the way, and if she gets to pick, if she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the
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