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Columbia (Tri-Cities/Yakima/Pendleton) News Releases for Mon. Jun. 24 - 1:47 pm
Mon. 06/24/24
A Fountain of Creativity, A New Exhibition at the Oregon Historical Society, Honors the Legacy and Influence of Arlene Schnitzer on the History and Culture of Portland (Photo)
Oregon Historical Society - 06/24/24 12:27 PM
Arlene Schnitzer at the Fountain Gallery with a folded screen made by Jay Backstrand, March 17, 1964. OHS Research Library, no. 938.
Arlene Schnitzer at the Fountain Gallery with a folded screen made by Jay Backstrand, March 17, 1964. OHS Research Library, no. 938.

DOWNLOAD PRESS KIT: https://bit.ly/fountainofcreativity 


Portland, OR — Arlene Schnitzer was quoted as saying “a city without an art community has no soul.” A new exhibition opening at the Oregon Historical Society on June 28, A Fountain of Creativity: 20th Century Northwest Artists and the Legacy of Arlene Schnitzer, honors Schnitzer’s influence on the history of Portland. The exhibition includes a range of bold, evocative, and influential works created by Pacific Northwest artists from the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation — many of which will be on public display for the first time. 

Featuring notable artists such as Louis Bunce, Carl Morris, Hilda Morris, Mike Russo, and Mel Katz, this original installation, which will be debuted in two parts, reflects the enduring legacy of Arlene Schnitzer and the Fountain Gallery and the ways that her work has helped feed the soul of Portland and of arts and culture across the state.

During the late twentieth century, the arts community in Oregon was small, isolated, and offered few opportunities for artists to exhibit and sell their work. While the Portland community valued public engagement with arts and culture, establishing an art museum, symphony, and a public library, local artists were isolated from the wider national art community due to a lack of commercial gallery space to show and sell their work.

Decades later in 1961, Arlene Schnitzer, along with her mother Helen Director and friend Edna Brigham, started the Fountain Gallery. The commercial art gallery, named after its location near the Skidmore Fountain, became a hub for Pacific Northwest modern artists and helped raise the status of the Portland art scene.

“I’m happy that the Oregon Historical Society wanted to share my mother’s legacy with old friends and many new citizens,” said collector, philanthropist, and son of Arlene Schnitzer, Jordan D. Schnitzer. “Focusing on my late mother Arlene Schnitzer’s Fountain Gallery — the first contemporary art gallery in Portland — these artists’ voices, embodied in their art, inspire us, challenge us, and tell the story of contemporary art in our community.”

Jordan Schnitzer purchased his first work of art when he was 14 years old from the Fountain Gallery. It was through Arlene Schnitzer and the Fountain Gallery that his initial acquisition turned into a lifelong pursuit to collect, share, and promote the visual arts. Jordan Schnitzer is now recognized as one of the Top 200 Collectors globally (ArtNews). His collection, consisting of more than 22,000 works, functions as a living archive to preserve art for future generations and share it with the public through groundbreaking exhibitions, publications, and programs.

The first part of this two-part exhibition will debut on June 28, 2024, and will run through January 2, 2025. It will feature artworks from 1915 into the early 1960s and will provide cultural and historical context on the Pacific Northwest arts scene prior to the opening of the Fountain Gallery in 1961. The second part, on view from October 25, 2024, through May 4, 2025, will highlight many of the artists who worked closely with Arlene Schnitzer throughout the Fountain Gallery’s 25 years supporting the local arts scene.

“Art gives you a different perspective on history,” says OHS Curator of Exhibitions Megan Lallier-Barron, “People’s lived experiences at a point in time are captured and preserved in art and allow us a means for reflection and interpretation in the present.”

The Oregon Historical Society’s museum is open daily in downtown Portland, from 10am to 5pm Monday through Saturday and 12pm to 5pm on Sunday. Admission is free every day for youth 17 and under, OHS members, and residents of Multnomah County. Learn more and plan your visit at ohs.org/visit.

About the Oregon Historical Society

For 125 years, the Oregon Historical Society has served as the state’s collective memory, preserving a vast collection of objects, photographs, maps, manuscript materials, books, films, and oral histories. Our research library, museum, digital platforms, educational programming, and historical journal make Oregon’s history open and accessible to all.We exist because history is powerful, and because a history as deep and rich as Oregon’s cannot be contained within a single story or point of view. 


About the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation
Founded in 1997, the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation collection, one of the most notable in North America, functions as a living archive to preserve art for future generations and share it with the public through groundbreaking exhibitions, publications, and programs. Today, the Foundation has organized over 160 exhibitions and has loaned thousands of works to over 120 museums, dramatically improving access to art, especially in underserved communities. 

Attached Media Files: Arlene Schnitzer at the Fountain Gallery with a folded screen made by Jay Backstrand, March 17, 1964. OHS Research Library, no. 938. , Clayton Sumner (C.S.) Price (American (1874–1950)) Two Horses, n.d. Oil on board, 12 3/4 x 16 1/4 in. Collection of Jordan D. Schnitzer Image: Aaron Wessling Photography, Courtesy of the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation. , Gordon Gilkey (American (1912–2000)) As the Pearl Grows in Portland, edition 10/100, 1999 Woodcut, 12 x 17 in. Collection of the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation, from the Arlene and Harold Schnitzer Collection Image: Aaron Wessling Photography, Courtesy of the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation. , Hilda Morris (American (1911–1991)) Bantam Rooster, 1954 Sumi ink on paper, 19 3/4 x 14 1/2 in. Collection of the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation, from the Arlene and Harold Schnitzer Collection Image: Aaron Wessling Photography, Courtesy of the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation. , Louis Demott Bunce (American (1907–1983)) Sky Selector, edition AP, 1970 Serigraph, 26 x 20 in. Collection of the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation, from the Arlene and Harold Schnitzer Collection Image: Aaron Wessling Photography, Courtesy of the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation. , Louis Demott Bunce (American (1907–1983)) Near Humbug Mountain (Coast at Port Orford), 1934 Oil on linen, 14 x 15 1/2 in. Collection of the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation Image: Aaron Wessling Photography, Courtesy of the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation.

Fatal Crash - HWY 203 - Union County
Oregon State Police - 06/24/24 10:56 AM

Union County, Ore. 22 June 24- On Saturday, June 22, 2024 at 4:20 p.m., Oregon State Police responded to a single-vehicle crash on Hwy 203, near milepost 7, in Union County.

The preliminary investigation indicated Ford Explorer, operated by William Justin Curtiss (38) of Union, left it's lane of travel for unknown reasons, overcorrected across the roadway and struck a bridge abutment. The Ford rolled several times, ejecting the operator, before coming to rest along the shoulder of the highway.

The operator of the Ford (Curtiss) was pronounced deceased at the scene.

The highway was impacted for approximately two hours during the on-scene investigation. The cause of the crash is under investigation.

OSP was assisted by the Union County Sheriff's Office and ODOT.

# # #

About the Oregon State Police
Oregon State Police (OSP) is a multi-disciplined organization that is charged with protecting the people, wildlife, and natural resources in Oregon. OSP enforces traffic laws on the state’s roadways, investigates and solves crime, conducts postmortem examinations and forensic analysis, and provides background checks, and law enforcement data. The agency regulates gaming and enforces fish, wildlife, and natural resource laws. OSP is comprised of more than 1,400 staff members – including troopers, investigators, and professional staff – who provide a full range of policing and public safety services to Oregon and other law enforcement agencies throughout Oregon.

2024 Fireworks on Pilot Butte Limited Access to Pilot Butte 7/1 through 7/5
Bend Fire & Rescue - 06/24/24 8:12 AM

This year’s 4th of July Pilot Butte public fireworks display will commence at approximately 10pm on Tuesday, July 4th, 2024.  In preparation, the Oregon State Parks Department and Bend Fire & Rescue ask that the community observe the following restrictions to Pilot Butte State Park from July 1st through July 5th

  • The access road to the summit will be closed to all vehicle traffic. The gate closes at 10pm on June 30th as part of the normal park operations. It will remain closed until the afternoon of July 5th due to fireworks operations. 
  • All the trails and roadways will be accessible to pedestrians only starting 10:00 pm on June 30thWith the exception of the summit, which will be closed to all but authorized personnel and equipment. Please respect the barriers that will be placed across the road and pathways to prevent access to the summit. This is for everyone’s safety and security. 
  • Access to ALL trails and roadways (top to bottom) on Pilot Butte will be closed on July 4th at sun up through the afternoon of July 5th. No access will be permitted with security and law enforcement on site to enforce restrictions. This is for the safety of the set-up crews and visitors to the park. The area will reopen when the clean-up process has been completed. 
  • Signs/fences and security will be placed at the closure points on the Butte. Please respect the closed areas and do not attempt entry, for your own safety and the safety of those working to set up the fireworks. Visitors will NOT be allowed into the closed areas at any time.
  • The main parking area at the base of Pilot Butte, off Linnea Drive, will be open during the fireworks show. But we ask that you do not block any emergency access roads or public/private streets, as this can delay a response to an emergency.
  • Pilot Butte will re-open for all pedestrian visitors the afternoon of July 5th after all fireworks and equipment have been secured and removed from the site. 
  • Oregon State Parks and Bend Fire & Rescue remind everyone that pets are not permitted in the park during the show.  

The fireworks are presented each year as a gift to the community from Subaru of Bend and their partners. Thanks also to the local Scout troops that help clean up the fireworks each year after the show. A huge thank you to the local fire crews from the US Forest Service and Oregon Department of Forestry for assisting with the fire safety on the butte during the show. Without their support each year this show would not be possible.

For more information, please contact Oregon State Parks at (541) 388-6055 
or Bend Fire & Rescue at (541) 322-6386.

Sun. 06/23/24
Deer Ridge Correctional Institution reports in-custody death (Photo)
Oregon Dept. of Corrections - 06/23/24 1:08 PM
Steven D. Illman
Steven D. Illman

An Oregon Department of Corrections (DOC) adult in custody, Steven Dietrich Illmann, died June 22, 2024. Illmann was incarcerated at Deer Ridge Correctional Institution (DRCI) in Madras and passed away at a local hospital. As with all in-custody deaths, the Oregon State Police have been notified, and the medical examiner will determine cause of death.

Illmann entered DOC custody on June 16, 2022, from Lane County with an earliest release date of August 31, 2026. Illmann was 60 years old. Next of kin has been notified.  

DOC takes all in-custody deaths seriously. The agency is responsible for the care and custody of 14,500 individuals who are incarcerated in 14 institutions across the state. While crime information is public record, DOC elects to disclose only upon request out of respect for any family or victims.

Deer Ridge Correctional Institution (DRCI) is located four miles east of Madras in central Oregon. DRCI is a multi-custody prison that currently houses 947 minimum-custody incarcerated adults. DRCI provides a range of correctional programs and services including education and trades programs, mental health treatment, cognitive and parenting programs, and institution work crews. Construction began in October 2005 with the first minimum-security adults in custody (AICs) arriving in September 2007. DRCI is the largest minimum-custody facility in the state.



Attached Media Files: Steven D. Illman

Fri. 06/21/24
Oregon State Fire Marshal urges Oregonians to keep firework use legal and safe
Oregon State Fire Marshal - 06/21/24 2:34 PM

SALEM, Ore. – With fireworks set to go on sale on Sunday, “Keep it legal, keep it safe” is the message from the Oregon State Fire Marshal. The 2024 fireworks retail sales season begins on June 23 and runs through July 6 in Oregon. The state fire marshal would like everyone to know which fireworks are legal to use, where fireworks can be used, and how to use them safely. 

“We ask Oregonians to be responsible if they plan to use fireworks as part of their celebrations,” Oregon State Fire Marshal Assistant Chief Deputy Mark Johnston said. “Every year, we see fires and injuries because of improper use of fireworks or illegal fireworks. Our message is simple: keep it legal and keep it safe.”  
To reduce the risk of starting a fire, some local governments in Oregon have firework sales or use restrictions in place. Oregonians are asked to check local regulations and follow them where they live or where they may be traveling to celebrate the Fourth of July. 

Consumer-legal fireworks can only be purchased from permitted fireworks retailers and stands. State regulations limit where those fireworks may be used, including public lands and parks. The possession and use of fireworks are prohibited in national parks and forests, on Bureau of Land Management lands, on U.S. Fish and Wildlife properties, on state beaches, in state parks, and in state campgrounds. Fireworks are also prohibited on many private lands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry. 

For those who purchase legal fireworks, fire officials encourage everyone to practice the four Bs of safe fireworks use: 

  • Be prepared before lighting fireworks: keep water available by using a garden hose or bucket. 
  • Be safe when lighting fireworks: keep children and pets away from fireworks. Never use fireworks near or on dry grass or vegetation. 
  • Be responsible after lighting fireworks: never relight a dud. Please wait 15 to 20 minutes, then soak spent fireworks in a bucket of water before disposal. 
  • Be aware: use only legal fireworks in legal places. 

Oregon law prohibits the possession, use, or sale of any firework that flies into the air, explodes, or travels more than 12 feet horizontally on the ground without a permit issued by the state fire marshal. Fireworks commonly called bottle rockets, Roman candles, and firecrackers are illegal in Oregon without a permit. Officials may seize illegal fireworks and charge offenders with a class B misdemeanor which could result in a fine of up to $2,500. Those who misuse fireworks or allow fireworks to cause damage are liable and may be required to pay fire suppression costs or other damages. Parents are also liable for fireworks damage caused by their children. 

The Oregon State Fire Marshal has resources about the sale and legal use of consumer fireworks, retail sale permits, and state rules for firework use and enforcement activities to its website

OHA Announces New Equity and Inclusion Leadership
Oregon Health Authority - 06/21/24 12:17 PM

June 21, 2024

Contact: Robb Cowie, 503-421-7684, obb.cowie@oha.oregon.gov">robb.cowie@oha.oregon.gov 

OHA Announces New Equity and Inclusion Leadership

(SALEM, Ore.) – Leann Johnson, director of Oregon Health Authority’s (OHA) Equity and Inclusion Division (E&I), has left her position after more than eight years heading the division. Alfonso Ramirez, who currently serves as Equity and Community Partnerships Manager in OHA’s Behavioral Health Division, will serve as interim director. 

Ramirez brings nearly 30 years of experience in the human services field as an educator, mental health clinician, program manager and equity leader with expertise in trauma-informed and culturally responsive practices, systems change and community engagement. He currently represents Oregon in the Center for Health Care Strategies national health equity change-makers leadership program.

OHA Director Sejal Hathi, MD, MBA, said, “The Equity and Inclusion Division is vital to OHA and the communities we serve. It's important for us to ensure that the Equity and Inclusion Division is not alone in the work to change our policies and programs, dismantle systemic racism and meet the needs of the communities most harmed by health inequities. A commitment to health equity lives in every corner of OHA, and the practice of equity is – and must be – everyone’s job.”

OHA’s Equity and Inclusion Division is responsible for working in partnership with priority populations, all OHA divisions — including Medicaid, the Oregon State Hospital, and the Public Health Division — and the statewide health delivery system to advance health equity and achieve OHA’s goal to eliminate health inequities by 2030. E&I staff administer the state’s traditional health worker program, health care interpreter program, Civil Rights complaint reviews, and support nine regional health equity coalitions (RHECs), as well as a range of health equity advisory committees.

The Equity and Inclusion Division has a budget of $52.7 million for the 2023-2025 biennium and 86 staff.

OHA will launch a national search for a permanent director for the Equity and Inclusion Division this summer.


Committee for Family Forestlands meets on June 26
Oregon Dept. of Forestry - 06/21/24 10:46 AM

SALEM, Ore. — The Committee for Family Forestlands will meet virtually on Wednesday, June 26 from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. To join virtually, please use the Zoom video conference information found on the agenda

The committee’s agenda includes:

  • Forest Resources Division update
  • Small Forestland Investment in Stream Habitat Program (SFISH) tax guidance
  • Stream crossing presentation
  • Oregon Forest Resources Institute (OFRI) guide overview
  • Board of Forestry update
  • CFF annual report

The meeting is open to the public to attend online via Zoom. Requests for an interpreter for the hearing impaired or other accommodations for persons with disabilities should be made at least 24 hours before the meeting by emailing estlands@odf.oregon.gov">committee.of.family.forestlands@odf.oregon.gov.

The 13-member committee researches policies that affect family forests, natural resources and forestry benefits. Based on its findings, the committee recommends actions to the Oregon Board of Forestry and the State Forester. View more information on the CFF webpage.

ODF sends 19 firefighters to New Mexico (Photo)
Oregon Dept. of Forestry - 06/21/24 10:00 AM

SALEM, Ore. – This week the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) filled an order to send 19 firefighters to New Mexico to assist in fighting numerous, out of control wildfires. Many of the firefighters arrived in the state today and the rest will arrive within the next day. The two-week rotation with our New Mexico partners will allow our firefighters to brush up on their skills before Oregon’s fire season hits its peak later this summer. 

The firefighters went to New Mexico under mutual assistance agreements between the states. When wildfire activity is low in Oregon, firefighters can be spared to help in places experiencing high levels of wildfire. So far in 2024, Oregon has deployed:

  • 48 firefighters to Texas
  • 14 firefighters to Alaska
  • Five firefighters to California
  • Two firefighters to Tennessee
  • One firefighter to Washington
  • One firefighter to Florida
  • One firefighter to New Mexico (this deployment is separate from the current one)

Oregon can and has called on those same states to send firefighters and equipment when wildfires here exceed local capacity.

“These agreements help bolster the complete and coordinated fire protection system across the continent and create a cache of reciprocal resources for all of us to call on when needed.” Chris Cline, ODF’s Fire Protection Division Chief, explained. 

So why does Oregon send resources to help other states? Through these mutual assistance agreements with other states, including Alaska, Hawaii and NW Canadian territories, we can share resources with one another, creating a larger, faster comprehensive fire management system.   

“We do our best to answer the call when it comes in from any of our wildland partners as we’ve been on the other side of the equation and we understand how difficult it can be to need help so desperately,” said Cline. “But know that we don’t share these resources without appropriate vetting. Before committing to any out-of-state deployment, we make sure that our own fire management system is still adequately staffed and ready to respond to fires here in Oregon. Serving Oregonians is our first and primary priority.”  

Attached Media Files: 2024-06/1072/173194/IMG_9395.jpg

Bend Police Department and Bend Fire & Rescue Remind Community of Fireworks Ban, How to Report
Bend Fire & Rescue - 06/21/24 9:17 AM

Summer is warming up, and with the July 4 holiday quickly approaching, the City of Bend Police Department and Bend Fire & Rescue wish to remind the community about the rules regarding fireworks use in Bend and the surrounding area.

Within Bend city limits, the use, sale and possession of fireworks is banned per City OrdinanceThis means that sales tents and in-store purchases of fireworks in Bend are not permitted, and fireworks purchased elsewhere cannot be brought to Bend and discharged. 

There are a few novelty items, or “non-fireworks,” that are legal to use in Bend such as smoke bombs, wire core sparklers, snakes and party poppers. 

Fireworks outside of city limits must be Oregon-legal. Fireworks that explode, eject balls of fire, fly into the air, or travel more than six feet along the ground are illegal within the state of Oregon.

Violations can result in criminal or civil penalties, including fines per offense. This could mean up to $750 for City ordinance violations, and according to the Oregon State Fire Marshal, as much as $2,500 for firework use violating state law. There could also be costs for damage, injury and services incurred because of noncompliance.

If you are in an area that permits fireworks, please remember to use them safely. 

  • Have a water source nearby in case of an accident or defective firework.
  • Only use fireworks on non-combustible surfaces like gravel or pavement.
  • Follow age restrictions. Only adults should light and use fireworks – never children.
  • Soak discharged fireworks in water before disposal.

If you want to report the use of fireworks in the city of Bend, you can do so by emailing eworks@bendoregon.gov">fireworks@bendoregon.gov. Reporting will not prompt a police or fire response but will allow us to collect data about illegal firework use throughout the city. If you see illegal use of fireworks that is creating an imminent danger to people or property, you should call 911. 

Independence Day is one of the busiest days of the year for first responders. The Bend Police Department will have additional patrol teams on hand to deal with the influx of calls, but we ask the Bend community to help our officers by following the local ban on fireworks, which will allow quicker responses to emergencies and avoid a flood of calls to Deschutes County 911 dispatch. 

Learn more at bendoregon.gov/fireworks.

Wapato Schools: Wapato Online Academy Enrollment Opens July 1
Wapato Sch. Dist. - 06/21/24 8:37 AM

Good morning,

Please see the attached release regarding the enrollment window opening for our Online Academy for the 2024-2025 school year.


Attached Media Files: Wapato Schools: Online Academy Enrollment Opening July 1

State Fire Marshal mobilizes two task forces to the Upper Applegate fire in Jackson County
Oregon State Fire Marshal - 06/21/24 8:31 AM

SALEM, Ore. – This morning, the Oregon State Fire Marshal mobilized two structural task forces to the Upper Applegate Fire in Jackson County. The task forces are from Lane and Polk counties and were mobilized through Immediate Response, a tool the state fire marshal uses to send firefighting resources outside of a conflagration. The structural task forces will support the Applegate Valley Fire District.   

According to the Oregon Department of Forestry, as of Friday morning, the Upper Applegate Fire was estimated to be 500 acres in size. The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office has Level 1 Be Ready evacuation notices in place for homes near the fire. You can find the latest evacuation map here and information about evacuations here. 

“Our priority is to proactively protect our communities from the threat of wildfires. We're sending resources to boost capacity and support the Applegate Valley Fire District until the fire is contained,” said Oregon State Fire Marshal Mariana Ruiz-Temple. “With warm, dry weather in the forecast, the risk of wildfires is heightened across Oregon. We urge everyone to help our firefighters by taking preventive measures to avoid sparking a wildfire this summer and follow all burning restrictions.” 

For information about the fire, please follow the Oregon Department of Forestry – Southwest District. Learn how to be #WildfireAware this summer by following these wildfire prevention tips. 

About Immediate Response 

Immediate Response is made possible through the OSFM’s Response Ready Oregon initiative, created through Oregon’s wildfire omnibus bill, Senate Bill 762, signed into law in 2021.  

LEARN MORE: Response Ready Oregon 

Thu. 06/20/24
Memorial ceremony honors Oregon's fallen firefighters
Ore. Dept. of Public Safety Standards and Training - 06/20/24 5:35 PM

June 20, 2024


SALEM, Ore. — A ceremony held Thursday, June 20 in Salem commemorated Oregon fire service members who have died in the line of duty. Hundreds gathered for the Oregon Fallen Fire Fighters Memorial Ceremony to honor the brave individuals who gave their lives to protect communities and natural resources around the state.

The annual event is held at the Oregon Public Safety Academy, site of the Oregon Fire Fighters Memorial. The memorial commemorates 179 fire service members who have made the ultimate sacrifice since 1881, including career, volunteer, wildland and structural fire fighters. 

Thursday’s ceremony remembered three fallen fire service members whose names were recently added to the memorial: Mo Stadeli of Salem Fire Department, and Brandon W. Norbury and Brian Edward Flowers of Gresham Fire and Emergency Services. 

Mo Stadeli served as a professional firefighter with the Salem Fire Department for more than twenty-five years. In 2018, he was diagnosed with tonsillar cancer, and he passed away on February 24, 2019.

On February 3, 2023, after participating in routine hose evolution training, Brandon W. Norbury of Gresham Fire and Emergency Services suffered a cardiac arrest and collapsed on the training ground. Despite life-saving efforts of other fire department members, Norbury was pronounced dead after being rushed to the hospital.

After a fifteen-year career, Gresham Fire and Emergency Services Firefighter Brian Edward Flowers passed away on November 19, 2023, after a monthslong battle with Occupational Acute Myeloid Leukemia.

In his keynote speech, Clackamas Fire District #1 Chief Nick Browne praised the fallen firefighters’ commitment to public service and the sacrifices they made to leave the world a better place.

“In the course of their duties, these men saved countless lives, they protected property, and they provided a sense of security and hope to countless individuals,” Chief Browne said. 

He continued, “Every name on that wall, every person on that wall reflected those same traits. When we reflect on their sacrifice, we see that bright beacon of light that shines from their examples through the darkness of grief, illuminating the path of service, courage and compassion that they walked every single day.” 

The ceremony is a significant event that the Department of Public Safety Standards and Training (DPSST) hosts annually in partnership with the Oregon Fire Service Honor Guard. For more information on the Oregon Fallen Fire Fighters Memorial, including the names of the fallen, history of the memorial, and the Oregon Fire Service Honor Guard’s involvement, please visit DPSST’s Oregon Fallen Fire Fighters Memorial website at https://www.oregon.gov/dpsst/Memorials/Firefighters/Pages/default.aspx.



The mission of the Department of Public Safety Standards and Training (DPSST) is to pursue excellence in training and accountability for public safety professionals. DPSST certifies and licenses police, corrections, and parole and probation officers, as well as regulatory specialists, emergency telecommunicators and medical dispatchers, criminal justice instructors, private security providers, private investigators, fire service professionals, and polygraph examiners in the state of Oregon.  DPSST works with public and private safety agencies around the state to provide basic, leadership and specialized training at the 237-acre Oregon Public Safety Academy in Salem and regionally throughout the state.


Attached Media Files: 2024-06/1187/173191/2024_Fallen_Fire_Fighter_Memorial_Photos.zip

June is Search and Rescue Month in Oregon: Prepare, be aware and stay safe while exploring the great outdoors this summer
Oregon Department of Emergency Management - 06/20/24 2:52 PM

SALEM, Ore. — June 20, 2024 — Warmer weather has arrived, and Oregonians are eager to hike, camp, boat, climb and explore. In recognition of Search and Rescue Month, several state agencies are sharing best practices on how to keep outdoor adventures safe for people and Oregon’s scenic landscape.

“Oregon is one of the best places in the world for outdoor adventure, and we want everyone to get outside and discover all our state has to offer,” Governor Tina Kotek said. “We encourage everyone to prepare for their adventures to stay safe and minimize their impact on the communities they visit. Please stay safe and have fun exploring!”  

On average, more than 1,000 Search and Rescue (SAR) missions are conducted each year in Oregon, and during the last decade, 99% of people needing SAR assistance lived outside the county where they were rescued. Lack of preparedness was often the common denominator.  

“Our SAR teams rescue many folks who are often inexperienced, overconfident and unprepared for the reality of the situation,” said State SAR Coordinator Scott Lucas. “We find people who set out for a hike wearing flip-flops and shorts and carrying no water. They might take an unmarked trail, get disoriented or take a fall, and they could be lost for days.”

Whether traveling for a few hours or a week, people should know their physical limits and plan for activities that won’t exceed their experience. Before heading out, the Oregon Department of Emergency Management recommends the following best practices:

  • Know the trail and conditions – research the trail thoroughly and get accurate directions to the trailhead.
  • Make a plan and tell someone – make sure they know your route, the exact trail name, possible side destinations and when you plan to leave and return. This information is vital for search and rescue if they need to come looking for you.
  • Practice situational awareness – stay vigilant and aware of your surroundings. Keep an eye on trail markers and landmarks so you can provide those details in an emergency. (This includes Oregon Beach Access Numbers on the coast).
  • Listen to your body – know your limits when selecting hikes and when you’re on the trail.  
  • Watch for hazards – if you see signs of bad weather, wildfires, dangerous wildlife activity or other potential hazards, adjust your plans. Never feel bad about turning around early. Have a plan B.
  • Stay on marked trails – straying off the path or following social trails increases the risk of getting lost or injured. It also increases the risk of fatal falls.  
  • Respect trail closures – safety signs and barriers. They are placed there for your safety. Disregarding them can have deadly consequences.
    • Exercise caution when crossing streams or navigating steep terrain – never climb on logs or turn your back on the ocean.  
  • Pack the Day Hike 10 Essentials – include proper equipment, extra food, water and supplies.
  • Follow the seven principles of Leave No Trace – minimize your impact.
  • Stay in touch – There might not be cell coverage and reception on the trail.  
    • Enable Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) on cell phones.  
    • If you are using your cell phone, keep the battery fully charged and switch to airplane mode to conserve battery until you need it.
    • Consider a personal locator beacon (PLB) like InReach or SPOTS, if you need to call for help.
  • Prepare for the weather – layer up, wear appropriate footwear for the terrain and carry an emergency blanket. 
  • Practice water safety – before you go out, plan ahead and check water levels, obstructions, tide information, local regulations and boating access before heading out. The Oregon State Marine Board’s (OSMB) website has a lot of planning resources
    • A map of life jacket loaner stations to borrow if you don’t have your own.  
    • Dress for the water temperature, not the air temperature.  
    • OSMB recommends people recreate with others so they can provide aid more quickly if the unexpected happens.  
    • In 2023, there were 13 recreational boating fatalities where 11 victims were not wearing life jackets; seven were paddlers, one in a sailboat, and six were in motorized boats.

The Oregon State Park system is one of the most popular in the U.S. with more than 52 million day-use visits per year, so it’s no surprise it sees an uptick in visitors throughout the summer months. Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) recommends that visitors stay on designated trails to stay safe. Following social trails or forging your own increases the risk of getting lost, getting injured or experiencing a fatal fall.  

“Even the most beautiful landscapes can be hazardous. We encourage visitors to stay on designated, marked trails to avoid injuries and potentially deadly falls. It’s also important to respect safety signs, trail closures and barriers to enjoy parks safely and responsibly,” said OPRD spokesperson Stefanie Knowlton.”

Oregon State Parks post notices online for park and trail closures as well as tips on how to hike safely.  

Oregon’s SAR program supports the broad spectrum of search and rescue operations throughout the state, including coordinating state and federal agencies involved in search and rescue activities and providing on-scene search and rescue efforts when requested. There is no charge for SAR calls, but if community members would like to help support SAR teams, they can purchase a 1-year or 5-year Oregon SAR card. Purchases help fund search and rescue training, equipment and missions across Oregon by contributing to the Search and Rescue Fund. The fund is managed by the Oregon State Sheriffs’ Association.  

As always, in case of emergencies, dial 9-1-1; most Oregon counties also accept texts to 9-1-1.


You can get this document in other languages, large print, braille, or a format you prefer. For assistance,  
email licinfo@oem.oregon.gov">oem_publicinfo@oem.oregon.gov. We accept all relay calls, or you can dial 711.

Read more about hiking safety tips on the Hike Oregon Blog: https://bit.ly/3XsL2XJ or on the National Park Service website: https://www.nps.gov/articles/hiking-safety.htm 

Stay safe, healthy with tips as summer begins
Oregon Health Authority - 06/20/24 1:45 PM

June 20, 2024

Media contact: Erica Heartquist, 503.871.8843, PHD.Communications@state.or.us

Stay safe, healthy with tips as summer begins

PORTLAND, Ore.—As summer kicks off today, Thursday, June 20, Oregon Health Authority recommends people in Oregon take steps to keep this season from becoming a “bummer” with tips for staying healthy and safe.

The Oregon ESSENCE Summer Hazard Report dashboard allows people to monitor trends in the most common summer-related hazards. The dashboard contains interactive graphs showing total daily counts of emergency department and urgent care center visits in Oregon associated with four injury and illness categories: heat-related illness, water submersion events, wildfire-related smoke inhalation, and air quality-related respiratory illness.

Users can also select data sets by year, going to back to 2018. The dashboard page under each tab also contains a description of the injury or illness, the groups most at risk, and how it can be treated or prevented. The dashboard is updated weekly.

Summer safety covers a variety of topics. Here are some quick tips:

  • Mosquito-borne diseases (West Nile virus, Zika)
    • Eliminate sources of standing water where mosquitoes breed, such as watering troughs and bird baths.
    • Protect yourself during outdoor activities at dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active by using mosquito repellants containing DEET, oil of lemon eucalyptus or Picardin, and follow directions on the container.
    • Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants in mosquito-infested areas. Visit https://www.oregon.gov/oha/PH/DISEASESCONDITIONS/DISEASESAZ/WESTNILEVIRUS/Pages/wnvprevent.aspx to learn more.
  • Cyanobacterial (harmful algal) blooms
    • Avoid areas of water bodies where there are signs of a cyanobacterial bloom, such as water that is foamy, scummy, thick like paint, pea-green, blue-green or brownish red in color.
    • Avoid swimming, water-skiing, wakeboarding, tubing, and other high-speed water activities in areas of the lake affected by a bloom.
    • Watch children and pets to be sure they are not swallowing water or coming in contact with cyanobacterial blooms washed up on the shore or dried on rocks. Visit http://healthoregon.org/hab to learn more.
  • Beach bacteria
    • Visitors to Oregon beaches where a public health advisory is in place for higher-than-normal levels of fecal bacteria should avoid wading in nearby creeks, pools of water on the beach, or in discolored water, and stay clear of water runoff flowing into the ocean.
    • Avoid swimming in the ocean within 48 hours after a rainstorm even if no advisory is in effect. Visit http://healthoregon.org/beach to learn more.
  • Drowning prevention –
  • Extreme heat
    • Visit air-conditioned places, if possible, and limit sun exposure from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. when UV rays are strongest.
    • Use cool compresses, misting, and cool showers and baths, and never leave children in a parked car.
    • Drink plenty of fluids, especially when working outside, and avoid alcohol or liquids with large amounts of sugar. Visit https://www.oregon.gov/oha/ERD/Pages/Tips-Stay-Safe-Extreme-Heat.aspx.
  • Tick-borne diseases
  • Prevent fireworks injuries
  • Watch fireworks displays from a safe distance.
  • Always have an adult supervise fireworks activities and do not allow young children to play with or ignite fireworks.

Call 911 immediately if someone is injured.


Temporary Road Closure in Richland for Cool Desert Nights (Photo)
City of Richland - 06/20/24 1:44 PM
Friday Night Cruise Route
Friday Night Cruise Route

Please use extra caution while driving through central Richland this weekend due to the 30th Annual Cool Desert Nights Classic Car Cruise and Show n Shine festivities. 

On Friday, June 21, 2024, George Washington Way will be closed from Jadwin Avenue to Symons Street for approximately one hour. This closure spans two miles, offering spectators a scenic view of the cars from Downtown Richland to the Uptown Shopping Center. The cruise route will also temporarily close one block of Swift Boulevard, running from George Washington Way to Jadwin Avenue, and from Jadwin Avenue to Knight Street, completing a loop. Richland Police Officers and members of the local Jeep Club will be on hand to assist with traffic flow and pedestrian safety.

The cruise kicks off Friday, June 21, at 6:00 p.m. with staging starting at 4:00 p.m. in the Federal Building Parking Lot. It's not too late to register your car for the cruise; visit www.richlandchamber.org for more information.

On Saturday, June 22, 2024, George Washington Way will close from 5:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. between Williams Boulevard and Symons Street to allow for safe pedestrian crossing between the Uptown Shopping Center and Jefferson Park. Festivities include a pancake breakfast, show n shine, music, merchants, and a Kids’ Zone. The Jadwin side of the Uptown Shopping Center will remain accessible during both events.  Detour routes will be posted.

For more information visit www.richlandchamber.org or follow their Facebook page

Attached Media Files: Friday Night Cruise Route , Road Closure for Cool Desert Nights

ESD 123 Selects New Assistant Superintendent of Finance and Operations (Photo)
ESD 123 - 06/20/24 1:29 PM

Educational Service District 123 is pleased to announce the selection of Michael J. Paquette as the new Assistant Superintendent, Finance and Operations. Paquette, currently of Tumwater, comes to the ESD from the Washington State Board of Accountancy in Olympia where he serves as executive director and as a member of the Governor’s Small Agency Cabinet. Paquette will step into his new role on July 15, 2024.

“Michael’s extensive background in finance and government made him an ideal candidate for this important position,” said ESD 123 Superintendent Steve McCullough. “His leadership skills and deep understanding of both financial operations and governmental policies will undoubtedly strengthen our team. We know he’s going to do a great job.”

Paquette brings with him a wealth of knowledge and experience. He has a long history working in finance, prior to his work with the Board of Accountancy he served as the budget director for the Washington State Health Care Authority, and prior to that he was the assistant director of accounting and financial services for the Washington State Department of Transportation.

Throughout his career he has worked to effectively manage agency resources, has created vital budget projections and has worked to provide overall guidance to the agencies he’s worked for and their boards. He has a strong background in strategic planning, as well as identifying operational goals and performance measures. 

Paquette holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Saint Martin’s University in Lacey, is a licensed certified public accountant and served 22 years in the U.S. Army.

Attached Media Files: 2024-06/1212/173179/M.Paquette.jpg

UPDATED CAUSE: Early Morning structure fire at El Sanchos Taco Shop East Location (Photo)
Bend Fire & Rescue - 06/20/24 1:11 PM

An early morning fire broke out around 1:00 am this morning at 335 NE Dekalb Avenue, El Sancho's Taco Shop East. Reporting witnesses stated they saw flames coming from the West side of the restaurant, on the alley side. The fire originated on the East side of the building, and spread up and into the attic. Fire crews were able to extinguish the fire within 30 mins. The estimated building loss to El Sancho's is $180,000, and contents estimated at $75,000-$85,000. Several cars from the adjacent car dealership, Auto Kings, also sustained damage from the radiant heat 20 feet away. No information on loss for those vehicles. The fire cause is still under investigation. 

Cause of the fire at Sancho's was ruled accidental, caused by improperly disposed ashes from outdoor cooking operations. Safety reminder, as Summer approaches and days get hotter and dryer, please pay extra attention to ashes from any type of wood burning fires, stoves, campfires, etc. The dry, hot climate can extend how long the ashes stay warm for. 

Attached Media Files: 2024-06/6802/173164/Sanchos_IMG_1667.jpg

Press Release: Oregon's Nonfarm Payroll Employment Rises by 4,000 in May
Oregon Employment Department - 06/20/24 10:08 AM


Gail Krumenauer, State Employment Economist 
(971) 301-3771

Video and Audio available at 10 a.m.

Oregon’s Nonfarm Payroll Employment Rises by 4,000 in May

Salem, OR  In May, Oregon’s seasonally adjusted nonfarm payroll employment rose by 4,000 jobs, following a revised gain of 2,400 jobs in April. Health care and social assistance gained 1,900 jobs in May, while leisure and hospitality added 1,000. Monthly declines were largest in retail trade (-800) and construction (-400).

Private-sector job growth has been very slow over the year, gaining 3,500 jobs (+0.2%). Health care and social assistance was the primary source of growth with a solid gain of 16,200 jobs (+5.7%). All four component industries have been adding jobs at a rapid clip. Elsewhere in the private sector, manufacturing dropped 3,700 jobs over the year, retail trade lost 3,400, and construction dropped 2,200 jobs in the past year.

The public sector added 9,100 jobs over the past 12 months. Local, state, and federal government are all at least 2% above their job counts a year ago. Local education gained 3,400 jobs over the year to reach 142,600 in May. This is the first spring that local schools reached the employment level in spring 2019, prior to the pandemic.

Oregon’s unemployment rate was 4.2% in May for the fourth straight month. Looking back at the past few years, Oregon’s monthly unemployment rate has been 4.2% or lower every month since October 2021. The U.S. unemployment rate was 4.0% in May.

Next Press Releases

The Oregon Employment Department plans to release the May county and metropolitan area unemployment rates on Tuesday, June 25, and the next statewide unemployment rate and employment survey data for June on Wednesday, July 17.



All numbers in the above narrative are seasonally adjusted except for the local government education job figures.

The Oregon Employment Department and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) work cooperatively to develop and publish monthly Oregon payroll employment and labor force data. The estimates of monthly job gains and losses are based on a survey of businesses. The estimates of unemployment are based on a survey of households and other sources.

The Oregon Employment Department publishes payroll employment estimates that are revised quarterly by using employment counts from employer unemployment insurance tax records. All department publications use this Official Oregon Series data unless noted otherwise. The department continues to make the original nonfarm payroll employment series available; these data are produced by the BLS.


The PDF version of this news release can be found at QualityInfo.org/press-release. To get the data in other formats such as in Excel, visit QualityInfo.org, select Tools, then choose LAUS or CES under the Economy header. To request the press release as a Word document, contact the person shown at the top of this press release.

To file a claim for unemployment benefits or get more information about unemployment programs, visit unemployment.oregon.gov.

The Oregon Employment Department (OED) is an equal opportunity agency. OED provides free help so you can use our services. Some examples are sign language and spoken-language interpreters, written materials in other languages, large print, audio, and other formats. To get help, please call 503-947-1444. TTY users call 711. You can also send an email to communications@employ.oregon.gov.

El Departamento de Empleo de Oregon (OED) es una agencia de igualdad de oportunidades. El OED proporciona ayuda gratuita para que usted pueda utilizarnuestros servicios. Algunos ejemplos son intérpretes de lengua de señas e idiomas hablados, materiales escritos en otros idiomas, letra grande, audio y otros formatos. Para obtener ayuda, por favorllame al 503-947-1444. Usuarios de TTY pueden llamar al 711. También puede enviar un correo electrónico a communications@employ.oregon.gov.


Attached Media Files: 2024-06/930/173167/May_2024_employment_in_Oregon--_press_release_6.20.24.pdf

Wed. 06/19/24
House fire on West Ridge Ave Bend 6-19-24 (Photo)
Bend Fire & Rescue - 06/19/24 5:08 PM
Credit Bend Fire
Credit Bend Fire

Bend Fire & Rescue was dispatched to a house fire on West Ridge Ave at 04:42 am on 6/19/24. Neighbors called stating the back of a house was on fire. Crews arrived and found a large three-story house with fire on all floors. The main part of the fire was stopped within 30 minutes but took another 3 ½ hours to fully contain the fire in attic and many concealed roof and wall spaces. The house was unoccupied at the time as its undergoing extensive renovations. No other structures were threatened by the fire. Bend Fire was assisted on scene by fire crews from Alfalfa, Cloverdale and Sunriver Fire Departments. Redmond Fire Department sent crews to Bend to help run other medical calls in town. A total of 7 fire engines, 2 ladder trucks, 2 ambulances, and multiple command staff, total of 40 personnel on scene. The building has a value of approximately $2,000,000 and the loss is estimated at least $1,500,000. The home owners and contractors insurance companies have been contacted and will be working to rebuild the house. 

One Bend Fire & Rescue employee sustained injuries in a fall inside the house during fire operations. The employee was treated and released from St Charles Medical Center with non-life-threatening injuries and is recovering at home as of this evening. 

The fire was caused by improperly disposed of oily rags. A contractor was staining the 2nd floor areas and forgot to add water to the bucket of used rags before leaving the day before. Several neighbors reported smelling smoke in the area several hours prior to smoke being seen coming from the house when the 911 calls were made. 

Bend Fire & Rescue reminds everyone that oily rags can start a fire if not properly disposed of. The most common type of spontaneous combustion fires is those caused by improperly disposed of oil and stain-soaked rags. Spontaneous combustion of oily rags occurs when rag or cloth is slowly heated to its ignition point through oxidation. A substance will begin to release heat as it oxidizes. If this heat has no way to escape, like in a pile, the temperature will raise to a level high enough to ignite the oil and ignite the rag or cloth. The fire from this can spread quickly to other combustibles and cause great damage to your home or property. 

To properly and safely dispose of oily rags, Bend Fire & Rescue recommends the following steps:

  1. Use a container with a tight-fitting lid. A metal can is preferable, but a plastic can or zip lock bag can work if nothing else is available. 
  2. Place soiled and used rags inside and then fill the rest the way with water, seal the top and do not open it. This will prevent the oils from oxidizing, and thus keeping the rags from heating up and igniting. 
  3. Contact your local garbage disposal company for their policy on disposal of the can and contents.  Some companies will permit disposal in regular household trash.

Attached Media Files: Credit Bend Fire

Fatal Crash - HWY 211 - Marion County
Oregon State Police - 06/19/24 11:43 AM

Marion County, Ore. 18 June 24- On Tuesday, June 18, 2024, at 12:06 a.m., Oregon State Police responded to a vehicle versus pedestrian crash on Hwy 211, near milepost 1, in Marion County.

The preliminary investigation indicated an eastbound Kia Soul, operated by Keoki Kahee (23) of Canby, struck a pedestrian, Martin Cabanas Salgado (56) from an unknown city, who was reportedly walking on the fog line.

The pedestrian (Cabanas Salgado) was declared deceased at the scene.

The Kia operator (Kahee) and passenger, Taylor Hayes (22) of Canby, were uninjured and were cooperating with investigators.

The highway was impacted for approximately four hours during the on-scene investigation. The cause of the crash is under investigation.

OSP was assisted by the Woodburn Police Department, Woodburn Fire, and ODOT.

# # #

About the Oregon State Police
Oregon State Police (OSP) is a multi-disciplined organization that is charged with protecting the people, wildlife, and natural resources in Oregon. OSP enforces traffic laws on the state’s roadways, investigates and solves crime, conducts postmortem examinations and forensic analysis, and provides background checks, and law enforcement data. The agency regulates gaming and enforces fish, wildlife, and natural resource laws. OSP is comprised of more than 1,400 staff members – including troopers, investigators, and professional staff – who provide a full range of policing and public safety services to Oregon and other law enforcement agencies throughout Oregon.

Fatal Crash - HWY 26 - Crook County
Oregon State Police - 06/19/24 11:18 AM

Crook County, Ore. 17 June 24- On Monday, June 17, 2024, at 5:51 a.m., Oregon State Police responded to a single-vehicle crash on Hwy 26, near milepost 26, in Crook County.

The preliminary investigation indicated a westbound Toyota Tundra, operated by Clifford Dean Shields (54) of Prineville, for unknown reasons, drifted across the eastbound lane, left the roadway, and struck a rock and tree. The vehicle began to roll and came to rest on the passenger side on the east side of the highway. Motorists in the area stopped, extricated the operator, and performed CPR. 

The operator of the Toyota (Shields) was declared deceased at the scene.

The highway was impacted for approximately 3 hours during the on-scene investigation. A medical event is considered the possible cause of the crash.

OSP was assisted by the Crook County Sheriff's Office, Crook County Fire and Rescue, and ODOT.

# # #

About the Oregon State Police
Oregon State Police (OSP) is a multi-disciplined organization that is charged with protecting the people, wildlife, and natural resources in Oregon. OSP enforces traffic laws on the state’s roadways, investigates and solves crime, conducts postmortem examinations and forensic analysis, and provides background checks, and law enforcement data. The agency regulates gaming and enforces fish, wildlife, and natural resource laws. OSP is comprised of more than 1,400 staff members – including troopers, investigators, and professional staff – who provide a full range of policing and public safety services to Oregon and other law enforcement agencies throughout Oregon.

Fatal Crash - Interstate 84 - Umatilla County
Oregon State Police - 06/19/24 11:09 AM

Umatilla County, Ore. 16 June 24- On Saturday, June 16, 2024, at 5:57 p.m., Oregon State Police responded to a two-vehicle crash on Interstate 84, near milepost 220, in Umatilla County.

The preliminary investigation indicated a westbound Dodge Ram 1500, operated by Barbara Claudine Abercrombie (56) of Irrigon, struck the rear of a Peterbilt commercial motor vehicle and trailer, operated by Marshall Lee Mondry (29) of Meridian (ID), as it was slowly descending a steep grade with its hazard lights activated.

The operator of the Dodge (Abercrombie) was declared deceased at the scene. 

The operator of the Peterbilt (Mondry) was not injured.

The highway was impacted for approximately 4 hours during the on-scene investigation. 

OSP was assisted by the Umatilla Tribal Police Department, Umatilla Tribal Medics, and ODOT.

# # #

About the Oregon State Police
Oregon State Police (OSP) is a multi-disciplined organization that is charged with protecting the people, wildlife, and natural resources in Oregon. OSP enforces traffic laws on the state’s roadways, investigates and solves crime, conducts postmortem examinations and forensic analysis, and provides background checks, and law enforcement data. The agency regulates gaming and enforces fish, wildlife, and natural resource laws. OSP is comprised of more than 1,400 staff members – including troopers, investigators, and professional staff – who provide a full range of policing and public safety services to Oregon and other law enforcement agencies throughout Oregon.

Tue. 06/18/24
U.S. Attorney's Office Honors and Celebrates Historical Legacy of Juneteenth
U.S. Attorney's Office - Eastern Dist. of Wash. - 06/18/24 3:10 PM

Spokane, Washington -    U.S. Attorney Vanessa R. Waldref announced today that she will join with Federal, State, and Local leaders, in celebrating Juneteenth, which commemorates the end of slavery in the United States. 

“Juneteenth commemorates the day in 1865, more than two years after the emancipation proclamation took effect, when Major General Gordon Granger landed troops in Galveston, Texas and announced all enslaved persons in that state were now free,” stated U.S. Attorney Waldref. “It is a chance to celebrate the progress made in the fight for civil rights. It is also a day to recognize the work still to be done and recommit ourselves to ensuring freedom and justice for all.”  

As part of the U.S. Attorney’s Office commitment to vigorously enforcing civil rights laws, the office’s United Against Hate program directly connects the United States Attorney’s Office and its local and federal law enforcement partners with a diverse group of community organizations to increase community understanding and reporting of hate crimes and hate incidents. This community outreach program seeks to address the chronic underreporting of hate crimes and hate incidents and build strong relationships between law enforcement and the communities they serve to share resources and respond to potential unlawful acts of hate more effectively. Consistent with this program, the U.S. Attorney’s Office created a dedicated hotline and online portal for complaints of civil rights violations in Eastern Washington. 

U.S. Attorney Waldref further emphasized everyone has a duty to help realize the goal of protecting marginalized groups and the public from hate-motivated crimes. “Working together we can create an Eastern Washington of shared values and foster hope that our communities can be safer, stronger, and more inclusive.”

The U.S. Attorney’s Office’s online civil rights complaint form is available here. The form can be emailed to USAWAE.CivilRights@usdoj.gov, or concerns can be shared by leaving a voice mail for our Civil Rights Team at (509) 835-6306.

Cool Desert Nights Cruises into Richland this Weekend (Photo)
City of Richland - 06/18/24 1:50 PM

The 30th Annual Cool Desert Nights, a community event celebrating classic cars, music, and family fun, takes place on Friday, June 21st, and Saturday, June 22nd in Richland. 

Start the festivities with an early dinner in a nearby restaurant or check out the food vendors in John Dam Plaza, 815 George Washington Way when they open at 5:30 p.m. Then, find a spot along George Washington Way, between Knight Street and Symons to watch the exciting classic car cruise from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. 

The Party in the Park starts rocking in John Dam Plaza at 7:00 p.m. when the electrifying energy of Fastlane, a powerhouse of local talent, takes the stage to deliver an unforgettable 2-hour performance of the iconic Eagles' music. Festival goers will enjoy food vendors and a beer garden. 

On Saturday, June 22, beginning at 7:00 a.m., the Richland Kiwanis will be serving fluffy pancakes in Jefferson Park until 11:00 a.m., while the nearby Show N Shine, where colorful vintage, classic, and sports cars and their owners gather begins at 9:00 a.m. at the Uptown Shopping Center, 1317 George Washington Way. There will also be a Kids' Zone, food vendors, music, and merchants. The highly anticipated awards ceremony is at 3:00 p.m. The event ends at 4:00 p.m. 

Whether you are a seasoned collector, a hobbyist, or simply someone who appreciates the beauty of cars, there's something for everyone at this event.

For more information, see the Richland Chamber of Commerce website, www.richlandchamber.org, or its Facebook Page. You can also find details of the cruise route and Friday’s Party in the Park on www.ci.richland.wa.us/news.  

Attached Media Files: 2024-06/5957/173131/CDN_agenda.jpg

Leader of International Drug Trafficking Organization Operating in Lane County Sentenced to Federal Prison
U.S. Attorney's Office - District of Oregon - 06/18/24 1:50 PM

PORTLAND, Ore.—The leader of an international drug trafficking organization operating in Lane County, Oregon, responsible for trafficking large quantities of methamphetamine, heroin, and cocaine into the state between 2018 and 2020, was sentenced to federal prison today.

Victor Diaz-Ramirez, 33, was sentenced to 135 months in federal prison and five years’ supervised release.

“While communities across our state continue to struggle with the ongoing drug crisis, there are criminal enterprises, like the Diaz-Ramirez drug trafficking organization, whose sole purpose is to profit from addiction and suffering. This far-reaching investigation demonstrates the deep commitment of all involved law enforcement agencies to combatting drug trafficking and keeping our communities safe,” said Nathan J. Lichvarcik, Chief of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Eugene and Medford Branch Offices.

“Drug traffickers like Mr. Diaz-Ramirez prey on our communities by peddling large amounts of methamphetamine, heroin, and cocaine, often to our most vulnerable,” said David F. Reames, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Seattle Field Division. “I am gratified that the hard work of DEA, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and our many partners from law enforcement agencies across Oregon led to the lengthy sentence Mr. Diaz-Ramirez received in this case. Justice was truly served.”

According to court documents, from at least March 2018 through August 2020, while operating out of Mexico, Diaz-Ramirez helped lead an international drug trafficking organization responsible for trafficking large quantities of methamphetamine, heroin, and cocaine from Mexico into the United States. Diaz-Ramirez’s organization used a network of associates to transport the drugs from Southern California to Oregon and deliver them to local distributors in exchange for cash. 

As part of this investigation, law enforcement seized more than 178 pounds of methamphetamine, 12 pounds of heroin, six pounds of fentanyl, 18 rifles, three rifle optics, and ammunition. Investigators also forfeited approximately $1.2 million from the organization, including more than $400,000 in cash. In total, 35 people—including sources of supply in Mexico, couriers, local cell operators in Lane County, and first and second level distributors responsible for sales in and around Eugene—were charged and have been convicted for their roles in Diaz-Ramirez’s organization.

On August 5, 2020, a federal grand jury in Eugene returned an indictment charging Diaz-Ramirez with conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine. On November 1, 2023, Diaz-Ramirez pleaded guilty to a one-count superseding criminal information charging him with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine.

This case was investigated by DEA, FBI, IRS-Criminal Investigation, U.S. Marshals Service, Springfield Police Department, Eugene Police Department, Lane County Sherriff’s Office, Oregon State Police, Linn Interagency Narcotics Enforcement Team (LINE), and Douglas Interagency Narcotics Enforcement Team (DINT). It was prosecuted by Joseph Huynh and Judi Harper, Assistant U.S. Attorneys for the District of Oregon.

This prosecution is the result of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level drug traffickers, money launderers, gangs, and transnational criminal organizations that threaten the U.S. by using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies against criminal networks.


Attached Media Files: PDF Release

Save the date for the March 3-6, 2025, Oregon GOSH Conference, the Pacific Northwest's largest workplace safety and health conference (Photo)
Oregon Dept. of Consumer & Business Services - 06/18/24 11:11 AM
GOSH 2025 logo
GOSH 2025 logo

Salem – With more than 160 workshops and sessions, the Oregon Governor’s Occupational Safety and Health (GOSH) Conference will be held March 3-6, 2025, at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland. The event offers an outstanding opportunity to gain up-to-date knowledge that can be used to strengthen workplace safety and health programs across the state.

The event is the largest workplace health and safety conference in the Pacific Northwest and one of the largest in the U.S. It welcomes everyone from safety committee members and emerging environmental health and safety professionals to quality control supervisors, labor advocates, and employers across industries to gather for a variety of learning opportunities.

Registration for the conference is expected to open in winter 2024. But you can participate in and support the GOSH Conference now. Nominations are being accepted for the 2025 GOSH Awards, which will honor organizations and people who make exceptional contributions to workplace safety and health. Award nominations are due Oct. 25, 2024.

You can also learn about the event’s keynote speaker, Sally Spencer-Thomas, co-founder and president of United Suicide Survivors International. A clinical psychologist and award-winning mental health advocate, Spencer-Thomas is the lead author on the National Guidelines for Workplace Suicide Prevention. During GOSH, her presentation – “You Can’t Fix Your Mental Health With Duct Tape: Why Burnout Mitigation, Mental Health Promotion, Addiction Recovery, and Suicide Prevention are Health and Safety Priorities” – will go to the heart of why mental health in the workplace matters.

Learn more about Spencer-Thomas by visiting the GOSH website’s keynote speaker page

Sponsorship opportunities to support the 2025 GOSH Conference are available, too. And the conference will again feature the Columbia Forklift Challenge, inviting trained forklift drivers to compete in an obstacle course to highlight their skills – and the importance of forklift safety. 

You can stay updated about the conference – including registration, exhibits, the forklift challenge, and other information – by visiting the event’s website. You can also get connected to GOSH updates by signing up to receive emails

The conference is a collaborative effort by the Oregon Occupational Safety and Health Division (Oregon OSHA), the Columbia-Willamette Chapter of the American Society of Safety Professionals, and labor and businesses in Oregon and southwest Washington. 


About Oregon OSHA: Oregon OSHA enforces the state's workplace safety and health rules and works to improve workplace safety and health for all Oregon workers. The division is part of the Department of Consumer and Business Services, Oregon’s largest consumer protection and business regulatory agency. Visit osha.oregon.gov and dcbs.oregon.gov.

Attached Media Files: GOSH 2025 logo , DCBS logo , Oregon OSHA logo

Hospital Association of Oregon Appeals Court Decision in Health Care Market Oversight Program Case
Hospital Association of Oregon - 06/18/24 10:44 AM

Lake Oswego, Ore. — Today, the Hospital Association of Oregon filed a notice of appeal to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, appealing the district court's summary judgment order in the case of Oregon Association of Hospitals and Health Systems v. State of Oregon et al., case number 22-cv-1486 (D. Or.).

The hospital association intends to argue that the state law creating the Health Care Market Oversight Program is unconstitutional and a violation of the Due Process Clause. The hospital association will ask the Ninth Circuit to reverse the U.S. District Court’s order and enter judgment in its favor. 

The Oregon Legislature passed HB 2362 in 2021 to create the Health Care Market Oversight Program, which gives Oregon Health Authority (OHA) significant power to oversee transactions involving health care entities, and aims to promote transparency, support statewide priorities, and monitor impacts.

The hospital association challenged the law on two grounds: first, the law’s open-ended and vague wording violates the Due Process Clause of the U.S. Constitution because it imposes costs and penalties without fair notice or defined standards. And second, the law violates the Oregon Constitution because it delegates legislative power to a state agency, OHA. In May, a U.S. District Court judge ruled the law does not violate the Due Process Clause of the U.S. Constitution and declined jurisdiction over the state constitutional claim.

“This law was intended to enhance health equity and access to care, both goals we support, but it falls short,” said President and CEO Becky Hultberg. “Instead, it excessively empowers the Oregon Health Authority, leading to costly and arbitrary processes that divert resources away from supporting patient care. We look forward to arguing our case before the appellate court.”


About the Hospital Association of Oregon 

Founded in 1934, the Hospital Association of Oregon is a mission-driven, nonprofit trade association representing Oregon’s 61 community hospitals. Together, hospitals are the sixth largest private employer statewide, employing more than 70,000 employees. Committed to fostering a stronger, safer, more equitable Oregon where all people have access to the care they need, the hospital association provides services to Oregon’s hospitals ensuring all are able to deliver dependable, comprehensive health care to their communities; educates government officials and the public on the state’s health landscape and works collaboratively with policymakers, community based organizations and the health care community to build consensus on and advance health care policy benefiting the state’s four million residents. 

Adaptive Management Program Committee meets June 24
Oregon Dept. of Forestry - 06/18/24 10:36 AM

SALEM, Ore. — The Adaptive Management Program Committee will meet at noon on Monday, June 24 in the Clatsop Room, Building C, at the Oregon Department of Forestry headquarters, located at 2600 State St. in Salem. To join virtually, please use the Zoom video conference information found on the agenda.

The committee’s agenda includes:

  • Finalize Eastern Oregon Steep Slopes question package (Substantial decision item)
  • Affirm roads research questions honed by the IRST (Substantial decision item)
  • Introduce process for determining new priorities (Substantial decision item)

The meeting is open to the public to attend in person and online via Zoom. Public comments will be accepted near the start of the meeting. Requests for an interpreter for the hearing impaired or other accommodations for persons with disabilities should be made at least 48 hours before the meeting by emailing ogram@odf.oregon.gov">adaptivemanagementprogram@odf.oregon.gov.

The 13-member committee The Adaptive Management Program Committee helps determine if forest practices are meeting their goals to protect natural resources through a science-based and transparent process. The committee sets the research agenda that the Independent Research and Science Team (IRST) implements. View more information on the AMPC webpage.

Structure Fire at 1933 NW Hill Street on June 18, 2024 (Photo)
Bend Fire & Rescue - 06/18/24 9:58 AM
Photo courtesy of Bend Fire & Rescue
Photo courtesy of Bend Fire & Rescue

At 0522 hours on Tuesday, June 18 2024, multiple callers to 911 reported a structure on fire just west of the Bend Parkway and north of the Revere exit.  First arriving crews found a large house on fire at 1933 NW Hill Street and began suppression efforts.  The fire, which originated on the exterior of the home, burned up the siding and into the attic and void spaces of the structure, resulting in a fire that was both stubborn and challenging to extinguish.  Crews remained on scene until approximately 0930 completing extinguishment, and will recheck the structure periodically throughout the day.  

The 2,600 square foot structure, which was built in 1920, was formerly a care home and had multiple bedrooms.  The home was occupied at the time of the fire by eight adult tenants, all of whom were displaced and are receiving assistance from the Red Cross.  Losses are estimated at $400,000 to the structure and $200,000 to the contents. 

Upon investigation, it was found that cigarettes were improperly discarded into a combustible container on the front deck area of the home.  The fire smoldered for several hours, one tenant reported he thought he smelled smoke at approximately 11:30 pm prior to going to bed but dismissed it as drift smoke from a wildfire.  The fire smoldered undetected, consuming the deck area and traveling up the exterior siding into the attic space.  While the home did have smoke alarms, it does not appear that they operated.  One of the tenants woke up smelling smoke and alerted the other occupants to the fire.  

This could have been a far different outcome had one of the tenants not awakened to the smell of smoke.  In 2022 there were 3,790 civilian fire deaths and 13,250 injuries due to home structure fires.  A smoke alarm can double your chances of surviving a fire, but only if it is working properly.  Smoke alarms are designed to last about 10 years, after that they can start malfunctioning or may quit working altogether.  Bend Fire & Rescue has programs aimed at ensuring that EVERY HOME has at least one working smoke alarm.  For more information, visit our website at https://www.bendoregon.gov/government/departments/fire-rescue/community-resources-programs/home-consultations

Attached Media Files: Photo courtesy of Bend Fire & Rescue

Fatal Crash - HWY 58 - Lane County
Oregon State Police - 06/18/24 8:26 AM

Lane County, Ore. 15 June 24- On Saturday, June 15, 2024, at 3:08 p.m., Oregon State Police responded to a single-vehicle crash on Hwy 58, near milepost 46, in Lane County.

The preliminary investigation indicated an eastbound Ford F-350, operated by Will Ed Bryson Jr. (77) of Klamath Falls, left the roadway for unknown reasons and struck a tree. 

The operator of the Ford (W. Bryson) was declared deceased while in transport to an area hospital.

The passenger of the Ford, Lynda Ellen Bryson (78) of Klamath Falls, was transported by ground ambulance and life-flighted to an area hospital.

The highway was not impacted during the on-scene investigation.

OSP was assisted by Oakridge Fire and ODOT.

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About the Oregon State Police
Oregon State Police (OSP) is a multi-disciplined organization that is charged with protecting the people, wildlife, and natural resources in Oregon. OSP enforces traffic laws on the state’s roadways, investigates and solves crime, conducts postmortem examinations and forensic analysis, and provides background checks, and law enforcement data. The agency regulates gaming and enforces fish, wildlife, and natural resource laws. OSP is comprised of more than 1,400 staff members – including troopers, investigators, and professional staff – who provide a full range of policing and public safety services to Oregon and other law enforcement agencies throughout Oregon.

Fatal Crash - HWY 86 - Baker County
Oregon State Police - 06/18/24 8:14 AM

Baker County, Ore. 14 June 24- On Friday, June 14, 2024, at 9:55 a.m., Oregon State Police responded to a single motorcycle crash on Hwy-86, near milepost 30, in Baker County.

The preliminary investigation indicated an eastbound Harley Davidson motorcycle, operated by Scott Douglas Moss (66) of Boise (ID), failed to negotiate a left-hand turn and left the roadway. The Harley traveled approximately 100 feet along the shoulder and 30 feet down an embankment, ejecting both operator and passenger. The motorcycle came to rest partially on top of the operator. 

The passenger on the Harley, Joan Gayle Moss (68) of Boise (ID), was declared deceased at the scene.

The operator of the Harley (S. Moss) was life-flighted due to injuries.

The highway was not impacted during the on-scene investigation.

OSP was assisted by the Baker County Sheriff's Office and ODOT.

# # #

About the Oregon State Police
Oregon State Police (OSP) is a multi-disciplined organization that is charged with protecting the people, wildlife, and natural resources in Oregon. OSP enforces traffic laws on the state’s roadways, investigates and solves crime, conducts postmortem examinations and forensic analysis, and provides background checks, and law enforcement data. The agency regulates gaming and enforces fish, wildlife, and natural resource laws. OSP is comprised of more than 1,400 staff members – including troopers, investigators, and professional staff – who provide a full range of policing and public safety services to Oregon and other law enforcement agencies throughout Oregon.