Washington County • Elections • Environment September 25
Tualatin Soil and Water Conservation District election features three-way race
The Tualatin Soil and Water Conservation District (TSWCD) has five positions up for election this year, yet much of the voting public is not only unaware of who the candidates are, many Washington County residents simply don’t know that the board exists at all, what it does, or why it even matters. Here's more on the local candidates running for the board this year.
FreeWashington County • Elections • Column September 24
From the newsroom: What to expect from our newsroom for election coverage
Here we are, 40 days from the November 3 election. It might seem like an arbitrary number, and you’re probably right, but for our newsroom, it marks a mad scramble to try to fit as much coverage as we can into the coming weeks as we march closer and closer to Election Day. Here’s what to expect from us.
Oregon • Politics • Transportation September 22
ODOT: Keep political signs out of right of way
The Oregon Department of Transportation is asking people to stop putting election-related signs in state owned right of ways.
Banks • Government • Community September 21
Deadline looms for 2020 Banks Citizenship Award nominations
The deadline to nominate someone for the 2020 Banks Citizenship Award — a recognition given to someone who has gone above and beyond for the Banks area — is September 30.
FreeFire • Washington County • Oregon September 18
Final daily fire update for Friday, September 18
With overnight rains in our area, this will be our final daily wildfire update, though we will continue to investigate, write about, and follow the continuing story of Oregon’s worst fire season in recent history.
FreeFire • Washington County • Oregon September 17
Thursday, September 17 Fire Update
It's raining, and other updates for Thursday evening on wildfires throughout the state.
FreeTillamook State Forest • Wildfire • ODF September 16
Tillamook, Clatsop forests to reopen to public use Friday
The Tillamook and Clatsop State Forests are expected to reopen to public use on Friday, September 18 at 1 a.m., according to the Oregon Department of Forestry. Fire danger — currently "Extreme" — will remain at "High," the agency said.
FreeFire • Washington County • Oregon September 16
Wednesday, September 16 Fire Update
Updates for Wednesday morning on fires in Washington Country and other regional fires, cleanup, and recovery efforts.
Elections • Letter to the Editor • HD32 September 16
Letters to the Editor: House District 32
Two letters to the editor, each in support of a different candidate for House District 32.
FreeFire • Washington County • Oregon September 15
Tuesday, September 15 Fire Update
Here is this morning’s fire update. We’ll continue daily fire updates through Friday, and hopefully be able to resume a more regular publishing schedule if fire activity calms down enough after that. Today, updates on three regional fires, and more.
FreeTillamook State Forest • Wildfire • ODF September 14
Oregon Department of Forestry extends public forest shutdown through Wednesday
The Oregon Department of Forestry plans to keep all forests under their purview closed to public entry and use through at least Wednesday, September 16. The earliest they could open is Thursday, September 17. For logging, if a favorable forecast holds, this region may enter IFPL 3 at 4 a.m. on Tuesday, allowing limited industrial use of the forests.
Oregon • South Fork Forest Camp • Wildfire September 14
In September, 124 South Fork Forest Camp inmates deployed to wildfires
At least 124 inmates from the South Fork Forest Camp, a joint Oregon Department of Corrections and Department of Forestry facility, have been deployed to fight at least six wildfires this month, according to a spokesperson for the DOC.
FreeFire • Washington County • Oregon September 14
Monday, September 14 fire update
Evacuations lessened in Washington County, mop up begins for two fires, arson ring rumors discounted by local, state, federal law enforcement, and more
FreeFire • Cherry Grove • Hagg Lake September 13
Powerline Fire is ‘well secured’; all evacuations to lift at 7 p.m.
“The Powerline Fire is well secured," the Oregon Department of Forestry said Sunday afternoon, noting that all evacuations for the fire would be lifted at 7 p.m. and that command would be turned back over to the Gaston Fire District.
FreeOregon • Wildfire • Government September 12
State Fire Marshal Jim Walker resigns, Mariana Ruiz-Temple appointed to post
Oregon is in the midst of one of, if not the, worst fire seasons experienced in modern Oregon history. Today, without explanation, the state’s top fire official — Oregon State Fire Marshal Jim Walker — was placed on paid administrative leave. Then, hours later, the Oregon State Police announced he had resigned.
Fire • Weather September 11
Oregon disaster declaration at White House and other fire updates
The state of Oregon was declared to be in an emergency on Thursday by the White House, a move that allows additional federal resources and funding to be deployed as the state grapples with unprecedented wildfires largely west of the Cascades.
FreeBanks • Wildfire • Clackamas County September 10
Clackamas Community College wrestling team evacuates to Banks
The Clackamas Community College wrestling team is evacuating from wildfires in Clackamas County, and will be lodged at Schlegel Hall in Banks.
FreeTillamook State Forest • Wildfire • ODF September 10
Region closed to logging, other industrial forest use
Beginning Friday, September 11 at 1 a.m., logging and other industrial forest activities in the entirety of the Northwest Oregon Forest Protective Association region will be closed due to wildfire danger and limited firefighting resources.
FreeFire • Washington County • Powerline Fire September 10
September 10 Morning Update
Updates from the Powerline Fire, ODF, and more for Thursday morning.
FreeFire • Cherry Grove • Hagg Lake September 9
Updates from the Powerline Fire: 50% contained, helicopter suffers mechanical failure
The Powerline Fire south of Hagg Lake is roughly 50% contained, according to the Gaston Rural Fire District.
FreeTillamook State Forest • Wildfire • ODF September 9
Tillamook State Forest closed to public use
The Tillamook State Forest is closed to the public, as are other forestlands protected by the agency in northwest Oregon due to extreme wildfire danger and limited firefighting resources.
Crime • Banks • Police Log September 9
Banks August 2020 Police Log
As presented to the Banks City Council by the Washington County Sheriff's Office's Frank Ward, here is a summary of calls in the city of Banks from August 2020.
FreeBanks • Wildfires • Highway 6 September 9
Morning update: Fire stopped near Glenwood, stop calling 911 for smoke
As wildfires rage across Oregon for a third day, here are some quick updates.
FreeFire • Cherry Grove • Hagg Lake September 8
Fire burning south of Hagg Lake prompts evacuations
An active fire burning south of Hagg Lake has prompted evacuations from the community of Cherry Grove and the surrounding areas as a largely uncontained wildfire grows in the area, driven by high winds and limited firefighting resources.
Fire • WOEC • Weather September 7
West Oregon Electric customers outside Vernonia will lose electricity from 9 p.m. to 3 a.m.
At 9 p.m., West Oregon Electric Co-op customers will see their lights go dark and their electricity access ended as the Vernonia-based cooperative plans to shut off power as heavy winds down power lines and spark dozens of fires throughout NW Oregon.
Fire • ODF • Weather September 7
High winds beginning early afternoon on Monday drive fire danger up
The Oregon Department of Forestry moved fire danger in the region from “High” to “Extreme” on Monday morning, bumped Industrial Fire Precaution Levels to 3 for the entire Tillamook Forest and surrounding region, closed gates on certain forest roads along Highway 6 and 26, and have asked outdoor enthusiasts to vacate the forests and stay away as concern mounts over dry east winds expected to punch into the region Monday evening. A Red Flag Warning remains in effect until 8 p.m. Wednesday.
Banks • Banks Fire District • Lawsuit September 4
Lawsuit alleges Banks fire chief fired employee in retaliation over whistleblower activity
A lawsuit filed Thursday alleges that Banks Fire District Chief Rodney Linz fired at least one employee in retaliation for raising concerns with elected officials over alleged nepotism and fudged certifications surrounding his adult daughter, Samantha Linz, a volunteer with the district.
Fire • Traffic • Coronavirus September 3
Fires, traffic, COVID-19: Welcome to Labor Day weekend
It's a holiday weekend, and it can be a dangerous one without precautions. Officials from a number of government agencies locally and across the state are gearing up for this weekend as a multitude of factors combine to potentially throw a wrench into holiday plans.
Fire • ODF • Tillamook State Forest September 2
Hot weather prompts shift in precautions for logging in region
For those who work in the Tillamook State Forest and surrounding forests protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry, logging and other commercial activities will need to shift certain activities out of the hottest parts of the day as much of the region moves to Industrial Fire Precaution Level 3 beginning Thursday morning.
FreeBanks School District • Teachers • Coronavirus September 2
Banks School District, unions gear up for school year start
As the start to Banks’ school year — September 8 — draws closer, the Banks School District administration has met at least three times already with the Banks Education Association, a union representing 58 teaching staff members in Banks, to hash out items of concern, such as an onsite teaching requirement, as the district gears up for an academic year unlike any seen in school history.