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“Less mandates and more dialogue are critical to managing public safety”
A letter has been sent on Labor Day from Timber Unity
Board President Mike Pihl to Governor Kate Brown in regards to her recent executive orders on Covid-19 vaccine mandates
Dear Governor Brown,
I represent Timber Unity Association, an Oregon 501c6 non-profit membership association with a mission to protect and defend the livelihoods of Oregon workers whose incomes are dependent on the natural resource economy. Today, on this Labor Day, our association is speaking out on behalf of the public employees and healthcare workers for whom you have issued a requirement of mandatory Covid-19 vaccination as a condition of workplace employment. Given that public employment and healthcare employment tend to be the predominant work opportunities in rural communities outside of natural resource jobs, many of the industry workforce we represent are spouses or parents of nurses and other healthcare workers; law enforcement and corrections officers; volunteer and regular firefighters; and other state workers.
At the beginning of this pandemic, we as a board encouraged our members to mask up to protect businesses and workers. When groups have asked us to participate in rallies in opposition to your executive orders, we’ve refrained from encouraging people to aggregate out of an abundance of caution for the health and safety of our members. As it relates to vaccines, we have discouraged misinformation from being distributed on our sites. Like the rest of Oregon, our board runs the spectrum of those who have been fully vaccinated, those who’ve acquired natural convalescent immunity, and those who have philosophical issues with vaccinations. We’ve encouraged members to make their medical choices based on medical advice, not social media memes.
During the pandemic, our organizational time has been to be a resource to the state during other natural disasters like wildfires and the winter ice storms. We’ve worked to be a resource in helping interpret executive orders so our members can comply with the orders – even when we haven’t agreed with the orders themselves. But with the most recent vaccine mandates, we feel the need to speak up and tell you about the impact that will happen in rural communities if they go into effect as written.
We are aware of the pressure the recent Covid surge is having across the state. It is pushing healthcare and emergency management to the edge of its capacity. And with new mutations on the horizon and winter months coming, we can anticipate that we’re not out of the woods and another surge is on the horizon. Moreover, until we see some rain, we can fully expect to be in fire season when your vaccine mandates become operable. Therefore, it’s critical that we work to find a compromise that doesn’t put key public workers and healthcare workers in the position of walking away from their employment over philosophical reasons. Right now, these essential frontline workers have been going full tilt since the beginning of the pandemic. Cutting them loose over a vaccine debate doesn’t just cost the state in terms of exacerbating a skilled workforce crisis, it costs taxpayers money to hire new workforce, particularly the high cost of hiring out-of-state traveling healthcare as replacements.
Governor Brown, we hope you’re aware that in recent weeks, studies have shown that immunity acquired from contracting Covid-19 can be as protective as a vaccine, particularly against the Delta variant. We know from the states tracking reinfection that the Centers for Disease Control pegs reinfection at 1% or less. That makes the risk of reinfection comparable to the risk of a breakthrough infection for a vaccinated individual. We are also not seeing reports of reinfected individuals being hospitalized or dying from a second infection.
We are asking that you give direction to the Oregon Health Authority to include in these vaccine mandates that public workers and healthcare employees who can demonstrate through laboratory testing that they have positive antibodies for Covid-19 that they be allowed to continue to resume the important work they provide to the communities in which they live. By broadening your mandate, you’ll avert a labor workforce crisis in critical public services and safety at a time when we can’t afford to lose workers. If even a handful of firefighters, nurses, or law enforcement leave their jobs or take early retirement, in the smaller communities in Oregon, it leaves us dangerously short of qualified and/or licensed personnel to do key jobs. Moreover, because these workers have been on the frontlines, many have already contracted Covid-19 at some point during the pandemic. If they still show positive antibodies, we should continue to allow them to work in these roles as they have since the beginning of the pandemic.
The other issue we believe needs to be addressed is the Employment Division’s stance that refusing a vaccine as part of workforce requirements is insubordination, therefore, not a benefits-eligible termination of employment. There are reasons besides religious and medical that people would be hesitant to take a vaccine, especially where only one FDA-approved option exists, and the others are still in Emergency Use Authorization. If, but for refusing this vaccine, any other reduction-in-force of these employees would have rendered them eligible for unemployment benefits, then the Employment Division should maintain a policy of extending benefits in this circumstance. Previously, the Legislature has extended unemployment insurance beyond the scope of eligibility or duration – we believe strongly this should be one of those occurrences where benefits are extended to those that are terminated for failure to meet a workplace requirement of vaccination.
Conversely, if unemployment benefits are not extended, then we would support that vaccine injuries which public employees and healthcare workers experience as a result of the mandate are covered by the state for long-term disability. This would be in the same manner the United States’ Department of Defense and the Veterans’ Affairs Administration covers long-term disability for members of the military when vaccine injuries occurred because the vaccine is a requirement as a condition of military employment.
Governor Brown, you have it within your authority to provide maximum flexibility on these mandates, while still managing the important task of public safety. You also can send a strong message to private employers by implementing flexible policy that recognizes a broader way to reach heard immunity. Less mandates and more dialogue are critical to managing public safety. It’s time to change course to achieve a balanced need to manage through the remainder of the pandemic as it moves to an endemic disease, with the need to maintain critical public sector and healthcare workforce, especially in resource-starved areas of our state. We stand ready to help with more workable solutions.
Mike Pihl, President
Timber Unity Association
|Post Date: 2021-09-06 17:16:22||Last Update: 2021-09-06 20:10:44|
Even upscale Portland neighborhoods seem unsafe
Three people are recovering from gunfire related injuries after a shooting
inside and outside of a busy restaurant in the Pearl District Neighborhood of Portland, Oregon.
On Saturday, September 4, 2021, at 1:19p.m., Central Precinct officers were dispatched to a report of a shooting at Northwest 10th Avenue and Northwest Davis Street. When they arrived, they did not locate any victims but found evidence of gunfire and a significant number of people in the area. It took a significant number of officers to secure the crime scene. Crews from the Portland Bureau of Transportation assisted officers with traffic control.
Officers soon after learned that three people had arrived at local hospitals with gunshot wounds. One adult female and 2 juvenile (teenage) males were treated for injuries that are non-life threatening. Officers confirmed the injured were connected to the Pearl District shooting.
The Enhanced Community Safety Team responded to the scene. Preliminary investigation indicates that a verbal argument led to a physical fight between a group of known people inside the restaurant. Shots were fired and the group moved outside the restaurant where more shots were fired. Investigators have confirmed the three people injured were a part of the prior confrontation and there's no indication any bystanders were struck.
One adult male was detained for the investigation and a gun was seized as evidence. No charges have been filed at this point.
Detectives believe that several people left the scene without waiting to speak to police. If anyone has information about this case, they're asked to contact the police.
|Post Date: 2021-09-05 09:33:23||Last Update: 2021-09-05 09:54:40|
Several bills affect the operation and bottom line of businesses
Editor's note: This is the third of a multipart series on Tina Kotek – her past and her future – as well as where her political ambitions might take her
As Speaker of the House, Tina Kotek carries a lot of power deciding which bills will be heard seriously directing her caucus to vote for, which will receive a courtesy hearing in a quid pro quo move, and which get trampled on the cutting floor. The 2021 Session summarized her philosophy of taxation: With record revenues in the coffers, she led her Democrat allies to raise
taxes on the citizens of Oregon.
Kotek has promoted the review of all taxation bills saying that just as tax credits are reviewed periodically, so taxes should also be reviewed for sufficiency. This mindset has driven her agenda in legislative sessions. Her caucus pulled off the second big rip-off costing individual taxpayers $15 million reducing the kicker by passing SB 846
along party lines.
In a reverse strategy, in 2016 session she fostered an increase in tax revenue with the passage of the union’s legislation to raise Oregon's minimum wage
, the strongest equal pay law in the nation, touted as the nation's first fair work week law. She claims success for working families, but Oregonlive reported they were not so pleased with the increased taxes withheld.
Several bills affect the operation and bottom line of businesses. One such bill Kotek helped to sponsor and directed her caucus to vote in was the Producer Responsibility Program. SB 582
establishes a program for packaging, printing and writing paper and food serviceware, which requires producers to join a program plan for recycling materials creating a new industry under approval of DEQ.
On Facebook she says, “Businesses that repeatedly violate our air quality and environmental standards put our communities in danger. The DEQ should have the authority to deny permits based on multiple past violations so we can prevent avoidable catastrophes like the 2018 fire at NW Metals
.” In 2021 Kotek sponsored HB 3372
blindsiding industries with a one-strike-and-you’re-out rule that would close the business if they had history of noncompliance with environmental quality.
Oregon is rich in minerals and the only producer of emery in the U.S. The Mined Land Regulation and Reclamation program is supported by fees paid by natural resource extraction permittees. In an unprecedented move Kotek sponsored HB 4302
in special session to raise the fees on permits for mineral exploration, mining operations, exclusion certificates, gas and oil drilling and exploration and geothermal well drilling operation. It also limits the number and distribution of onshore exploration sites and oil, gas and geothermal wells, limiting new developers from exploring more efficient and cost saving electricity.
The power displayed in the 2021 session was Kotek’s ability to lock in an alternative to cap-and-trade helping to sponsor and pass HB 2021
. This bill requires retail electricity providers to reduce greenhouse gas emissions associated with electricity sold to Oregon consumers to 80% below baseline emissions levels by 2030, 90% below baseline emissions levels by 2035 and 100% below baseline emissions levels by 2040. Electric companies are required to develop clean energy plans for meeting clean energy targets, as if zero emissions were even possible or healthy for plant life.
|Post Date: 2021-09-04 13:09:51||Last Update: 2021-09-04 09:27:36|
Debate over the Columbia River Crossing plagued the state
Editor's note: This is the second of a multipart series on Tina Kotek – her past and her future – as well as where her political ambitions might take her
Tina Kotek earned her Masters degree in International Studies at the University of Washington, which made her a natural as Speaker of the House of Representatives to cochair the Oregon-China Sister State Committee, having the purpose to host and entertain delegations visiting from and to the provinces in China, and to promote exports to China and Chinese investments within Oregon. The Oregon China Sister State Relations Council president is Lan Jin. Lan is the principal of a business consultant company called Octaxias. Although the company boasts of helping thousands of business owners access the Chinese markets, only high-profile names are mentioned on its website. The company’s “Latest News
” page includes Speaker Kotek pictured with Lan after arranging her trip to China in 2014.
Almost as soon as Kotek was selected Speaker, debate over the Columbia River Cross plagued the state. She was the legislative lead on the project accused of stonewalling the public from receiving honest answers when figures did not add up. She defended not listening
to public comments over the controversy of the $10 billion price tag attached to a state-of-the-art bridge design. Her excuse was that the public views were wrong, but as time revealed, they were right. She states she wanted to make the project the best it could be, but when Washington State wouldn’t share in funding, Kotek supported a plan called the “Oregon Only CRC
In Kotek’s biography
on the legislature website, she claims she led the way to a historic investment in the state's transportation infrastructure package -- HB 3055
-- a 10-year $5.3 billion bill that will increase gas taxes to 40 cents by 2024. However, she voted no on the bill explaining, “it does not include a requirement for ODOT to “right-size” projects...of congestion management. ...does not include community workforce or project labor requirements...” She does claim, “this bill adopts many provisions from my efforts,” even though she voted no.
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Her biography goes on to say she made the first-ever statewide investment in public transit, and created a fund to help individuals purchase zero-emission vehicles. It is blatantly clear her shepherding of the 2017 Transportation Package has paved the way for tolls, used as congestion pricing, as well as the vehicle mile tax among other things.
The whole idea of zero emissions has been designed around inducement. Promoting electric vehicles through tax credits for vehicles purchases and recharging sites. She directed her caucus to pass HB 2165
along party lines authorizing electric companies to recover costs from retail consumers for infrastructure to support transportation electrification, and increases manufacturer's suggested retail price for hydrogen fuel-powered light-duty zero-emission vehicles to qualify for standard and Charge Ahead zero-emission and electric vehicle rebates.
On party voting lines, Kotek moved her caucus to pass electric vehicle tax credits and requires State Parks and Recreation Department to allow for installation of public electric vehicle charging stations in HB 2290
Speaker Kotek’s agenda to push electricity leaves an uncertainty if electric companies will be able to guarantee enough energy to supply the state continuously.
|Post Date: 2021-09-03 17:03:58||Last Update: 2021-09-03 17:11:32|
“We will resist unconstitutional mandates”
The Malheur County Sheriff
has release a statement in response to Oregon Governor Kate Brown's recent demands that everyone in the State of Oregon must wear a mask both indoors and outdoors, whether vaccinated or un-vaccinated for Covid-19, and vaccination mandates.
"Malheur County is a great place to live, work, and visit. The Malheur County Sheriff's Office is proud to be a part of creating the high quality of life that we enjoy here."
For the above stated reasons, I feel it necessary to write this letter in reference to protecting the freedoms and liberties that are granted to all U.S. citizens by the Constitution of the United States of America.
The citizens of Malheur County are good hard working free-thinking people who possess a high degree of common sense and a solid educational foundation.
All of the alleged science that has been evolving from State and Federal agencies has apparent political ideations that our Malheur County population has has seen through from the beginning. That in no way means that we take this pandemic lightly. We all have friends and relatives who have suffered as a result of this horrible disease. However, that does not equate to a governmental ability to mandate that an individual or a population of people must forgo their freedoms or liberties. With that degree of common sense come the ability to make rational decisions to stay home when ill, wash hands and stay away from obviously ill people. We all learned that from childhood and do not need to be politically parented. Every citizen should enjoy the liberty to choose for themselves the best actions to take. It is not government's place to mandate such things as the wearing of masks, or the need fore vaccinations. These should be personal choices and no-one else's business. At some point people have to realize there are consequences for their choices.
If we are truly interest in the health of our citizens we must also look at the damage unnecessary mandates have caused by creating anxiety and mental health issues of those who are now faced with taking a vaccination they do not believe to be safe or lose their livelihoods.
As elected Sheriff of Malheur County I believe that it's not the government's job to protect our health. It's the government's job to protect our Rights, Freedoms, and Liberties. It's each of our job to protect our own health.
"When you trade liberty for safety, you end up losing both." (Ben Franklin)
It is important to remember that "the Constitution of the United States was not written to restrain the citizen's behavior. It was written to restrain the government's behavior." (Rand Paul)
It has become very apparent that certain governmental heads have used this pandemic to enact emergency procedures and are testing the waters of tolerance from the loss of freedom to alleged safety. I agree with our citizens that these mandates do not fall within the superior mandates of the Constitution of the United States, which I am sworn to follow above lower orders of (other) elected officials.
Please be advised that the Office of Sheriff in Malheur County will not be a source of enforcement for your mask or vaccination mandates. Furthermore, we will resist future unconstitutional mandates.
Sheriff Brian E. Wolfe
|Post Date: 2021-09-03 15:27:09||Last Update: 2021-09-03 16:43:56|
“We’ve committed to an inclusive and accessible process”
House and Senate Redistricting Committees Release
Proposed Maps for Public Review and Testimony
The House and Senate Committees on Redistricting released proposed congressional and legislative maps
delineating new district boundaries for Oregon’s congressional and legislative districts. The presented maps are not final and will be used by community members to provide input during the 12 virtual public hearings
held September 8 through September 13.
“There has been an impressive amount of public engagement throughout the redistricting process thus far,” said Senator Kathleen Taylor (D-Portland) who chairs the Senate Committee on Redistricting. “We remain committed to fairness, transparency and following the law as we continue to hear from members of the community and finalize electoral maps.”
The proposed maps were created in alignment with statutory criteria
. The public is invited to testify and give the committees’ members feedback on the electoral lines.
“We’ve committed to an inclusive and accessible process,” said Representative Andrea Salinas (D-Lake Oswego), co-chair of the House Committee on Redistricting. “Already we’ve heard a record amount of testimony at the beginning of the year following 10 public hearings and we look forward to hearing from the public again next week to ensure fair, representative maps.”
The Legislative website on redistricting
has more information on redistricting, to sign up to testify, or to access to previous public hearings held by the committees, visit www.oregonlegislature.gov/redistricting
Once a decade, based on U.S. Census Data, states redraw electoral lines to reflect population shifts, and take into account changes in demographics to ensure fair representation in government. Due to a delay in Census data caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Oregon Supreme Court extended the deadline for completing the new maps to September 27.
As Oregon’s population growth outpaced other states, the state will receive an additional sixth Congressional seat in the U.S House of Representatives. Thus, the committees will draw new lines for six Congressional Districts in addition to drawing lines for Oregon’s 30 State Senate and 60 State House Districts. District lines will be informed by 2020 Census Data and public testimony. Those lines are required to be aligned with Oregon’s statutory criteria.
|Post Date: 2021-09-02 19:17:51||Last Update: 2021-09-05 10:59:19|
So much for the 2021 State Fair slogan "Fun Make a Comeback"
The big news story
from the Salem Statesman Journal was that over twelve people complained about masks. Over twelve people complained. That’s their breaking news story. It was such great news that it was picked up
over 1,700 miles away in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Breathlessly, the story read,
Upwards of a dozen complaints were filed to Oregon's workplace safety agency this past weekend over concerns that the state's outdoor mask mandate was not being observed at the Oregon State Fair.
Reporters seem not to go out anymore in person to get the story, so they make a report like this with photos making it look like the fair is sparsely attended when in fact thousands are going. Maybe 350,000 if the media has not scared attendees away. The media reported that Governor Kate Brown said that the Oregon State Patrol would enforce masking. No, OSP did not. A memo from OSHA to vendors
at the fair sent a ripple of compliance, but otherwise had little effect. Everyone was having fun. No one was being harassed or arrested.
The memo read, in part,
Under the Oregon Safe Employment Act and Oregon OSHA's rules related to penalty calculation, the minimum penalty for a serious violation is $100 and the maximum penalty is $12,675. Penalties are typically determined based on the severity and probability of the violation cited, as well as upon the size of the employer.
However, a willful violation -- including situations where the employer is aware of the requirement and chooses to continue to operate in violation of it -- carries a minimum penalty of $8,900 and a maximum penalty of $126,749.
Vendors, exhibitors, and other similar employers should therefore be aware that violations will be characterized as "willful" violat ions if Oregon OSHA concludes that the employer was made aware of the facial covering requirements -- including direction received from the operator of the venue -- and continued to disregard the violation. This is distinct from whatever sanction or enforcement mechanisms may be available to the venue operator as part of the contractual relationship.
So much for the 2021 State Fair slogan "Fun Make a Comeback." OSHA made sure that didn't happen.
In attendance for eight hours at the fair on August 30th an estimated 75-80% were mask free. Two days later it seemed like many more than that were mask free. It seems that many Washingtonians and Oregonians both seem tired of the world that Washington State Governor Jay Inslee and Oregon Governor Kate Brown put us in a year and a half ago.
Citizens, themselves, while the local media holed up in their homes, citizens went out since March 2020 and photo documented that no emergency was going on...not then and not now. With time at home citizens started doing their own independent research. Some have been on the trail of how many on social media posted they took the jab, posting memes to that effect, then how soon after there was an obituary about their "sudden” deaths. Many of them were young.
We will know after September 6, 2021, if the media fearmongering worked or citizens flocked to the Oregon State Fair, 350,000 strong, and had a fabulous time.
|Post Date: 2021-09-02 18:10:32||Last Update: 2021-09-02 19:17:51|
“Roe vs Wade enshrined reproductive health care as a constitutionally protected right”
BIPOC Slams Court for Standing Against Abortion
The Supreme Court on Wednesday denied a bid to stop Texas from banning abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected. That sparked comments by the Oregon Legislative Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) Caucus blasting Texas Governor for signing into law Senate Bill 8
to ban abortions after six weeks, as well as -- in their words -- encouraging private citizens to act as bounty hunters.
The BIPOC Caucus includes: Senators Lew Frederick (D-Portland), Kayse Jama (D-Portland), James Manning (D-Eugene) and Representatives Teresa Alonso Leon (D-Woodburn), Wlnsvey Campos (D-Aloha), Andrea Valderrama (D-Portland), Mark Meek (D-Oregon City), Khanh Pham (D-Portland), Ricki Ruiz (D-Portland), Andrea Salinas (D-Lake Oswego), Tawna Sanchez (D-Portland). They release a confusing statement about reproductive health that means the opposite of abortion:
“Roe vs Wade enshrined reproductive health care as a constitutionally protected right. In Oregon, we have a long history of protecting reproductive rights and removing barriers to accessing abortion because we know abortion is healthcare.
"BIPOC communities are most often forced to resort to unsafe abortions due to reproductive healthcare restrictions, a symptom of institutionalized white supremacy and patriarchy. Senate Bill 8
once again disproportionately takes away our constitutional right to make decisions about our own bodies as a worst case scenario, and forces those with the resources to travel across state lines for healthcare access as a best case scenario. This bounty hunting draconian abortion ban is an assault on our fundamental right to choose, and we condemn the passage of this bill.
Science has discovered that at the time of conception there is a flash of light
that they can’t explain. The flash, sparked by zinc in the egg meeting the sperm, starts embryogenesis, at which time DNA identifies the personhood. But, apparently as seen from past legislation counting an unborn child as a person in the case of killing the mother, it isn’t about the fetus but what happens to the mother. Otherwise, killing the fetus would be a crime any time.
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Do these legislators truly represent Blacks and people of color? Do they enjoy their minority status so much that they aim to keep it by reducing their race through abortions? They cry white supremacy for not letting them destroy themselves. But as Black people made up 12 percent of the U.S., they account for 38 percent of reported abortions. For ages 15-44, Black abortions are 3.8 times higher than white abortions and 2.15 times higher than Hispanic abortions. Black women average 1.6 more pregnancies than White women but are five times more likely to have a pregnancy that ends in abortion.
You get the picture. If it is white supremacy to protect the extinction of the Black race by protecting their unborn defenseless babies, what does that make them?
|Post Date: 2021-09-02 15:57:01||Last Update: 2021-09-02 18:10:32|
Elected leaders seem incompetent
The Portland Police Bureau's Enhanced Community Safety Team (ECST) has reported
there were nine shootings over the course of 16 hours, beginning just after noon on August 31, 2021, through the early morning hours of September 1, 2021.
Two of the shootings resulted in people being seriously injured and one shooting involved a service animal being killed.
On August 31, 2021, at 12:12 p.m., officers responded to the Springwater Trail near the 9400 Block of Southeast Cooper after shots were heard. Officers located multiple cartridge casings in the area of a homeless encampment at this location. (Case #2021-242431)
On August 31, 2021, at 5:49 p.m., officers were dispatched to the 5000 Block of NE 101st Ave on a report of a shooting. (Case #2021-242647)
On August 31, 2021 at 7:40 p.m., officers were dispatched to a shooting in the 1700 Block of Southeast 122nd Avenue, involving an injured dog. Officers located crime scene which consisted of multiple cartridge casings. Officers located an intended victim and a service dog, which succumbed to gunfire related injuries. This investigation has been assigned to ECST. (Case #2021-242798)
On August 31, 2021, at 9:07 p.m. Officers were dispatched to a report of a male shot in the area of Northeast 13th Avenue and Northeast Multnomah Street. Officers located a victim suffering from a gunshot wound and provided immediate trauma care. The victim was transported to an area hospital with a serious injury. This investigation has been assigned to ECST. (Case #2021-242875)
On August 31, 2021 at 9:10 p.m., officers responded to the report of a shooting in the 2000 Block North Lombard Street. Officers located a victim with damage to vehicle caused by gunfire. Witnesses report that the victim and suspect in this case had no interaction and that suspect discharged firearm into the victim's vehicle and fled the area. (Case #2021-242880)
On August 31, 2021, at 9:40 p.m., there was a report of a disturbance which ended with a shooting in the area of the 1900 Block SE 122nd Avenue. (Case #2021-242906)
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On August 31, 2021, at 11:08 p.m., officers were dispatched to a shots fired call in the area of North Portsmouth Avenue and North Willis Blvd. Officers contacted several individuals, one who reported being in physical confrontation with a group. A firearm was displayed during the confrontation and the victim ran off when shots were fired. (Case #2021-242960)
On September 1, 2021, at 1:05 a.m., officers were dispatched to a report of a shooting with a victim injured in the 6200 Block of Northeast Columbia Blvd. Officers arrived and found a male victim suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. Officers provided immediate trauma care and the victim was transported to an area hospital with critical injuries. This investigation has also been assigned to ECST. (Case #2021-243035)
On September 1, 2021, at 4:25 a.m., officers were called to Southeast 74th Ave/ Southeast Reedway Street on a report of shots in the area. Officers located a crime scene consisting of more than 20 cartridge casings, an unoccupied vehicle, and an area residence which had been stuck by gunfire.(Case #2021-243106)
The Portland Police Bureau has stated that these incidents required significant numbers of officers, sergeants, detectives, and criminalists to investigate, and drained resources on East and North Precincts.
|Post Date: 2021-09-02 12:35:51||Last Update: 2021-09-02 15:49:59|
But things took an interesting turn in the Newberg School District
When the Newberg School Board voted to remove controversial political symbols from their classrooms they probably expected some resistance. They almost surely got more than they planned for.
The school board voted to remove political symbols like BLM and “gay pride” flags so that teachers and students could concentrate on school subjects. But the school board voted to remove all political flags and symbols -- although there have been no reports of any “Proud Boy” or “III%” flags ever making an appearance in Newberg schools.
The response from liberals was swift, organized and personal. Not only were marches organized, and large signs posted against the decision but such liberal icons as Alexandria Ocasio Cortez joined in condemnation of the school board
The ACLU threatened a lawsuit
and the Newberg City Council voted to censure them.
But the opponents of the school board’s decision didn’t stop there. They set out to personally destroy the people who voted to remove political propaganda from the classroom. They demanded that the offending school board members be fired from their day jobs. A Facebook group called “Equity ForNewberg” (sic) pushed to have the artwork of one school board member removed from a local business. Then they placed school board member Dave Brown in their sights.
Dave Brown serves on the Newberg School Board, but works as a coach in the Canby Schools. The “Equity ForNewberg” page asked people to contact the Canby School District and complain about Brown saying in a post, “Canby School District has strong pro-equity polices that Dave Brown is undermining in the Newberg School District.”
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But things took an interesting turn when it was learned that one of the people involved in the Facebook group attacking the Newberg School Board members was Autumn Foster. Foster is the “communications director” for… the Canby School District.
Dave Brown’s working relationship with the Canby Schools has nothing to do with his role as school board member in Newberg and there have been no reports that we could find that he has ever acted in any way that would call into question his professionalism or commitment to his job as a coach. So Foster’s involvement in this attack on another Canby employee because she disagrees with his decision to remove extremist political symbols from classrooms is startling. It must also cause the Canby School Board members to wonder how she would use her job to undermine decisions they might make.
But Foster’s politics are not a secret in Canby. During the Trump Administration Foster placed a post on a Facebook page referring to Trump with the following: “F
. This. Racist. Piece. Of. Sh
.” For some, the battle over control of public schools has crossed not only geographical lines, but the lines of decency.
|Post Date: 2021-09-01 20:49:34||Last Update: 2021-09-02 15:57:01|
Oregon State Senate will consider on September 22
Governor Kate Brown has now submitted a list of state board and commission appointments
to the Oregon Senate for confirmation.
“State board and commission members bring a diversity of backgrounds and life experiences to provide valuable insight into a wide range of issues facing state government," said Governor Brown. "Our policies, programs, and initiatives are stronger when diverse perspectives have been at the table helping to craft them. I appreciate the willingness of all these nominees to help us build a safer, stronger, and more just and equitable Oregon for all."
Included on the list are nominees for positions such as Public Employees Retirement Board, Board of Trustees for Oregon State University, State Marine Board, Teacher Standards and Practices Commission and more.
The Senate Rules Committee is scheduled to consider the nominations on September 22.
|Post Date: 2021-09-01 17:19:38||Last Update: 2021-09-01 17:37:04|
“It is clear the Republican Party cares little about the rule of law”
Oregon House Majority Leader Barbara Smith Warner (D-Portland) made a strongly-worded statement following last night’s passage of SB 8
, a Texas law that bans abortion after six weeks.
Smith Warner said, “Oregon is the only state with no limits whatsoever on abortion, because abortion is health care. What is happening in Texas with SB 8
is critical to every Oregonian, because an assault on reproductive rights anywhere is an assault on reproductive rights everywhere.
“Across the country, we are seeing attacks on basic human rights and our democracy. From banning books in schools to Jim Crow era voting laws and attempts to overthrow democratically elected governments here in Oregon and in D.C., we are up against anti-democratic forces who will stop at nothing to implement their radical, white nationalist, misogynist agenda.
As the science confirms more and more about the early stages of life, some insiders see the US Supreme Court possibly preparing to overturn the landmark case which legalized abortion. Smith Warner continued, “Despite Roe v. Wade
being settled law for almost 50 years, we continue to see ongoing attacks by the Republican Party to end abortion care. These bans disproportionately harm low-income, Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) communities and other marginalized groups who lack the resources to seek care outside the state.
“It is clear the Republican Party cares little about the rule of law, having pushed through three illegitimate Supreme Court Justices who share their radical beliefs. The Court’s failure to uphold Constitutional precedent is a clear, present and dangerous sign of what is to come. We must act now or face even more dire consequences.
|Post Date: 2021-09-01 16:52:23||Last Update: 2021-09-01 17:02:03|
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