PORTLAND, Ore.—A former senior executive and chief financial officer of Aequitas Management, LLC, and several other entities formerly owned by Aequitas, pleaded guilty today to submitting a false statement to an Aequitas creditor to obtain a $4.2 million loan for the now-defunct company.
Nelson Scott Gillis, 69, of Lake Oswego, Oregon, pleaded guilty to one count of making a false statement to a bank.
According to court documents, Aequitas created and operated investment funds that purchased trade receivables in education, health care, transportation, and other consumer credit areas. Aequitas borrowed funds from other financial institutions, including Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., to purchase these trade receivables. On or about January 12, 2015, Aequitas entered into a loan agreement with Wells Fargo to establish a $100 million line of credit. Six months later, on or about June 30, 2015, Gillis signed an amended loan agreement with Wells Fargo on Aequitas’s behalf
By early January 2016, Aequitas’s general counsel advised Gillis and other executives that the company would soon default on payments due to Private Note investors, causing an “event of default” on Aequitas’s loan agreement with Wells Fargo. Despite that advice, on or about January 15, 2016, Gillis signed and, with others, submitted to Wells Fargo an “advance notice,” requesting that Wells Fargo advance $4.2 million to Aequitas with a false certification that Aequitas was not confronting a potential event of default.
On August 11, 2020, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced that Gillis had been charged in a 34-count indictment with conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, wire fraud, bank fraud, and money laundering. Gillis was charged alongside former Aequitas CEO Robert J. Jesenik, 62, of West Linn, Oregon, and former Aequitas executives Brian K. Rice, 55, of Portland, and Andrew N. MacRitchie, 56, formerly of Palm Harbor, Florida. Jesenik, Rice, and MacRitchie are all on pre-trial release pending a five-week jury trial scheduled to begin on April 3, 2023.
Gillis faces a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison, an $8.4 million fine, and five years’ supervised release. He will be sentenced on June 27, 2023 by U.S. District Court Judge Michael H. Simon.
As part of his plea agreement, Gillis has also agreed to pay restitution as determined by the government and ordered by the court.
This case is being investigated by the FBI, IRS Criminal Investigation, and the U.S. Department of Labor Employee Benefits Security Administration. It is being prosecuted by Ryan W. Bounds, Christopher Cardani and Siddharth Dadhich, Assistant U.S. Attorneys for the District of Oregon.
May 26, 2022
Media Contact: Erica Heartquist, 503-871-8843, PHD.Communications@dhsoha.state.or.us
Federal decision ‘critical to ensuring health and well-being of mothers and their babies’
PORTLAND, Ore. – The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), has approved Oregon’s request to expand Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) coverage, known as Oregon Health Plan (OHP), to one year postpartum.
The change, approved and announced Wednesday, will allow individuals to maintain continuous OHP coverage and access medically necessary physical, oral and behavioral health services for 12 months after childbirth.
Currently, most states continue pregnancy-related Medicaid coverage for only 60 days after childbirth. The expansion of coverage was made possible by a new state plan opportunity included in the American Rescue Plan.
Medicaid covers 42% of births in the nation. A report published by the HHS Office of Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) highlights the inequity that rates in pregnancy-related deaths are two to three times higher among black non-Latino and American Indian/Alaska Native populations compared to white populations. The report further explains that one in three pregnancy-related deaths occur between one week and one year after childbirth. The extension of coverage is aimed at advancing Oregon Health Authority’s (OHA) goal of eliminating health inequities by 2030.
The postpartum period is an important time for physical recovery; addressing pregnancy spacing and family planning needs; managing chronic conditions that may have been exacerbated during pregnancy; providing breastfeeding support; and ensuring mental health.
“Providing postpartum support and care is critical to ensuring the health and well-being of mothers and their babies,” states Interim State Medicaid Director Dana Hittle.
PORTLAND, Ore.—A federal indictment was unsealed today charging a California real estate developer with using stolen identities to fraudulently obtain more than $1.5 million in loans intended to help small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Alfred E. Nevis, 52, of Arroyo Grande, California, has been charged with wire fraud, aggravated identity theft, and money laundering.
According to court documents, from April 1, 2020, through at least August 6, 2020, Nevis is alleged to have used the identities of multiple individuals known to him—including current and former employees, business associates, and their spouses—to illegally obtain Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs) administered by the Small Business Administration (SBA). The EIDL program was one of several economic relief programs originally authorized by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES). It enabled SBA to issue low-interest loans to small businesses adversely impacted by the pandemic and associated mitigation measures.
To facilitate his scheme, Nevis used the stolen identities to register straw corporations, obtain Employer Identification Numbers (EINs) from the IRS, and submit loan applications to SBA on behalf of the newly-registered corporations. In one instance, Nevis claimed a straw corporation called Isley Farms, registered in Oregon, had 12 employees and generated more than $725,000 in revenue in a 12-month period ending in January 2020.
Between April 1, 2020 and July 23, 2020, Nevis submitted at least 12 EIDL applications using the identities of at least eight individuals without their knowledge or permission. Together, these applications generated nearly $1.4 million in fraudulent loan disbursements. SBA approved one final EIDL for $150,000 in August 2020, bringing Nevis’ total fraud proceeds to more than $1.5 million. Nevis is further alleged to have laundered at least $160,000 of his ill-gotten gains.
Nevis made his initial appearance in federal court today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jolie A. Russo. He was arraigned, pleaded not guilty, and released pending a 3-day jury trial scheduled to begin on August 2.
Nevis faces a maximum sentence of 32 years in prison, fines of up to $500,000, and 3 years’ supervised release.
U.S. Attorney Scott Erik Asphaug of the District of Oregon made the announcement.
This case was investigated by the FBI with assistance from the U.S. Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) and the SBA Office of Inspector General. Assistant U.S. Attorney Ryan W. Bounds is prosecuting the case.
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act is a federal law, enacted on March 29, 2020, designed to provide emergency financial assistance to the millions of Americans who are suffering the economic effects caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Anyone with information about allegations of attempted fraud involving COVID-19 can report it by calling the Justice Department’s National Center for Disaster Fraud (NCDF) Hotline at 866-720-5721 or via the NCDF Web Complaint Form at: https://www.justice.gov/disaster-fraud/ncdf-disaster-complaint-form.
There’s something magical and alluring about boats - and such a wide variety on the market. Regardless of what’s calling you to the water and the type of boat you’re in, be sure to plan ahead, pay attention and share the water so everyone can have a fun time.
The Oregon State Marine Board invites boaters to explore the Boat Oregon Online Map, where you can find a boat ramp near you. Take a few minutes to plan ahead and check out the Marine Board’s interactive boating access map with all of the public boat ramps and data layers including local rules for boat operations. Check the weather forecast, water levels or tides, see if there are any reported obstructions, and have the right gear for the activities you’re doing. Boaters can also check the Marine Board’s website to find out what equipment is required based on the size and type of boat.
“Be sure to keep a sharp lookout by paying attention to your surroundings, continually scanning port to starboard and keeping a close eye on what’s ahead,” says Brian Paulsen, Boating Safety Program Manager for the Oregon State Marine Board. “Brush up on the rules of the road, start out slow because of debris in the water from this past winter, and whatever you do – don’t text and drive. Taking video and pictures, along with social media texting can be fun, but the operator needs to maintain focus and awareness to what’s going on around them,” says Paulsen. “The captain is responsible for the safety of everyone on board, but everyone needs to pitch in and be an active, alert crew, working together.”
High water levels in some areas this spring cover many wing dams (also known as pile dikes) on rivers and bays and are just below the surface. Paulsen adds, "Motorized boaters need to keep their distance from the shoreline up to several hundred feet out, so they don’t inadvertently hit one of the piles.” Boaters are encouraged to learn where the wing dams are located based on the waterbody where they’re boating from NOAA Charts. The navigation charts can be downloaded for free.
The Marine Board also recommends boaters play it safe by:
For more information about safe boating in Oregon, visit Boat.Oregon.gov.
On May 11, Governor Kate Brown declared July 25-July 29, 2022, Oregon Private College Week, siting that “Oregon’s private, nonprofit, independent college and universities are vital to Oregon’s goal for a more educated and skilled workforce, enriching local communities, and contributing to our state’s education attainment goals.” During Oregon Private College Week, twelve campuses will welcome hundreds of prospective students and their families.
“We invite prospective students and their families to discover best-in-class private higher education during Oregon Private College Week. Twelve institutions will throw their doors open to help students find the school that’s the right fit for them. Get all your questions answered by faculty, current students, and admissions staff,” said Brent Wilder, President of the Oregon Alliance of Independent Colleges and Universities (“The Alliance”). “Campus visits are the single-most important way for students to learn about the academic experience, financial support, and campus social opportunities. We are thrilled to welcome back students in-person for Oregon Private College Week.”
Together, the independent, nonprofit colleges and universities that comprise The Alliance offer degrees in more than 260 fields of study, including engineering, business, law, and computer science. Alliance institutions confer 32.3% of all education degrees in Oregon, 34.6% of all health profession degrees, 14.2% of all business and marketing degrees, and 11.5% of all public administration and social services degrees.
The majority of undergraduate students (64%) enrolled in Alliance member institutions finish their bachelor’s degrees in four years – the highest rate of completion in the state.
During Oregon Private College Week, prospective students and their families are invited to visit, explore, ask questions, learn about academic programs and financial aid, talk to admissions staff, and tour the campuses. College officials will also counter with facts many commonly held myths about private higher education:
Information sessions and tours will begin on host campuses at 9am and 2pm every day, Monday-Friday, July 25-July 29. For more information about Oregon Private College Week, to view a list of participating colleges, or to register, please visit www.oregonprivatecolleges.com.
The Alliance is comprised of 13 private, nonprofit, independent colleges and universities. These institutions deliver high-quality experiential learning with high-impact teaching strategies. The Alliance is the collective voice of private education in public policy advocacy. For more information, visit www.oaicu.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
On Wednesday, May 25, 2022 at approximately 8:36 PM, Oregon State Police Troopers and emergency personnel responded to a single vehicle crash on Hwy 138E near milepost 78.
Preliminary investigation revealed that a westbound black Tesla Model S, operated by Howard Berry (67) of Milwaukie, was traveling at a high rate of speed when it left the roadway and struck a power pole. Speed and alcohol use are being investigated as contributing factors to the crash.
Berry and two of his passengers, Richard Edlund (67) of Milwaukie and John Ruppert (66) of Tigard, were all transported by air ambulance with injuries. A fourth passenger, Koelby Edlund (37) of Canby, sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced deceased.
Hwy 138E was closed for approximately 30 minutes.
OSP was assisted by Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, Diamond Lake Volunteers, Air Reach, Pacific Power, And ODOT.
May 26, 2022
Media contact: Timothy Heider, 971-599-0459,
State health officials at the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) have announced a plan to distribute a package of $517 million in investments aimed at improving behavioral health services in Oregon. This includes $132 million which will flow to treatment providers starting this week.
The investments will be used to bolster the behavioral health workforce and expand treatment services. The state also will distribute funds to provide housing and other support services to people with mental health and substance use issues.
Key elements of the new grants are designed to eliminate health inequities.
The funding includes:
“We are incredibly grateful to the Legislature and to Governor Brown for providing these critical investments,” Steve Allen, OHA’s behavioral health director said.
“These resources are intended to provide immediate support to behavioral health workers and give programs a sustainable base of funding they can count on to make behavioral health treatment more accessible and equitable in Oregon.”
OHA is issuing grants to 159 organizations across the state to recruit and retain employees for behavioral health service providers. These funds are beginning to be distributed directly to treatment programs this week. The funds were allocated by the Legislature through House Bill 4004 to supplement staffing losses exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The median award is approximately $334,000.
Providers must use at least 75 percent of the funding for wages, benefits and bonuses and the remainder for non-compensatory forms of retention or recruitment. To ensure accountability and that these dollars are spent on bolstering the behavioral health workforce, OHA will get reports about how and where these dollars will be spent. Lean more about the workforce stability grants.
“Rarely does an email bring tears, but this one did,” said Janice Garceau, behavioral health director for Deschutes County Health Services in response to receiving notification of the workforce investments for programs in her county. “This will make a meaningful difference.”
OHA is also proposing increasing provider payment rates to better coordinate access to care, incentivize culturally and linguistically specific services, invest in workforce diversity and support staff recruitment. The legislature allocated $42.5 million last year, which is expected to bring approximately $112 million in matching federal Medicaid funds.
The $155 million in rate increases will not only increase funding for treatment programs, it will also increase access for people who need mental health and substance use treatment. In total, this increase would put an extra $109 per Medicaid member into the behavioral health system.
Under the proposed fee-for-service rate increases for providers:
OHA is working on getting federal approval for these increases, and providers that bill OHA directly through Medicaid on a fee-for- service basis this summer.
These fee-for-service increased payments will be retroactive to July 1, 2022. In addition to the fee-for-service increases, OHA will be providing increases to coordinated care organizations that should be passed along to behavioral health providers beginning Jan. 1, 2023.
The funding for supportive housing and other residential options includes $100 million in direct awards to Oregon’s counties which will be issued by the end of summer. In addition, a competitive grant program totaling $112 million will expand housing and residential services for mental health treatment and substance use disorders.
These grants follow two earlier rounds of funding.
In the fall of 2021, OHA awarded $5 million in planning grants to 100 community organizations and four Tribes. In addition. OHA awarded $10 million earlier in 2022 to projects that could expand residential treatment capacity in the short-term, resulting in the availability of 70 additional beds.
The $112 million grant program will support longer-term projects, including new construction and renovation to further expand licensed residential and supportive housing services.
The remaining $20 million has specifically been identified to support Oregon’s federally recognized Tribes for funding housing and residential treatment projects. Qualifying programs will receive awards in late summer and funding would continue through spring 2023.
The county funding will be used to develop housing options, expand residential treatment capacity and increase access to low and no-barrier shelter options.
The goal of the competitive grants is to create substantially more capacity in Oregon’s continuum of community-based residential and housing services for people with behavioral health needs, offering culturally responsive, person-centered programming.
This will ensure that people are supported in settings that best meet their needs and will create more equitable and effective housing alternatives for people with serious and persistent mental illness, requiring a higher standard of care.
These investments are separate from, and in addition to, the Measure 110 grants that are currently being awarded to Behavioral Health Resource Networks (BHRNs) around the state to expand substance use treatment.
Released by: Deputy Donny Patterson - Assistant Search and Rescue Coordinator
Date/time: 5/25/22 at 5:06 PM
Location: Forest Service Road 370 / Forest Service Road 380 - Near Broken Top
Rescued Subject: 56-year-old male from Switzerland
On 05-25-22 at about 5:06 PM, Deschutes County 911 Dispatch Center received a 911 call from a lost mountain bike rider near Broken Top. The rider reported encountering a mountain lion while riding his bike on Forest Service Road 370. The rider left the trail (that was covered in deep soft snow) to avoid the cat, he became disoriented, and was unable to reacquire the trail. The rider requested the assistance of the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office Search and Rescue team as he was exhausted, and did not feel he could find his way back out to the trail.
Two Search and Rescue volunteers responded to the request and deployed to the area in a tracked ARGO. The volunteers drove up to the area and located the subject who was unharmed at approximately 7:49 PM. The subject was then provided a ride out of the area, though in the process of this rescue the ARGO became stuck in deep soft snow and could not be winched out.
An additional SAR page was sent out for a snowmobile team to assist with this rescue. Three additional SAR team volunteers responded to this page. Snowmobiles were then transported to Todd Lake and they deployed shortly after their arrival towards the other SAR team members. After reaching the ARGO team both teams worked diligently to free the stuck ARGO.
At approximately 2:00 AM, both SAR teams arrived back to their vehicles with the lost subject and they transported him to his vehicle, which was parked at the Cascade Lakes Visitor Center.
The Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office is a full service agency that oversees the adult jail, provides patrol, criminal investigations, civil process and search and rescue operations. Special units include SWAT, Marine Patrol, ATV Patrol, Forest Patrol, along with five K9 teams. Founded in 1916 and today led by your duly elected Sheriff L. Shane Nelson, the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office serves over 200,000 residents in Deschutes County. The agency has 259 authorized and funded personnel, which includes 191 sworn employees who provide services to the 3,055 square miles of Deschutes County.
May 26, 2022
Contact: Jonathan Modie, 971-246-9139, PHD.Communications@dhsoha.state.or.us
PORTLAND, Ore. – Oregon Health Authority’s Oregon Psilocybin Services Program has posted advice it received from the Oregon Department of Justice regarding licensure and regulatory requirements for religious/entheogenic psilocybin practitioners.
The advice is available at oregon.gov/psilocybin, under the Resources column, “Legal Memorandum” tab.
The Oregon Psilocybin Advisory Board is comprised of volunteer members who are appointed by the Governor. The Board provides recommendations to OPS related to the implementation of Measure 109, the Oregon Psilocybin Services Act. All Board meetings and subcommittee meetings are open to the public and information is posted on the Oregon Psilocybin Services (OPS) website: www.oregon.gov/psilocybin.
The religious/entheogenic practitioner proposal that the Board discussed today proposes a separate category of privileges for religious/entheogenic practitioners and holds religious/entheogenic practitioners to a lessor standard of licensure or regulation by OHA.
For the latest updates, subscribe to the distribution list at oregon.gov/psilocybin.
Everyone has a right to know about and use Oregon Health Authority (OHA) programs and services. OHA provides free help. Some examples of the free help OHA can provide are:
If you need help or have questions, please contact the Oregon Psilocybin Services team at 971-341-1713, 711 TTY, or OHA.Psilocybin@dhsoha.state.gov.
PORTLAND, Ore.—On May 25, 2022, a Hillsboro, Oregon man was sentenced to federal prison for leading a Hillsboro area methamphetamine distribution cell that was part of a conspiracy to traffic large quantities of methamphetamine, heroin, and fentanyl from Mexico for resale in Oregon and Washington State.
John Armas, 44, was sentenced to 90 months in federal prison and five years’ supervised release.
According to court documents, Armas’ Hillsboro methamphetamine distribution cell was part of a larger drug trafficking network led by Victor Alvarez Farfan, 50, of Oregon City, Oregon. Armas would receive pounds of methamphetamine at his residence from Farfan or associates of Farfan and, in turn, transfer it to various co-conspirators for storage or further distribution. From May 2018 through October 2018, Armas planned and coordinated the transfer and distribution of more than 5 kilograms of methamphetamine.
On October 17, 2018, a federal grand jury in Portland returned a nine-count indictment charging Armas, Farfan, and 20 co-defendants with conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute and distribute controlled substances; use of a communication facility, including cellular telephones, in the commission of a controlled substances felony; maintaining drug-involved premises to manufacture and distribute controlled substances; interstate distribution of drug proceeds and money laundering.
On October 24, 2018, a coordinated law enforcement operation led by the FBI with assistance from Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Westside Interagency Narcotics (WIN) Task Force and the Clackamas County Interagency Task Force (CCITF) resulted in the arrest of Armas, Farfan and many of their co-defendants. As part of the operation, investigators searched Armas’ Hillsboro residence and seized a handgun and drug packaging material.
On January 13, 2020, Armas pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute methamphetamine. On November 23, 2021, Farfan became the last of 23 co-defendants charged in the conspiracy to plead guilty. On March 4, 2022, Farfan was sentenced to 180 months in federal prison and five years’ supervised release.
This case was prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Oregon and is the result of a joint investigation by FBI, HSI, WIN, and CCITF. Forfeiture was litigated by the U.S. Attorney’s Office Asset Recovery and Money Laundering Division.
WIN includes representatives from the Washington County Sheriff's Office, Beaverton Police Department, Hillsboro Police Department, Tigard Police Department, Oregon National Guard Counterdrug Program, and FBI. CCITF includes representatives from Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office, Canby Police Department, Oregon State Police, HSI, and FBI.
This case is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) Strike Force Initiative, which provides for the establishment of permanent multi-agency task force teams that work side-by-side in the same location. This co-located model enables agents from different agencies to collaborate on intelligence-driven, multi-jurisdictional operations to disrupt and dismantle the most significant drug traffickers, money launderers, gangs, and transnational criminal organizations.
SALEM, Oregon –
Oregon Heritage, a division of Oregon Parks and Recreation Department, awarded 28 matching grants worth $5,000,000 to Oregon Main Street Network organizations across the state for building projects that encourage economic revitalization. Projects range from façade improvement to basic facilities and housing with awards ranging from $23,850-$200,000.
The department funded applications that best conveyed the ability to stimulate private investment and local economic development, best fit within the community’s long-range plan for downtown vitality, and community need.
Funded projects include:
Other communities awarded grants include Albany, Moro, Stayton, Gold Beach, Oregon City, and Monmouth.
The grant program was created during the 2015 legislative session, and placed with the Oregon State Historic Preservation Office. The legislation established a permanent fund for the Oregon Main Street Revitalization Grant, and provided an initial infusion of funds from the sale of lottery bonds. The legislature included the Oregon Main Street Revitalization Grant in the lottery bond package approved in 2021. An additional grant round will occur in 2023. The funds must be used to award grants to participating Oregon Main Street Network organizations to acquire, rehabilitate or construct buildings to facilitate community revitalization. The program also requires that at least 50 percent of the funds go to rural communities as defined in the bill.
To learn more about the Oregon Main Street Revitalization Grant or the Oregon Main Street Network, visit www.oregonheritage.org or contact Kuri Gill at email@example.com">Kuri.firstname.lastname@example.org or 503-986-0685.
On May 25, 2022, at approximately 08:00 AM, Deputies with the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office responded to an address on Weaver Road in Myrtle Creek to investigate a domestic violence complaint.
Upon arrival the suspect, Spencer Cassanova Heckathorne (60), had fled the scene. Probable cause was established to arrest Heckathorne for the crimes of Menacing and Recklessly Endangering. Shortly after 10:00 AM, DCSO Deputies and officers from the Myrtle Creek Police Department located Heckathorne on Weaver Road near his residence. Heckathorne rammed two deputies in their vehicles before crashing into a ditch. After exiting his vehicle Heckathorne remained uncooperative and engaged a uniformed Deputy. The Deputy fired his duty weapon and Heckathorne was struck one time. Deputies quickly began rendering aid to Heckathorne who was pronounced deceased at the scene.
OSP Major Crimes Detectives from the Springfield and Roseburg Area Commands responded to assist Douglas County Major Crimes Team and is leading the investigation into the Officer Involved Shooting Incident. The Douglas County Major Crimes team is comprised of members from the Roseburg Police Department, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, the Douglas County District Attorney’s Office and the Oregon State Police.
Additional details regarding the investigation will be made available through the Douglas County District Attorney’s Office.
An Oregon Department of Corrections (DOC) adult in custody, Neal Allen Burch, passed away May 25, 2022. He was incarcerated at Deer Ridge Correctional Institution (EOCI) in Madras and passed away at the facility. As with all in-custody deaths, the Oregon State Police have been notified, and the State Medical Examiner will determine cause of death.
Neal Allen Burch entered DOC custody on January 25, 2018, from Grant County. His earliest release date was September 8, 2024. Burch was 44 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 approximately 12,000 men and women who are incarcerated in 12 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 750 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 and Oregon’s newest prison.
Salem, OR – Northwest Digital Heritage, a collaboration between the Oregon Heritage Commission, State Library of Oregon, and Washington State Library, is celebrating a year since it’s launch in May of 2021.
Northwest Digital Heritage is a collaborative, regional effort to help support and increase access to digital collections from libraries and cultural heritage institutions throughout Oregon and Washington. Since its official launch in late May 2021 – and despite a myriad of challenges during the pandemic – the project has met some significant milestones during its initial year, including:
Over the next two years, the project plans to bring even more organizations and collections across the Northwest region into the fold, and both the Oregon Heritage Commission and the State Library of Oregon are very excited to bring new funding opportunities, a centralized digital repository, and in-person digitization support to Oregon libraries and organizations.
The project partners are especially looking forward to finding tools and pathways for small heritage organizations to participate and increase access to the unique collections across the region. The Oregon Heritage Commission’s role in this partnership is to serve as a liaison with small heritage organizations, including museum, libraries, genealogical societies, etc. in Oregon and provide grants, technical assistance, and solutions for getting their cultural heritage materials digitized and accessible online. This is a key project of the Oregon Heritage Commission as it addresses all four goals of the 2020-2025 Oregon Heritage Plan.
The Heritage Commission is comprised of nine people representing Oregon's heritage and geographical diversity who have been appointed by the Governor. There are nine advisory representatives from state agencies and statewide organizations. The mission of the Oregon Heritage Commission is to secure, sustain, and enhance Oregon's heritage by ensuring coordination of heritage initiatives by public and private organizations; advocacy on its behalf; education of the public about its extent and value; and promotion and celebration of its diversity. For more information visit www.oregonheritage.org or contact coordinator Katie Henry at (503) 877-8834 or email@example.com">firstname.lastname@example.org.
To learn more about Northwest Digital Heritage, please visit northwestdigitalheritage.org.
The Governor’s Commission on the Law Enforcement Medal of Honor will hold a teleconference meeting on June 1, 2022, at 11:00 a.m. at the Department of Public Safety Standards and Training (DPSST or Department) located at 4190 Aumsville Hwy SE, Salem, Oregon. For further information, please contact Suzy Herring at (503) 378-2427 or via email at email@example.com">firstname.lastname@example.org.
1. Minutes for August 23, 2021, Meeting
2. Proposed Rule Changes for Oregon Administrative Rule (OAR) 259-008-0100 and OAR 259-090-0010
Review and Amendment of the Rules Adopted by the Commission
3. Medal of Honor Application Discussion
Presented by Shelby Alexander
4. Chair and Vice Chair Elections
Presented by Suzy Herring
5. Next meeting – TBA
This is a public meeting, subject to public meeting law, and will be digitally recorded.
On May 23, 2022, at approximately 7:25 P.M., law enforcement received a call from an individual reporting a homicide. Oregon State Police Troopers along with Union County Sheriff Deputies responded to a residence in unincorporated Union County.
Upon arriving on the scene, law enforcement found an adult female deceased. A suspect was taken into custody without incident. The Union County Major Crime Team was activated with the OSP Criminal Division taking the lead role.
The investigation is on-going, and any further releases will be done through the Union County District Attorney’s Office.
May 25, 2022
What: A public meeting of the Oregon Health Policy Board’s Behavioral Health Committee
Agenda: Agenda will be posted to the website prior to the meeting.
When: June 6, 2022, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Join by phone: 669-254-5252
Zoom Meeting ID: 161 689 7835
Zoom Passcode: 413375
Purpose: In 2021, the Oregon State Legislature passed House Bill (HB) 2086, which included multiple provisions and called for the establishment of the Behavioral Health Committee of the Oregon Health Policy Board. The committee’s purpose is to increase the quality of behavioral health services and transform Oregon’s behavioral health system through improved outcomes, metrics, and incentives. The committee will direct this work for the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) and will be supported by staff from OHA’s Office of Behavioral Health Services
The Behavioral Health Committee will use a health equity lens. It will center the voices of those with lived experience, community members impacted by health inequities, and members of the community with behavioral healthcare knowledge.
Read more about the Behavioral Health Committee.
Everyone has a right to know about and use Oregon Health Authority (OHA) programs and services. OHA provides free help. Some examples of the free help OHA can provide:
MEDFORD, Ore.—On May 24, 2022, a Medford man with a long criminal history, including multiple convictions for strangulation and assault, was sentenced to federal prison for illegally possessing a firearm as a convicted felon.
James Calvin Patterson, 46, was sentenced to 15 years in federal prison and five years’ supervised release. Patterson’s sentence will run concurrently to a 45-month sentence recently imposed for a drug conviction in Jackson County Circuit Court.
According to court documents, in the early morning hours of March 30, 2019, two officers from the Medford Police Department observed a white compact car stopping in the middle of the road to pick up a passenger. Suspecting possible drug activity, the officers initiated a traffic stop. As one officer approached the vehicle, the front passenger, Patterson, began moving his hands around and near his midsection and waistband. Concerned Patterson was armed, the officer asked him to step out of the vehicle. Patterson initially did not move, but then quickly reached toward his waist band. Eventually Patterson excited the vehicle and, after initially complying with some of the officer’s commands, attempted to flee on foot.
Before long, the officer regained control of Patterson and forced him to the ground. As the officer tried to handcuff him, Patterson continued reaching for this waistband. After a struggle, officers successfully handcuffed Patterson. When they stood him up, a loaded pistol fell from his waistband.
Shortly after his arrest, Patterson made multiple recorded jail phone calls on which he admitted to possessing the firearm, acknowledged he was facing 15 years in prison, and stating he would have shot the officer if he had the chance.
On May 16, 2019, Patterson was charged by criminal complaint with illegally possessing a firearm as a convicted felon. Later, on June 5, 2019, a federal grand jury in Medford indicted Patterson on the same charge. On December 9, 2021, he pleaded guilty.
U.S. Attorney Scott Erik Asphaug of the District of Oregon made the announcement.
This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) with assistance from the Medford Police Department. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Marco A. Boccato of the District of Oregon.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN). PSN is the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.
Bend, OR – Tuesday, May 24, 2022 – Oregon Community Foundation (OCF) announced today that the Climate Change & Health Habitats Collective Giving Group (CC&HH), a group of climate-oriented donors, has now made a total of 37 grants to 21 climate solutions and environmental justice organizations amounting to $532,105 since 2017. The five-year milestone comes as the group awards 16 organizations grants totaling $216,500 this year. This funding supports climate action work to ensure that Oregonians, including communities of color and rural communities, can live and thrive in our changing climate.
“Oregon Community Foundation is honored to support the expansion and growth of the Climate Change & Healthy Habitats Collective Giving Group as they continue to learn, grow and invest together to address Oregon’s changing climate and preserve land and water in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest,” said Carlos Garcia, Program Officer, Environment, Oregon Community Foundation. “We’re grateful to the donors, organizations, and communities that are working together for the benefit of current and future Oregonians.”
Increasingly, OCF donors have expressed urgency to address the changing climate impact through a rapid and collaborative response in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest. This growing group of OCF donors regularly talk with and learn from nonprofit and community leaders throughout Oregon and the Pacific Northwest.
“The relationships and learning that have transpired over these years, informed by experts from across the state and Pacific Northwest, have resulted in robust and strategic funding for so many important climate-focused and environmental justice organizations,” said Anne George, Senior Donor Relations Officer, Oregon Community Foundation.
Following is a small snapshot of some of the organizations that the Climate Change & Healthy Habitats Collective Giving Group is supporting this year via Oregon Community Foundation (a complete list can be found in OCF’s online Press Room):
Beyond Toxics $15,000
For work to ensure that communities have equitable access to healthy food, clean air, and clear drinking water, and for underserved communities to be included in the decision-making processes impacting their well-being. Working primarily in the Willamette Valley and Rogue Valley, Beyond Toxics supports working class, rural communities, and communities of color striving for environmental health.
“Beyond Toxics is dedicated to successfully organizing in historically disadvantaged communities to build out action on environmental and climate hazards,” said Lisa Arkin, Executive Director, Beyond Toxics. “With Climate Change & Healthy Habitat support via OCF, our vision for equitable access to healthy air, a stable climate and resilient neighborhoods is more attainable.”
To help shape state climate action by using research, communication, and community outreach. Climate Solutions works in partnership with businesses, communities, labor unions, and environmental and public health organizations.
“In recent years, Oregon has passed nationally significant climate policies and made investments in solutions that place us at the forefront of climate commitments. It is now the job of groups like Climate Solutions to make progress on the ground to cut carbon pollution, help create good paying jobs, and address equity,” said Gregg Small, Executive Director, Climate Solutions. “That means scaling up solutions such as installing more electric vehicle charging stations, getting highly efficient heat pumps into low-income housing, and increasing the number of electric buses taking our children to school.”
A complete list of 2021-2022 CC&HH grants can be found in OCF’s online Press Room. Since the group was founded, membership has expanded from 8 funds represented by 11 people to 28 funds represented by over 45 people.
“I am thrilled to be involved and engaged with Oregon Community Foundation’s Climate Change & Healthy Habitats Collective Giving Group,” said Megan Colwell, Portland community member and OCF donor. “I appreciate the mix of expertise, unique perspectives and ultimately the collaboration that occurs in our funding decisions to support work to address climate change and protect and restore healthy ecosystems.”
The CC&HH Collective Giving Group’s shared learning has resulted in investments in climate change action, transportation electrification, and natural climate solutions, including the protection of natural spaces such as landscapes and wetlands to keep greenhouse gases out of the atmosphere.
“OCF looks forward to continuing to support this donor-driven effort to help them make an impact regarding climate action in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest,” continued Anne George. “We are excited to work with new as well as returning members in the coming months as we begin our next grantmaking cycle.”
About Climate Change & Healthy Habitats Collective Giving Group through OCF
Through OCF, this diverse donor group with expertise in business, academia, medicine, law, agriculture, and forestry has created a vehicle to meet, learn, plan, and recommend grants that support efforts to address climate change and protect healthy ecosystems. OCF donor members learn from and engage with nonprofits across the region addressing climate change and recommend grants to further those efforts. To learn more about and support the work of the Climate Change & Healthy Habitats Collective Giving Group through Oregon Community Foundation, please visit: Climate Change & Healthy Habitats Collective Giving Group » Oregon Community Foundation (oregoncf.org).
For questions or more information about joining the CC&HH donor giving group, please contact Anne George, Senior Donor Relations Officer, Oregon Community Foundation, via email at: email@example.com">firstname.lastname@example.org
About Oregon Community Foundation
Oregon Community Foundation (OCF) works with donors and volunteers to award grants and scholarships to every county in Oregon. From 2020 to 2021, OCF distributed more than $560 million, supporting more than 4,000 nonprofits and 6,000 students. With OCF, individuals, families, businesses, and organizations create charitable funds that meet the needs of diverse communities statewide. Since its founding in 1973, OCF has distributed more than $2 billion toward advancing its mission to improve lives for all Oregonians. For more information, please visit: oregoncf.org.
NOTE: Full list of grantees (16) is attached for reference. We also have this web landing page available to view/share: https://oregoncf.org/news/donor-giving-group-invests-in-oregon-and-pacific-northwest-climate-action-work/
Bend Fire Department responded to a report of a natural gas smell at the Bend Town Center along 3rd Street at NE Franklin. An odor was detected inside and outside of several suites, alerting the occupants to call 911 and evacuate. When crews arrived they found much of the complex, including Ace Hardware and Safeway, evacuating. Bend Police assisted with the evacuation of the approximately 100+ occupants of the 7 businesses affected. Traffic was stopped from entering the parking lot throughout the incident, Bend Public Works set up barriers to assist with that.
Fire crews worked with CNG and PPL crews to identify the source of the smell. After searching all portions of the complex and finding no readings of gas inside the building the occupants were allowed to return to the building. The building was fully evacuated for about an hour while crews searched the building. The source of the smell was narrowed due to a malfunctioning HVAC unit on the roof above the UPS Store. The property managers and HVAC techs are working on making repairs to the unit.
Bend Fire Department, in conjunction with the Central Oregon Fire Chiefs Association (COFCA), announces the date of closing of open debris burning. Starting June 1st, debris will be closed for fire season. Outdoor debris burning in the city limits of Bend is closed year-round by City of Bend Ordinance.
Backyard fires which include warming fires, campfires and cooking fires are typically allowed year-round in the Bend area, when used within the guidelines set forth in the Bend Fire Department Burning Regulations. Additional restrictions on campfires can be placed during the hottest parts of summer to help reduce the risk of fire further. Check the restrictions every time you burn by calling our burn information line at 541-322-6335.
Burn Regulations available online at www.bendoregon.gov/burninginfo
As a reminder for everyone living in Central Oregon, be sure your home has good defensible space around it to help protect your home from the threat of wildfire. More information about creating defensible space and preparing for the upcoming fire season can be found on our website at www.ownyourzonebend.org.
As a reminder to all Central Oregon residents, be advised that regulations may vary between fire protection jurisdictions. Please contact your local, state or federal fire agency for specific requirements and closures.
Correction on Spelling of Last Name
The correct spelling is: Kawano, Marcus Ryan
Identification of Deceased Subject
Released by: Sergeant Jayson Janes
Date: May 24, 2022
Deceased: Kwano, Marcus Ryan, 44 year old male, no permanent address
DCSO has been able to confirm the identity of the deceased male subject as Marcus Ryan Kwano.
End of Update
Released by: Sergeant Jayson Janes
Date: May 23, 2022
On May 21, 2022 at approximately 12:47 PM, deputies from the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched to a deceased male, who had been located by a mushroom hunter. This location was off of Highway 242 near the snow gate.
Deputies arrived on scene and began conducting a death investigation. Detectives and a Deputy Medical Examiner from the Deschutes County Medical Examiner’s Office arrived on scene to assist in the investigation. The investigation found no evidence of foul play.
At this time DCSO is still waiting for confirmation on the subject’s identity. Family notifications will be made after his identity is confirmed.
The Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office is a full service agency that oversees the adult jail, provides patrol, criminal investigations, civil process and search and rescue operations. Special units include SWAT, Marine Patrol, ATV Patrol, Forest Patrol, along with six K9 teams. Founded in 1916 and today led by your duly elected Sheriff L. Shane Nelson, the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office serves over 200,000 residents in Deschutes County. The agency has 267 authorized and funded personnel, which includes 193 sworn employees who provide services to the 3,055 square miles of Deschutes County.
SALEM, Oregon – The Oregon Heritage Commission will meet June 6 via zoom. The agenda includes reviewing museum grant recommendations, information from Department of Land Conservation and Development on Goal 5 Cultural Areas Rulemaking, a presentation of preliminary results of an Economic Impact Study of heritage activities in Oregon, and review of a Heritage Tradition application. To register for the virtual meeting visit here.
There is an appointed position on the Oregon Heritage Commission that will be expiring June 30. Requests for appointment are now being accepted.
The Heritage Commission’s nine members represent a diversity of cultural, geographic, and institutional interests. The Commission is the primary agency for coordination of heritage activities in the state. This includes carrying out the Oregon Heritage Plan, increasing efficiency and avoiding duplication among interest groups, developing plans for coordination among agencies and organizations, encouraging tourism related to heritage resources, and coordinating statewide anniversary celebrations.
All Oregon residents are encouraged to apply for appointment but we are particularly seeking applications from those living in the Southern Oregon region. The Heritage Commission is especially seeking members with knowledge and experience related to community institutions, heritage tourism, or education/higher education, and who have experience working with diverse cultural groups.
The group meets four-six times per year in changing locations around the state and will offer virtual options to attend meetings. Commissioners are also asked to occasionally participate in meetings or events in their regions and work on other projects outside of meeting time. Appointed Commissioners are reimbursed for their travel and related expenses while conducting official commission business.
To request appointment, go to Gov. Kate Brown’s Boards and Commissions webpage at https://www.oregon.gov/gov/Pages/board-list.aspx.
PORTLAND, Ore.—A federal grand jury in Portland has returned a superseding indictment charging a Vancouver, Washington man for his role in a fentanyl distribution scheme that led to the overdose death of a Portland teenager.
Manuel Antonio Souza Espinoza, 24, has been charged with conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute fentanyl, resulting in death; possession with intent to distribute fentanyl; and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.
“Our community is flooded with counterfeit prescription pills that can take an innocent victim’s life in the blink of an eye. Sadly, taking a pill to get high does not have the same stigma or barrier to entry for many unwitting victims, leading to tragic results,” said Scott Erik Asphaug, U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon. “We urge everyone, regardless of age, to talk with their friends and loved ones about the risks of taking pills not prescribed to them by a medical professional. Please help to protect those closest to you while we in law enforcement continue to battle this urgent public health and safety crisis.”
“HSI, along with our law enforcement partners, pursue those fueling the opioid epidemic in this region which is claiming the lives of so many young victims,” said Special Agent in Charge (SAC) Robert Hammer, who oversees Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) operations in the Pacific Northwest. “This heartbreaking story is a constant reminder to the public that the only safe medications are ones prescribed by a trusted medical professional and dispensed by a licensed pharmacist.”
“All overdose cases are tragic, but this one involving a person so young was heartbreaking, and our sympathies are extended to his loved ones,” said Chief Chuck Lovell. “I’m grateful for the ongoing and important work of the members of PPB’s Narcotics and Organized Crime Unit, investigative assistance from the Clackamas County Interagency Task Force, and our federal partners. Any time an arrest like this is made, our city gets a little bit safer. However, addressing this issue is going to take more than law enforcement. We need the community to recognize this problem and help us promote awareness that these fentanyl pills and powder are lethal and are a significant threat to our community.”
According to court documents, the investigation that ultimately led to Espinoza’s arrest began after the tragic overdose death of a Portland teenager who, in March 2022, ingested a counterfeit “M30” Oxycodone pill manufactured with fentanyl. The investigation revealed that Espinoza—a known, high-volume Portland area drug dealer—was the third-level supplier of the counterfeit pills. On March 31, 2022, using a confidential informant, investigators arranged a controlled purchase of 1,000 pills from Espinoza. When Espinoza arrived at the agreed upon location, he was immediately arrested. Investigators located the 1,000 pills in his vehicle along with a loaded .40 caliber handgun with extended magazine.
On March 31, 2022, Espinoza was charged by criminal complaint with possession with intent to distribute fentanyl and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime. Later, on April 21, 2022, a federal grand jury in Portland indicted him on the same charges.
Espinoza made his initial appearance in federal court today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jolie A. Russo. He was arraigned, pleaded not guilty, and ordered detained pending further court proceedings.
If convicted, Espinoza faces a maximum sentence of life in federal prison.
U.S. Attorney Asphaug, Special Agent in Charge Hammer, and Chief Lovell made the announcement.
This case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations, the Portland Police Bureau, and the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office with assistance from the Clackamas County Inter-agency Task Force. Assistant U.S. Attorney Scott M. Kerin is prosecuting the case.
An indictment is only an accusation of a crime, and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
Opioid abuse affects communities across the nation. Provisional data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicate that there were more than 100,000 drug overdoses in the U.S. during the 12-month period ending April 2021, an increase of nearly 29% from the previous 12-month period. Synthetic opioids (primarily fentanyl) accounted for more than three quarters of these deaths. Drug overdose continues to be the leading cause of injury or death in the U.S.
Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid 80 to 100 times more powerful than morphine and 30 to 50 times more powerful than heroin. A 3-milligram dose of fentanyl—a few grains of the substance—is enough to kill an average adult male. The availability of illicit fentanyl in Oregon has caused a dramatic increase in overdose deaths throughout the state.
If you or someone you know is in immediate danger, please call 911.
If you or someone you know suffers from addiction, please call the Lines for Life substance abuse helpline at 1-800-923-4357 or visit www.linesforlife.org. Phone support is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can also text “RecoveryNow” to 839863 between 8am and 11pm Pacific Time daily.
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.
May 24, 2022
PORTLAND, Ore. – Oregon Health Authority (OHA) is warning the people of Oregon to be on the lookout for Jif brand peanut butter that may be contaminated with Salmonella bacteria.
J.M. Smucker Co., the parent company for the peanut butter brand, issued a voluntary recall on Friday. The Food and Drug Administration, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and local partners are investigating this outbreak.
The recalled peanut butter was distributed in retail stores and other outlets throughout the country. It includes creamy, crunchy and natural varieties.
Jif peanut butter was included in food boxes distributed through OHA’s food box program. OHA has investigated further and determined that the recall lot does include the Jif peanut butter that was distributed in the food boxes. This only impacts the peanut butter product inside the food box which can be exchanged for a replacement or refunded.
Starting today, staff with the Oregon Health Authority is visiting all OHA food hubs and inspecting respective food boxes in order to substitute any recall product for new. This work will require the remainder of this week to accomplish and all food hubs are being notified this evening. All warehoused Jif products that are waiting to be distributed have been thoroughly inspected and replaced.
To see if your jar of Jif peanut butter is being recalled, check the lot number that is printed below the "Best if Used by" date on the label.
Products with lot codes 1274425 – 2140425, with the digits 425 in the 5th-7th position, are being recalled. This information is printed on the back label of the jar.
Photo courtesy: Food and Drug Administration
A list of recalled products and their numbers can also be seen on the FDA's website. If you happen to have a jar included in the recall, you should throw it away immediately. After throwing the peanut butter out, OHA recommends washing and sanitizing any surfaces or containers that might have come into contact with the peanut butter.
For many infected people, symptoms appear 12 to 72 hours after contact and often include diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps. Most people who are infected recover within four to seven days and do not need any treatment. More serious and severe cases can occur, though, so OHA recommends contacting your health care provider if you believe you have been infected.
Currently, there are 14 cases across 12 states, two hospitalizations, no deaths and no cases in Oregon.
OHA recommends that all peanut butter distributed from April 15 through May 23 be immediately thrown away or exchanged at a retail store.
Product can also be reimbursed directly by Jif by following their instructions at: https://jms-s3-mkt-consumer-p-pmc6.s3.us-east-2.amazonaws.com/recall.html.
Consumers who have questions or would like to report adverse reactions should visit www.jif.com/contact-us or call 800-828-9980 Monday through Friday, 8 AM to 5 PM ET.
Please share this information with your community members and partners who may have received a food box.
Update on pathological examination.
The Oregon State Police Fish & Wildlife Division has closed its investigation into the death of OR 106.
On January 8th, 2022, Fish & Wildlife Division Troopers responded to the location of a deceased, collared wolf on Parsnip Creek Road, in Wallowa County, OR. Troopers located OR 106, a lone female wolf dispersed from the Chesnimnus Pack. Initial observations suggested the wolf died as the result of gunshot wounds.
Based upon these observations, OR 106 was transported to the United States Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) Forensic Lab in Ashland, OR. for pathological examination. According to the veterinary examination report, which was received in early March, OR 106 died as a result of blunt force trauma to the chest and pelvic area. The report indicated that the associated trauma was most consistent with a vehicle collision, though other wounds were suspicious of intraspecific fight wounds. A previous gunshot injury to the wolf’s left hind leg was also noted, and though not completely healed, it didn’t appear to be debilitating and was not associated with the cause of death.
The Oregon State Police Fish & Wildlife Division would like to thank the USFWS Forensics Lab for their diligent efforts with the pathological examination, and their continued support.
On January 8, 2022, at 10:36 A.M. a concerned citizen reported to the Oregon State Police and ODFW personnel of finding a collared deceased wolf on Parsnip Creek RD in Wallowa County, approximately 6 miles southeast of Wallowa, OR. OSP Troopers and ODFW personnel responded to the area and located a deceased collared wolf. The initial investigation revealed that the wolf likely died as a result of being shot. The wolf, OR 106, was a two-year-old collared female. OR 106 was a lone wolf that dispersed from the Chesnimnus Pack.
OSP is urging anyone with information regarding this case to call the Oregon State Police Tip-line at 1-800-452-7888, OSP (677), or email at TIP@state.or.us. Reference case # SP22006179.
Report Wildlife and Habitat Law Violators
The Oregon Hunters Association TIP reward offers preference points or cash rewards for information leading to an arrest or issuance of a citation for the unlawful take/possession or waste of Bighorn Sheep, Rocky Mountain Goat, Moose, Elk, Deer, Antelope, Bear, Cougar, Wolf, Upland Birds, Waterfowl, Furbearers, Game Fish and Shellfish. Cash rewards can also be awarded for turning in people who destroy habitat, illegally obtain licenses/tags, and for the unlawful lending/borrowing of big game tags.
PREFERENCE POINT REWARDS:
5 Points-Mountain Sheep
5 Points-Mountain Goat
$1,000 Mountain Sheep, Mountain Goat and Moose
$500 Elk, Deer, and Antelope
$300 Bear, Cougar, and Wolf
$300 Habitat Destruction
$100 Upland Birds and Waterfowl
$100 Game Fish and Shellfish
May 24, 2022
Media contacts: Jonathan Modie, OHA, 971-246-9139, PHD.Communications@dhsoha.state.or.us
Final orders issued to Encompass Health, Post Acute Medical, LLC
PORTLAND, Ore. — Oregon Health Authority (OHA) has issued final orders approving certificates of need for inpatient rehabilitation facilities proposed by two companies: Encompass Health Corp. and Post Acute Medical, LLC.
Both companies filed certificate of need applications in late 2018 to build freestanding 50-bed inpatient rehabilitation hospitals. The Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital of Oregon would be located at Northeast Belknap Court in Hillsboro, and Post Acute Medical’s hospital would be at 13333 SW 68th Parkway in Tigard.
Encompass Health is headquartered in Birmingham, Ala., and Post Acute Medical, LLC is based in Enola, Pa.
OHA’s Certificate of Need (CN) Program issued draft recommendations in January 2020 proposing to approve both companies’ applications and issued proposed decisions for approval in March 2020. With the final orders for both sites, both companies are authorized to move forward with construction of their hospitals.
Inpatient rehabilitation facilities (IRFs) provide specialized treatment and services for patients needing an intensive rehabilitation program. They treat patients who have suffered a stroke, brain injury, or other severe injury or illness.
IRFs are meant to focus on the gap between being in an acute-care hospital bed and returning to activities of daily living with improved functional status. IRFs are required to provide intense rehabilitative therapies for a minimum of three hours a day, five days a week.
According to research on IRFs around the country, there is strong evidence that, for some patients, placement at an IRF following a hospital stay leads to better long-term health outcomes.
Oregon statute ORS 442.315(1) requires organizations proposing IRFs to apply for and obtain a certificate of need from OHA prior to development of such a facility.
OHA’s Certificate of Need Program is a regulatory program designed to discourage unnecessary investment in health care facilities, technology and services. As the name implies, the purpose of certificate of need programs is to evaluate the plans for a service or facility being considered to certify that there is a real need for it.
Historically, the focus of such programs has been to promote access, ensure quality and help control costs by limiting market entry to those facilities and services that are found to be needed, appropriately sponsored, and designed to promote quality and equitable access to care.
Each state Certificate of Need program implicitly incorporates these principles by predicating certification of regulated services on the basis of community or public need. Unnecessary investment in unneeded facilities and services may result in the building of facilities that are not financially viable and may also put financial stress on existing providers, resulting in higher costs and disruption to the health care system.
Oregon’s Certificate of Need Program, administered through the Health Care Regulation and Quality Improvement Section at the OHA Public Health Division, is a standardized program that has existed since 1971. Nationally, 36 states and Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia have CN programs. Three additional states have variations of the program.
The final orders can be viewed on the Certificate of Need website.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 24, 2022
SUPPORT BUSINESS • PROMOTE EMPLOYMENT
In April, unemployment rates declined in 28 of Oregon’s 36 counties. Unemployment rates in seven counties did not decline, but held steady over the month. The unemployment rate in Gilliam County increased over the month. Twelve counties had unemployment rates at or below the statewide rate of 3.7% in April. Eleven counties had unemployment rates below the national rate of 3.6%.
Klamath County had Oregon’s highest seasonally adjusted unemployment rate (5.4%) in April. Other counties with relatively high unemployment rates were Grant (5.3%), Curry (5.1%), Crook (5.0%), and Lincoln (5.0%). Benton County registered the lowest unemployment rate in April, at 2.9%. Other counties with some of the lowest unemployment rates in April included Wheeler (3.0%), Washington (3.1%), and Hood River (3.1%).
Between April 2021 and April 2022, total nonfarm employment rose in each of the six broad regions across Oregon. The five Portland metro counties and Willamette Valley region experienced the fastest job growth over the year at 3.8% each. Employment also grew at a relatively fast pace in the Central Oregon region (2.8%). Growth occurred at a slower pace in Southern Oregon (0.8%), Eastern Oregon (0.7%), and along the Coast (0.7%).
Next News Releases
The Oregon Employment Department will release statewide unemployment rate and industry employment data for May 2022 on Wednesday, June 15, 2022. The May 2022 county and metropolitan area unemployment rates will be released on Wednesday, June 22 2022.
The Oregon Employment Department (OED) is an equal opportunity agency. Everyone has a right to use OED programs and services. OED provides free help. Some examples are sign language and spoken language interpreters, written materials in other languages, braille, large print, audio and other formats. If you need help, please call 971-673-6400. TTY users call 711. You can also ask for help at OED_Communications@employ.oregon.gov.
Donors have chance to win VIP trip to Graceland and more by coming to give in June
(Portland, OR) May 24, 2022 — Elvis Presley is known for being the first global rock and roll icon. He was also a blood donor himself! While times have changed, the need for blood has not − donors can leave a lasting legacy themselves by making a lifesaving blood or platelet donation with the American Red Cross.
In honor of the new Baz Luhrmann film, Elvis, all who come to give in the month of June will be automatically entered for a chance to win a VIP trip to Graceland for two, including round-trip airfare to Memphis, plus a three-night stay at The Guest House and Elvis Entourage VIP tour, courtesy of Graceland, a custom-wrapped Gibson Epiphone guitar and more. Additionally, those who come to donate June 1-30 will also receive a $5 e-gift card to a merchant of choice.
It’s critically important the Red Cross maintain a stable blood supply for patients this summer. To schedule an appointment to donate, download the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit https://rdcrss.org/findappt1 or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
Final days of COVID-19 antibody testing
All Red Cross blood, platelet and plasma donations are being tested for COVID-19 antibodies through June 3. Donors can learn if their donation has the antibody levels needed to potentially help COVID-19 patients with a weakened immune system.
Here are a few upcoming blood donation opportunities June 1-15:
6/3 – Rock Creek Church, 4470 NW 185th Ave, Portland, 12:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
6/3 – Lake Oswego City Hall, 9:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
6/3 – Eastwood Baptist Church, 675 N. Keene Wy., Medford, 10:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
6/4 – Salem Blood Donation Center, 1860 Hawthorne Ave, Salem, 7:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
6/6 – Portland Playhouse, 602 NE Prescott St., Portland, 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
6/8 – Motel 6, 1572 NE Burnside Rd., Gresham, 1:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.
Health insights for donors
At a time when health information has never been more important, the Red Cross is screening all blood, platelet and plasma donations from self-identified African American donors for the sickle cell trait. This additional screening will provide Black donors with an additional health insight and help the Red Cross identify compatible blood types more quickly to help patients with sickle cell disease. Blood transfusion is an essential treatment for those with sickle cell disease, and blood donations from individuals of the same race, ethnicity and blood type have a unique ability to help patients fighting sickle cell disease.
Donors can expect to receive sickle cell trait screening results, if applicable, within one to two weeks through the Red Cross Blood Donor App and the online donor portal at RedCrossBlood.org.
Blood drive safety
The Red Cross follows a high standard of safety and infection control. The Red Cross will continue to socially distance wherever possible at blood drives, donation centers and facilities. Oregon and Washington still require masks to be worn at all blood collection sites. Donors are asked to schedule an appointment prior to arriving at a drive.
How to donate blood
Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit https://rdcrss.org/findappt1 , call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enable the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.
Blood and platelet donors can save time at their next donation by using RapidPass® to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Blood Donor App.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides comfort to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; distributes international humanitarian aid; and supports veterans, military members and their families. The Red Cross is a nonprofit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to deliver its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or CruzRojaAmericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.
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Terms apply. Visit rcblood.org/elvismovie
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 24, 2022
Media Contact: OED_COMMUNICATIONS@employ.oregon.gov
Emergency Healthcare Career Fair
BEND – The Oregon Employment Department’s Rapid Response Team is planning an emergency healthcare hiring event on June 2, 2022 to help healthcare workers laid off from St. Charles Hospital find meaningful work.
The event will take place at WorkSource Oregon’s Bend office at 1645 NE Forbes Rd, Ste 100, Bend, OR 97701. The public is invited to join the WorkSource Oregon Career Fair from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
The event will help connect job seekers to local resources and employers and even allow healthcare workers who have been laid off a chance to interview on the spot with other local employers. Rapid Response staff can also provide healthcare workers advice on updating a resume so that their application stands out among the competition.
You can find more information about WorkSource Oregon career assistance at worksourceoregon.org.
The Oregon Employment Department (OED) is an equal opportunity agency. Everyone has a right to use OED programs and services. OED provides free help. Some examples are sign language and spoken language interpreters, written materials in other languages, braille, large print, audio and other formats. If you need help, please call 971-673-6400. TTY users call 711. You can also ask for help at OED_Communications@employ.oregon.gov.
Scammers never stop; they work around the clock to cash in on the latest scheme hoping to steal your money or your identity. You’ve heard many of their pitches: they pretend to be romantically interested in you, say they are a relative in trouble, or pretend to be collecting money for a charity after a natural disaster.
Soon, the cycle of fraud begins. When the FBI or another law enforcement or government agency issues a release about their scheme, they adapt and make enough changes to their pitch to convince the victims their claims are real. It’s time to crush their crime sprees.
Thing about it this way, “scams change, red flags don’t!” No matter what type of story you hear via email, text, phone, social media, by mail, or in person, scams change, but the below red flags don’t. Here are our top ten signs the person you are communicating with is trying to scam you. The person;
Requests payment via gift cards, wire transfers, or virtual currency.
Creates a sense of urgency or deadline to pay quickly.
Demands secrecy from you.
Poor grammar or misspellings.
Payments offered in amounts higher than listed price.
Email addresses disguised to seem legitimate.
Unsolicited emails, texts, etc., requesting you confirm usernames and/or passwords.
Requests to move to a new platform to communicate.
Requests to access your personal bank account to pay you for a service.
Unsolicited emails with links or attachments.
No matter what type of story someone is telling you, as always, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
On Monday, May 23, 2022 at about 10:29 AM, Oregon State Police Troopers were dispatched to a motor vehicle crash at milepost 19 on Hwy 199 near Selma.
Preliminary investigation revealed a northbound white Volkswagen Bug, operated by Jesse Kozechen (29) of Brazil, swerved to avoid traffic that had slowed for a turning vehicle. The operator over-corrected and lost control, sliding into the southbound lane where it collided with a Ford Escape, operated by Eileen Huss (62) of Selma.
Kozechen sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced deceased. Huss was transported with injuries. Huss’s two-year-old passenger was uninjured.
Hwy 199 was closed for two hours while the Oregon State Police Collision Reconstruction Unit investigated the scene.
OSP was assisted by AMR, Josephine County Sheriff’s Office, Illinois Valley Fire Department and ODOT.
SALEM, Ore. – The Emergency Fire Cost Committee will meet in-person at the ODF Headquarters in Salem on Tuesday, June 7, 2022, at 10 a.m. A virtual option will be available. Please use the Zoom video conference information found on the agenda. To provide public comment, please contact email@example.com">Chrystal Bader at 503-945-7220.
The committee’s agenda includes:
The meeting is open to the public to attend either in-person or virtually via Zoom. Public comments will be accepted near the end of the meeting as noted on the agenda. Requests for an interpreter for the hearing impaired or other accommodations for persons with disabilities should be made at least 72 hours before the meeting by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org">Chrystal Bader at 503-945-7220.
The Emergency Fire Cost Committee oversees the Oregon Forest Land Protection Fund (OFLPF), established by the Oregon Legislature as an insurance fund with the purpose of equalizing emergency fire suppression costs among the various Oregon Department of Forestry protection districts. The emergency funding system is designed to operate as an insurance policy whereby all districts contribute (pay premiums) into the fund so that money will be available to any individual district to pay fire suppression costs on emergency fires. View more information on the EFCC webpage.
On Sunday, May 22nd, 2022 at about 11:55 pm, Oregon State Police (OSP) Troopers and emergency personnel responded to the report of a fatal single vehicle crash on Hwy 20 at milepost 11.
Preliminary investigation revealed a Peterbilt CMV towing an unloaded chip trailer with a single occupant, David Damon (67) of Shady Cove, was traveling eastbound and drove onto the shoulder before overcorrecting. The CMV crossed the center line and the westbound lane before striking several trees on the westbound shoulder.
Damon sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced deceased. Hwy 20 was closed for approximately eight hours following the crash. Lane usage, seatbelt usage, and distracted driving are being investigated as contributing factors.
OSP was assisted by Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office, Toledo Fire Department and the Lincoln County District Attorney’s Office and ODOT.
PORTLAND, Ore.—On May 23, 2022, a former resident of Milwaukie, Oregon was sentenced to federal prison for illegally exporting marijuana grown in Oregon to Georgia for resale and laundering the proceeds.
Dante Baldocchi, 30, currently a resident of Altadena, California, was sentenced to 21 months in federal prison and four years’ supervised release.
According to court documents, between January 2017 and June 2020, Baldocchi purchased marijuana in Oregon and arranged to have it shipped via freight to Georgia where he and others sold it to distributors in the Atlanta area and in North Carolina. Baldocchi and his associates shipped portions of the proceeds from Georgia back to Oregon in vacuum-sealed bags and other portions concealed in buckets of drywall spackle.
On June 9, 2020, a federal search warrant was executed on Baldocchi’s then-residence in Milwaukie. Investigators located more than 330 pounds of marijuana grown in Oregon.
On August 19, 2021, Baldocchi and an associate—Hunter Lacaden, 27, of Portland—were charged by criminal information with conspiring to distribute marijuana and commit money laundering. On October 13, 2021, Baldocchi pleaded guilty to both charges.
On September 21, 2021, Lacaden pleaded guilty to conspiring to distribute marijuana. On March 28, 2022, he was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison and three years’ supervised release.
U.S. Attorney Scott Erik Asphaug of the District of Oregon made the announcement.
This case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations and IRS-Criminal Investigation with assistance from the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office and Portland Police Bureau. Assistant U.S. Attorney Julia E. Jarrett prosecuted the case.
Salem – Oregon consumers can get a first look at requested rates for 2023 individual and small group health insurance plans, the Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services announced today.
In the individual market, six companies submitted rate change requests ranging from an average 2.3 percent to 12.6 percent increase, for a weighted average increase of 6.7 percent. In the small group market, nine companies submitted rate change requests ranging from an average 0 percent to 11.6 percent increase, for a weighted average increase of 6.9 percent. Our initial review has found that insurers have identified inflation, medical trend, and enrollment changes as factors in the proposed increases. See the attached chart for the full list of rate change requests.
Oregonians will also see an uptick in premiums due to the expiration of temporary enhanced subsidies for on exchange individual market plans. The additional premium support has helped to lower monthly premiums by an average of 46 percent since enactment in 2021. Under the enhanced subsidy structure, people between 151 percent and 200 percent of the federal poverty level can get a bronze plan for as low as $1 per month, with other plans varying in costs. The loss of subsidies will equate to an approximate $11.9 million increase every month for Oregonians.
Health insurance companies submitted rate requests to the department’s Division of Financial Regulation on May 16. The requested rates are for plans that comply with the Affordable Care Act for small businesses and individuals who buy their own coverage rather than getting it through an employer. Every county has at least four companies available for people to buy insurance on the individual market.
Over the next two months, the division will analyze the requested rates to ensure they adequately cover Oregonians’ health care costs. The division must review and approve rates before they are charged to policyholders.
“Oregon continues to have a strong and competitive insurance marketplace, with four carriers offering plans statewide and Oregonians in most our counties having five or six companies to choose from, ” said Insurance Commissioner and DCBS Director Andrew Stolfi. “The Oregon Reinsurance Program continues to allow Oregonians to find reasonable rates.”
The Oregon Reinsurance Program continues to help stabilize the market and lower rates. Reinsurance lowered rates by 6 percent for the fifth straight year.
Virtual public hearings about the 2023 health insurance rates will be held July 27-28. A web address to watch the public hearings will be posted at oregonhealthrates.org. At the hearings, each insurance company will provide a brief presentation about its rate requests, answer questions from the division, and hear public comment from Oregonians.
“We look forward to a thorough public review of these filings as we work to establish next year’s health insurance rates.” Stolfi said. “We encourage all Oregonians to join us for the virtual public hearings and provide feedback on their health insurance plans.”
Oregonians are encouraged to comment on rate change requests during the public comment period, which opens later this month and runs through July 7. The public can submit comments at oregonhealthrates.org and during the public rate hearings.
Preliminary decisions are expected to be announced in early July, and final decisions will be made in early August after public hearings and comment periods end.
About DCBS: The Department of Consumer and Business Services is Oregon's largest business regulatory and consumer protection agency. For more information, go to www.dcbs.oregon.gov.
About Oregon DFR: The Division of Financial Regulation is part of the Department of Consumer and Business Services, Oregon’s largest business regulatory and consumer protection agency. Visit www.dcbs.oregon.gov and dfr.oregon.gov.
On May 20, 2022 at 4:28 pm, Oregon State Police Troopers and emergency personnel responded to a two-vehicle crash on Hwy 219 at French Prairie Rd NE.
Preliminary investigation revealed a Ford Ranger pickup, operated by Harold Crane (79) of Aurora, was northbound on French Prairie Rd NE and failed to stop at a stop sign. The Ford Ranger pickup collided head-on with a Mack CMV, operated by Santana Tadlock (26) of Salem, which was southbound on Hwy 219.
Crane sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced deceased. Tadlock was uninjured.
The roadway was closed for approximately 4 hours.
OSP was assisted by Marion County Sheriff’s Office, St. Paul Fire Department, Gervais Police Department and ODOT.
Date: May 23, 2022
Incident: Scam caller impersonating Bend Police officer
Date / Time of Incident: May 22, 2022, 3 p.m.
Bend Police would like to alert the public of a potential scam involving the use of one of our officer’s names.
On Sunday afternoon, Bend Police were informed that a community member had received a call from someone purporting to be Bend Police Officer Andrew Davis. The caller identified himself as a detective, provided an incorrect badge number and claimed he had a subpoena preventing the community member from leaving the country. The community member became suspicious, and a coworker contacted Bend Police to verify the contents of the call.
Since that time, Bend Police have received additional calls from concerned community members regarding suspicious phone calls from a scammer pretending to be Officer Davis. The scammer left messages saying he needed to share “sensitive information” with these community members.
Bend Police would like to remind the public that we will never ask for money to clear up a legal matter, and community members should be suspicious of any situation in which an unfamiliar person asks for money or personal information over the telephone. Police also will never ask for a payment via gift cards. Do not provide personal information or financial details to companies or callers you don’t know.
If you receive a call from someone purporting to be a Bend Police officer and are unsure of the call’s veracity, you should hang up and call nonemergency dispatch at 541-693-6911 to verify the caller’s identity.
If you have received a similar call, please file an online report at www.BendPoliceReports.com.
March 24, 2022
What: The regular public meeting of the Oregon Health Authority’s CCO Metrics Technical Advisory Group.
When: May 26, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Where: By webinar and conference line only. The public may join remotely through a webinar and conference line:
Agenda: Welcome and introductions (1:00-1:10); Updates (1:10-1:20); TAG periodicity survey (1:20-1:35); Health Equity measure – Language services reporting (Part 2) (1:35-1:55); Open forum: CCO validation questions on 2021 metrics (1:55-2:15); adjourn.
For more information, please visit the committee's website at http://www.oregon.gov/OHA/HPA/ANALYTICS/Pages/Metrics-Technical-Advisory-Group.aspx.
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Everyone has a right to know about and use Oregon Health Authority (OHA) programs and services. OHA provides free help. Some examples of the free help OHA can provide are:
If you need help or have questions, please contact Brian Toups at 503-385-6542, or
Portland, Ore. – Fire restrictions will go into effect on May 27 for all Bureau of Land Management (BLM) public lands throughout Oregon and Washington. The BLM encourages all visitors to be aware of active restrictions and closures as we continue to see high visitation rates across Oregon and Washington.
Fire restrictions help reduce the risk of human-caused fires. Starting May 27, the use of fireworks, exploding targets or metallic targets, steel component ammunition (core or jacket), tracer or incendiary devices, and sky lanterns will be prohibited.
“Fire restrictions help protect our first responders, local communities, and public lands from accidental wildfires,” said Barry Bushue, BLM Oregon/Washington State Director. “We are continuing to see drought conditions across Oregon and Washington. By following fire restrictions, the public can help us focus our fire resources on naturally caused fires.”
Those who violate the prohibition can be fined up to $1,000 and/or receive a prison term of up to one year. In addition, those found responsible for starting wildland fires on federal lands can be billed for the cost of fire suppression.
May is also ‘Wildfire Awareness Month’. Visit Firewise USA to learn more about how to keep you and your family safe.
For more information on Bureau of Land Management Oregon/Washington seasonal fire restrictions and fire closures, please see www.blm.gov/orwafire. To learn more about fire careers with BLM Oregon-Washington, click here.
The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.
Salem – The City of Keizer continues to strengthen its commitment to workplace health and safety, achieving third-year certification as part of Oregon OSHA’s Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP).
SHARP, primarily set up to help small- and mid-sized businesses, coaches employers on how to effectively manage workplace safety and health. The program encourages Oregon employers to work with their employees to identify and correct hazards and to continuously improve. In turn, companies are recognized for their success in reaching specific benchmarks during the five-year program. An employer may graduate from SHARP after five years of participation.
The benefits of the program include lower injury and illness rates, decreased workers’ compensation costs, increased employee morale, lower product losses, and community recognition.
Although departments of other city governments have achieved SHARP certification, the City of Keizer is the first city in Oregon to earn the designation on a citywide – not just department-level – basis. During the City of Keizer’s SHARP journey – formally started in 2018 – the city has engaged in numerous project and process improvements designed to strengthen on-the-job protections for its workers. Examples include everything from installation of eyewash stations at key locations and the completion of training for all new safety committee members to implementation of exhaust and dust collection systems in pump stations and improved training and access to information for emergency evacuation coordinators.
In assessing the city’s efforts as a SHARP participant, Oregon OSHA consultants recently concluded that the city “has consistently followed through with all evaluations, training, programs, and procedures for both the safety and health of all employees.”
Machell DePina, human resources director and safety administrator for the City of Keizer, said the city decided to pursue SHARP after completing a safety manual project and after the city’s safety committee indicated it wanted to “ensure a continued focus on safety, not just a binder that is put on a shelf.”
So, DePina said, the city decided “to go for what hasn’t been done before – certification of a municipality in the SHARP program.”
Putting a focus on workplace safety through SHARP has shown employees the city is committed to proactively addressing their concerns, DePina said. Meanwhile, the SHARP designation has caught the attention of prospective job candidates who have noted the designation shows the city takes safety seriously.
“It’s hard, but important, work,” DePina said of SHARP. “Our employees are our most valuable asset, and we need to do what we can to ensure they go home as well or better than when they arrived.”
Employers that have been operating for more than a year are eligible to apply for SHARP. Before the process begins, employers must agree to several requirements, including:
Learn more about SHARP.
Learn about Oregon OSHA’s consultation services, offering free help with improving workplace health and safety programs – no fault, no citations, no penalties.
Oregon OSHA, a division of the Department of Consumer and Business Services, enforces the state's workplace safety and health rules and works to improve workplace safety and health for all Oregon workers. For more information, go to osha.oregon.gov.
(Salem) – The Oregon Department of Human Services (ODHS), Child Welfare Division, is thankful for the community support to find Mercedes “Bo” Dunnington.
Bo, age 16, is a child in foster care who went missing from Bend on May 15. She was found May 21.
A small number of children in foster care may be in significant danger when they run away or have gone missing. As ODHS works to do everything it can to find these missing children and ensure their safety, media alerts will be issued in some circumstances when it is determined necessary. Sometimes, in these situations, a child may go missing repeatedly, resulting in more than one media alert for the same child.
Report child abuse to the Oregon Child Abuse Hotline by calling 1-855-503-SAFE (7233). This toll-free number allows you to report abuse of any child or adult to the Oregon Department of Human Services, 24 hours a day, seven days a week and 365 days a year.
Free parking, free RV and tent site camping, and special events highlighting the Oregon State Parks centennial are planned for State Parks Day on Saturday, June 4.
Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) will waive day-use parking fees at the 26 locations that charge them and waive camping fees for all tent, RV and horse campsites.
State Parks Day has been a tradition since 1998 as a way to thank Oregonians for their support of the state park system over many decades.
“State parks are here because Oregonians know our state parks are special. You’ve invested in them, helped care for them and kept them open to all. Thank you.” said OPRD Director Lisa Sumption. “This year’s State Parks Day is even more meaningful in light of our centennial. We hope you will come out and wish Happy 100th Birthday to Oregon State Parks.”
Several special events and service projects are planned June 4 to celebrate State Parks Day and the Oregon State Parks centennial.
Monmouth: A free community birthday party is scheduled 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. at Oregon’s first state park, Sarah Helmick State Recreation Site. The event will feature a dedication, interactive demonstrations and exhibits, a classic car show, giveaways and birthday cake while supplies last.
Port Orford: Cape Blanco State Park and the Cape Blanco Heritage Society will host a celebration of the state parks centennial and the 150th anniversary of the Cape Blanco Lighthouse. The event, scheduled at the lighthouse grounds, will feature live music, raffles, a lighthouse diorama presentation, food by the Rotary Club of Port Orford and a Coast Guard flyover at 2 p.m.
St. Paul: Champoeg State Heritage Area will host a living history event from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Visitors will experience an authentic fur trappers’ encampment that hearkens back to the early 1800’s when fur trappers and their families camped along the Willamette River at this location.
Medford: At Valley of the Rogue State Park, visitors are invited to watch two professional wood carvers create new sculptures they will donate to the park. They will be working 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. June 4 and 5 at the Valley of the Rogue rest area.
Additional special events and service projects celebrating the centennial will be posted throughout the year on the Oregon State Parks event calendar.
The mission of Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) is to provide and protect outstanding natural, scenic, cultural, historic and recreational sites for the enjoyment and education of present and future generations. The department manages 254 Oregon State Parks comprising more than 100,000 acres.
A hundred years ago, state parks were barely an idea in Oregon. A 5-acre donation in 1922 became Oregon’s first official state park. Join us in 2022 to celebrate the places Oregonians hold dear: the viewpoints, the waterfalls, the trails and the historic landmarks. Share photos and memories on social media with the hashtags #oregonstateparks and #oregonstateparks100. Learn more at stateparks.oregon.gov.
Media hotline: 503-813-6018
Applications open to fund Oregon electric mobility projects
More than $1.3 million available in grants to help state go electric
PORTLAND, Ore. — May 23, 2022--Nonprofits, local governments and other non-residential Pacific Power customers in Oregon are encouraged to apply for the Electric Mobility Grant. Launching in May 2022, more than $1.3 million will be available for electric mobility projects in Oregon.
Grant funding is made possible by the Oregon Clean Fuels Program, which is administered by the state Department of Environmental Quality and aims to reduce the carbon intensity of Oregon’s transportation fuels. Pacific Power raises funds through the sale of Clean Fuels Program credits, which the company aggregates on behalf of customers who charge their electric vehicles at home.
“Electric vehicles and supporting infrastructure are increasingly in-demand by customers and communities across the state,” said Cory Scott, vice president of community and customer solutions. “This grant program is just one of the ways Pacific Power is helping prepare communities for more electric vehicles on the road.”
Starting in 2020, Pacific Power has awarded more than 20 unique E-Mobility Grants to nonprofits, local governments, hospitals and other non-residential customers served by Pacific Power in Oregon.
“Pacific Power is unique in that we serve diverse communities throughout Oregon, including large metro areas and rural communities, major corridors and vacation destinations, “said Kate Hawley, senior product manager, electric transportation. “We have supported many innovative projects over the last few years, and we look forward to seeing what is in store for this year.”
Funding awards will cover up to 100 percent of the project cost. All non-residential Pacific Power customers in Oregon are eligible to apply with preference given to community-focused organizations, such as school and transit districts, 501(c)(3) organizations and city, county, and regional governments. Applications will be accepted up to Aug. 31, 2022 at 5 p.m. Recipients will be announced in November 2022. Grant recipients must complete projects within 18 months from the date of award.
In addition to the Electric Mobility Grant, Pacific Power is pleased to make Electric Vehicle (EV) grant matching support funds available to non-residential customers in Oregon who plan to secure additional funding to support Pacific Power customers with EV-related projects. Additionally, grant writing support is available for non-residential customers to apply to EV-related grants to support Pacific Power customers.
Pacific Power also offers customers an electric vehicle charging station technical assistance program. The program supports non-residential customers interested in installing electrical vehicle supply equipment or electrifying their fleet with technical assistance. The technical assistance program is available at no cost and includes a site visit, analysis of electric vehicle technology options, costs, rates, and best practices for siting, configuring, installing, and managing equipment.
For detailed eligibility requirements, charging station project qualifications, additional technical assistance program details, application forms and more information about the benefits of electric vehicles, please visit pacificpower.net/ev.
About Pacific Power
Pacific Power provides electric service to more than 770,000 customers in Oregon, Washington and California. It is part of PacifiCorp, one of the lowest-cost electricity producers in the United States, providing 2 million customers with value for their energy dollar through safe, reliable electricity. For more information, visit www.pacificpower.net.
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May 23, 2022
What: Public meetings of the Drug Treatment and Recovery Act (Measure 110) Oversight and Accountability Council and its subcommittees to approve Behavioral Health Resource Network applications.
Agendas: Posted on the Oversight and Accountability web page prior to each meeting.
All meetings are virtual.
Tuesday, May 24, 4-7 p.m. https://youtu.be/7W4yTuthJRw
Thursday, May 26, 4-7 p.m. https://youtu.be/PPO00bwXxTQ
Thursday, May 26, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. https://youtu.be/Fs3iZFX_b34
Friday, May 27, 12-4 p.m. https://youtu.be/rqKEWariNc4
Purpose: The Drug Treatment and Recovery Act (Measure 110) Oversight and Accountability Council oversees the establishment of Behavioral Health Resource Networks throughout Oregon. The OAC will hold regular meetings to accomplish the necessary steps to fund and set up the networks.
Everyone has a right to know about and use Oregon Health Authority (OHA) programs and services. OHA provides free help. Some examples of the free help OHA can provide are:
EMBARGOED FOR RELEASE
10 a.m. PT, Monday, May 23, 2022
More than 2,000 Frontline Nurses at 3 Portland Area Hospitals Are Voting or Have Voted to Strike Providence.
NURSE PRESS CONFERENCE:
Monday, May 23
10 a.m. PT
3645 SE 32nd Ave, Portland, OR 97202
Oregon Nurses Association (ONA) leaders from Providence Willamette Falls Medical Center, Providence Milwaukie Hospital and Providence St. Vincent Medical Center will speak and answer media questions along with statewide ONA leaders and labor allies. Contact Scott Palmer or Kevin Mealy to confirm.
(Portland, OR) – Frontline nurses at Providence Willamette Falls Medical Center in Oregon City and Providence Milwaukie Hospital in Milwaukie are launching simultaneous strike votes Monday against Providence—one of Oregon’s largest companies. The strike votes are to protest Providence’s illegal unfair labor practices (ULPs) and demand fair contracts which improve patient care, raise nurse staffing standards, make health care more affordable and address Providence’s growing staffing crisis.
The Oregon Nurses Association (ONA) represents 233 frontline nurses working at Providence Willamette Falls and 239 frontline nurses working at Providence Milwaukie.
The strike votes will take place from May 23 - June 2. If approved, the nurses would join 1,600 ONA frontline nurses working at Providence St. Vincent Medical Center in Portland—one of Oregon’s largest and most profitable hospitals—who voted nearly unanimously to strike Providence on May 3.
Despite nurses’ sacrifices over the last two years serving on the frontlines of a deadly pandemic, Providence has left hundreds of frontline nurses working without the safety and security of a contract. Providence allowed nurse contracts at major Oregon hospitals including Providence St. Vincent and Providence Willamette Falls to expire in 2021. Providence Milwaukie’s contract will expire this month.
ONA nurses and community allies are coming together to speak up about safety issues and put patients first in a fair contract. During contract negotiations, ONA frontline nurses are asking Providence for basic safety standards to protect our patients, our coworkers and our families including:
Strike vote results are expected to be announced Friday, June 3 after ONA’s Labor Cabinet reviews vote results and determines whether to authorize additional strikes against Providence—one of Oregon’s largest and most profitable health systems.
If ONA members vote to authorize strikes at Providence Willamette Falls and Providence Milwaukie, ONA’s nurse leaders will determine next steps including setting potential strike dates. If strikes are called ONA will provide Providence with a 10-day notice to allow management adequate time to cease admissions and transfer patients or to reach a fair agreement with nurses and avert a work stoppage. ONA’s nurse bargaining team at Providence Willamette Falls is scheduled to meet with Providence management for bargaining sessions on May 25 and June 3. ONA’s nurse bargaining team at Providence Milwaukie is scheduled to meet with Providence management for bargaining sessions on May 26 and June 16 and 23.
ONA represents more than 4,000 frontline nurses working in 10 Providence Health System facilities from Portland to Medford including Providence Willamette Falls, Providence Milwaukie and Providence St. Vincent. ONA nurses at Providence Hood River are also in negotiations over an expired contract.
Providence St. Joseph Health is the third-largest health system in the US with tens of billions in annual revenue. It is Oregon’s largest health care system and one of the state’s largest corporations. Despite its national reach, Providence regularly collects more than half of its total profits from Oregonians. ONA nurses are asking Providence’s corporate executives to re-invest in safe, high-quality, affordable health care.
“While Oregon’s nurses were running into COVID-19 rooms wearing reused PPE we pulled from paper bags, taxpayers handed Providence and other hospitals billions to ensure our hospitals stayed open during the pandemic. Providence alone collected nearly $1.3 billion in taxpayer bailouts from the CARES Act to add to its $14 billion in cash and investment revenues,” said ONA President Lynda Pond, RN.
“Frontline nurses have invested in Providence with our blood, sweat, tears and our dollars. Now we’re demanding Providence invest in our communities and put those profits to work as intended. It’s time for Providence to listen to nurses and reinvest in patient safety, safe staffing, and caregiver retention to improve health care for all Oregonians,” Pond said.
Click here to learn more.
The Oregon Nurses Association (ONA) is the state’s largest and most influential nursing organization. We are a professional association and labor union which represents more than 15,000 nurses and allied health workers throughout the state, including more than 4,000 nurses working at 10 Providence Oregon health care facilities throughout the state. ONA’s mission is to advocate for nursing, quality health care and healthy communities. For more information visit: www.OregonRN.org.