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Bend/Central-Eastern Oregon News Releases for Sat. Apr. 4 - 2:14 pm
Police & Fire
Bend Police Arrest Subject After Near-Fatal Heroin Overdose
Bend Police Dept. - 04/04/20 12:45 PM

Subject: Bend Police Arrest Subject After Near-Fatal Heroin Overdose

News Release from Bend Police Department

Date:  Saturday, April 4th 2020

Date & Time of Incident:  Thursday, April 3rd, 2020 @ 1415 hours                       

Type of Incident:  Drug Arrest                      

Location of Incident:  19000 block of Harvard Pl., Bend, OR   

                                         

Suspect Information:

Davies, Stephen Owen                   26 years old, Bend resident

 

Victim Information:

27 year old male, Bend resident

 

On Thursday, April 2nd, 2020 at about 1230 hours, multiple Bend Police Officers responded to the Greenwood Cemetery for the report of a male who had overdosed on heroin.  Officers arrived and found the subject had no pulse and was not breathing. They then began life-saving efforts to include CPR and Narcan administration.  The reporting party remained on-scene and the male was resuscitated and transported by Bend Fire for further treatment and care. 

Bend Police Officers conducted an investigation into the near-fatal overdose and through the use of a variety of investigative methods developed probable cause to arrest Stephen Owen Davies for Unlawful Delivery of Heroin (A Felony). 

On Friday, April 3rd, 2020 at about 1400 hours, Bend Police Officers went to the 19000 block of Harvard Pl. in SW Bend in an effort to locate Stephen Owen Davies who in addition to the charges related to the overdose had an unrelated parole warrant.  Prior to attempting contact with the residence Davies was observed leaving as the passenger in a vehicle.  A traffic stop was conducted and Davies, along with another male passenger were taken into custody. 

Evidence was seized in relation to the investigation and Davies was lodged at the Deschutes County Adult Jail for Unlawful Delivery of Heroin and Attempted Unlawful Delivery of Heroin as well as his unrelated parole warrant.

The Bend Police Department wants to remind the public of the dangers of Heroin/Opiate use.

 

Prepared by Cpl. Josh Spano

Contact for Bend PIO:  541-322-2980

 


CODE Team Drug Investigation Arrests (Photo)
Central Oregon Drug Enforcement (CODE) - 04/01/20 4:05 PM
2020-04/6078/133015/Ritchie_Loranger_Arrest.jpg
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Date:  Wednesday, April 1, 2020                                                                               

Date & Time of Incident:  Tuesday, March 31, 2020 @ 2300 hrs.                       

Type of Incident:  Drug Arrests                      

Location of Incident:  E. Cascade Ave. @ N. Fir St. Sisters, OR  

                                        

Suspect Information:

1)  Shannon Ritchie            48 year old Prineville, OR resident

2)  Kristin Loranger              39 year old Prineville, OR resident

Narrative:

On Tuesday, March 31, 2020 at approximately 2300 hrs. Detectives assigned to the Central Oregon Drug Enforcement (CODE) team, along with assistance from the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Department, contacted and arrested Ritchie and Loranger at the intersection of E. Cascade Ave. @ N. Fir St in the city of Sisters, OR.  Both were contacted during a traffic stop of a silver in color Honda CRV in which Loranger was the driver and Ritchie was the passenger.

The arrests of Ritchie and Loranger were the result of a long-term investigation by the CODE team into the illegal trafficking of commercial quantities of methamphetamine into the Central Oregon region, more specifically Crook County and the City of Prineville.  During a search of the vehicle at the time of the stop, approximately 1.8 pounds of methamphetamine was located concealed within the vehicle as well as other evidence of the sales and distribution of methamphetamine were located.

Ritchie and Loranger were transported to the Deschutes County Adult Jail on the below listed charges.

Charges:

Ritchie:

  • PCS/DCS (methamphetamine)

Loranger:

  • PCS/DCS (methamphetamine)

 

The Central Oregon Drug Enforcement (CODE) team is a multi-jurisdictional narcotics task force supported by the Oregon-Idaho High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) program and the following Central Oregon law enforcement agencies:  Bend Police Department, Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office, Redmond Police Department,  Prineville Police Department, Crook County Sheriff’s Office, Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, Madras Police Department, Oregon State Police, Sunriver Police Department, Black Butte Police Department, United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Warm Springs Tribal Police Department, Deschutes, Crook, and Jefferson County District Attorney’s, and the Oregon National Guard.

 

The Oregon-Idaho HIDTA program is an Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) sponsored counterdrug grant program that coordinates and provides funding resources to multi-agency drug enforcement task forces to disrupt or dismantle local, multi-state and international drug trafficking organizations.

 

 

 




Attached Media Files: 2020-04/6078/133015/Ritchie_Loranger_Arrest.jpg

School Closings Due to COVID-19 Present Potential for Increased Risk of Child Exploitation
FBI - Oregon - 04/01/20 9:00 AM

Note to Oregon Media: The FBI is offering interviews by phone or Skype between 1:30 - 2:30 PM. You must pre-register for a time slot by emailing media.portland@fbi.gov.

Due to school closings as a result of COVID-19, children will potentially have an increased online presence and/or be in a position that puts them at an inadvertent risk. Due to this newly developing environment, the FBI is seeking to warn parents, educators, caregivers, and children about the dangers of online sexual exploitation and signs of child abuse.

Background

Online sexual exploitation comes in many forms. Individuals may coerce victims into providing sexually explicit images or videos of themselves, often in compliance with offenders’ threats to post the images publicly or send the images to victims’ friends and family.

Other offenders may make casual contact with children online, gain their trust, and introduce sexual conversation that increases in egregiousness over time. Ultimately this activity may result in maintaining an online relationship that includes sexual conversation and the exchange of illicit images, to eventually physically meeting the child in-person.

In order for the victimization to stop, children typically have to come forward to someone they trust—typically a parent, teacher, caregiver, or law enforcement. The embarrassment of being enticed and/or coerced to engage in unwanted behavior is what often prevents children from coming forward. Offenders may have hundreds of victims around the world, so coming forward to help law enforcement identify offenders may prevent countless other incidents of sexual exploitation.

Abuse can occur offline through direct contact with another individual. During these uncertain conditions, where time with other adults and caregivers has increased immensely, parents/guardians should communicate with their children about appropriate contact with adults and watch for any changes in behavior, including an increase in nightmares, withdrawn behavior, angry outbursts, anxiety, depression, not wanting to be left alone with an individual, and sexual knowledge.

Recommendations

Parents and guardians can take the following measures to help educate and prevent children from becoming victims of child predators and sexual exploitation during this time of national emergency:

Online Child Exploitation

  • Discuss Internet safety with children of all ages when they engage in online activity.
  • Review and approve games and apps before they are downloaded.
  • Make sure privacy settings are set to the strictest level possible for online gaming systems and electronic devices.
  • Monitor your children’s use of the Internet; keep electronic devices in an open, common room of the house.
  • Check your children’s profiles and what they post online.
  • Explain to your children that images posted online will be permanently on the Internet.
  • Make sure children know that anyone who asks a child to engage in sexually explicit activity online should be reported to a parent, guardian, or other trusted adult and law enforcement.
  • Remember that victims should not be afraid to tell law enforcement if they are being sexually exploited. It is not a crime for a child to send sexually explicit images to someone if they are compelled or coerced to do so.

Child Abuse Awareness

  • Teach your children about body safety and boundaries.
  • Encourage your children to have open communication with you.
  • Be mindful of who is watching your child for childcare/babysitting, playdates and overnight visits.
  • If your child discloses abuse, immediately contact local law enforcement for assistance.
  • Children experiencing hands-on abuse may exhibit withdrawn behavior, angry outbursts, anxiety, depression, not wanting to be left alone with a specific individual, non-age appropriate sexual knowledge, and an increase in nightmares.

Victim Reporting

Reporting suspected sexual exploitation can help minimize or stop further victimization, as well as lead to the identification and rescue of other possible victims. If you believe you are—or someone you know is—the victim of child sexual exploitation:

When reporting, be as descriptive as possible in the complaint form by providing as much of the following as possible:

  • Name and/or user name of the subject.
  • Email addresses and phone numbers used by the subject.
  • Websites used by the subject.
  • Description of all interaction with the subject.
  • Try to keep all original documentation, emails, text messages, and logs of communication with the subject. Do not delete anything before law enforcement is able to review it.
  • Tell law enforcement everything about the online encounters—we understand it may be embarrassing for the parent or child, but providing all relevant information is necessary to find the offender, stop the abuse, and bring him/her to justice.

More information about the FBI’s guidance on child sexual exploitation and protecting your kids.

For up-to-date information and accurate information about COVID-19, visit coronavirus.govcdc.gov/coronavirus, and usa.gov/coronavirus.

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Oregon FBI Tech Tuesday: Building a Digital Defense Against Fraudulent Sales of COVID-19-Related Medical Equipment (Photo)
FBI - Oregon - 03/31/20 9:00 AM
2020-03/3585/132922/TT_-_COVID-19_Medical_Equip_Fraud_-_March_31_2020_-_GRAPHIC.jpeg
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Scammers continue to take advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic to steal money through a variety of means. The FBI is warning the health care industry in particular of an increased potential for fraudulent activity dealing with the purchase of COVID-19-related medical equipment. Based on the current stress on the supply chain, scammers may promise equipment they do not have access to in order to capitalize on the medical community’s urgent needs. The FBI asks the medical community to exercise due diligence and appropriate caution when dealing with any vendors with whom they have never worked and/or of which they’ve never heard, and when relying on unidentified third-party brokers in the supply chain.

The FBI advises to be on the lookout for any suspicious activity, to include:

  • Unusual payment terms (e.g., supplier asking for up-front payments or proof of payment)
  • Last-minute price changes
  • Last-minute excuses for delay in shipment (e.g., claims that the equipment was seized at port or stuck in customs)
  • Unexplained source of bulk supply

If you think you have information of suspicious activity by a vendor, or believe you were a victim of a scam or attempted fraud involving COVID-19, please report it:

Additionally, the FBI urges everyone to be cautious of anyone selling products that claim to prevent, treat, diagnose, or cure COVID-19. Be alert to counterfeit products like sanitizing products and personal protective equipment (PPE), including N95 respirator masks, goggles, full-face shields, protective gowns, and gloves.

More information on unapproved or counterfeit PPE can be found at cdc.gov/niosh. You can also find information on the U.S. Food and Drug Administrationwebsite and the Environmental Protection Agency website. Counterfeit products can be reported to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center and to the National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center.

For up-to-date information and accurate information about COVID-19, visit:

###

Note to media: There is no audio file available for this Tech Tuesday report. If you would like to request audio, please contact media.portland@fbi.gov.




Attached Media Files: 2020-03/3585/132922/TT_-_COVID-19_Medical_Equip_Fraud_-_March_31_2020_-_GRAPHIC.jpeg

ICYMI: Salem Streets Crime Unit Recovers 31 Pounds of Meth & $50,000 (Photo)
FBI - Oregon - 03/30/20 1:22 PM
Gallegos-Mendoza photo - Government Exhibit A
Gallegos-Mendoza photo - Government Exhibit A
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A Salem woman, Maria Gallegos-Mendoza, age 45, faces federal drug distribution charges following an investigation by the Salem Police Street Crime Unit. On March 19, 2020, Salem Police Department Street Crimes Unit, with assistance from FBI and DEA task force partners – arrested Gallegos-Mendoza and another suspect during the service of multiple search warrants in Salem. 

During the course of the search, the task force seized 31 pounds of methamphetamine and approximately $50,000 in cash.

The FBI charged Gallegos-Mendoza via a federal criminal complaint on March 24, 2020, with possession with the intent to distribute methamphetamine and conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine. According to the complaint, Gallegos-Mendoza told investigators that she had been selling methamphetamine for two years in amounts of 3.5 grams to one pound. The complaint also details that Gallegos-Mendoza would sell pound quantities of methamphetamine for approximately $2,500 each.

On March 25, 2020, Gallegos-Mendoza made her first appearance in federal court.

A criminal complaint is only an accusation of a crime, and all defendants should be presumed innocent until proven guilty.

This case is being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Oregon.

###




Attached Media Files: Gallegos-Mendoza photo - Government Exhibit A

UPDATE - Oregon State Police Investigating Fatal Shooting in Josephine County
Oregon State Police - 04/03/20 3:30 PM

The deceased male - Preston Sweaney (29) of Grants Pass.

On Thursday, April 2, 2020 at approximately 11:00 A.M., Oregon State Police Troopers and Josephine County Deputies responded to a report of a shooting in the 2700 block of Speaker Road in Josephine County.

Responding officers located a deceased male in a vehicle on the property. 

OSP Major Crimes Detectives responded to conduct an investigation and were assisted by the Josephine County Sheriff’s Office.

Detectives learned that the property owner had called 911 to report he had confronted a man in a vehicle that was shooting on his property.  The man in the vehicle shot at the property owner who then returned fire. 

OSP, working with the Josephine County DA, has determined this to be self-defense and no criminal charges are expected.


MEDIA ADVISORY - New RPD Public Information Officer
Redmond Police Dept. - 04/01/20 12:00 PM

ATTENTION MEDIA PARTNERS - Information only, not intended for public disclosure

Beginning, Monday, April 6, 2020, Lieutenant Jesse Petersen will be the new Public Information Officer for the Redmond Police Department.  Please direct all media inquires to him.  Media inquiries sent to the previous PIO will be forwarded to LT Petersen.  LT Petersen's contact information is below.


Redmond Police Arrest Suspect in Burglary
Redmond Police Dept. - 03/31/20 2:49 PM

Redmond, OR – On Tuesday, March 31, 2020, at 9:30 AM, Redmond Police responded to a reported burglary at Eagle Rock Apartments, 1612 SW Lava Ave.   A 911 caller reported a person had broken into his residence and he scared him away firing two rounds from a handgun. 

 

The fleeing suspect,  James Bonner III, a 26-year-old Redmond resident, was later located at the Obsidian Apartments, 1619 SW Obsidian Ave, and taken into custody without incident.  He was transported to the Deschutes County Adult Jail. 

 

Preliminary information indicates Mr. Bonner and the victim knew each other.  Bonner went to the victim’s residence and forced his way through a locked door.  After being threatened, the victim fired two warning shots into the floor of the apartment.  Bonner fled in a vehicle and was located by law enforcement at the Obsidian Apartment complex.   Drug activity does not appear to be a factor in this incident. 


UPDATE - Redmond Man Arrested After Threatening Others
Redmond Police Dept. - 03/30/20 3:21 PM

UPDATE - The first name of arrested person misspelled in the previous release.  The correct spelling is Gabreial.  The Redmond Police Department regrets the error.

 

=========================

 

Redmond, OR – On March 27, 2020, at approximately 5:40 PM, officers from the Redmond Police Department responded to the 2200 block of SW 33rd Street after receiving a report of a male armed with a weapon who had purportedly threatened others in the area. 

An investigation revealed a nearby homeowner was having a “Stay Home, Save Lives” compliant birthday party for their child.   In the spirit of social distancing, friends would drive by, honk their horn, and sing happy birthday while inside their vehicles. 

According to witnesses, 45-year-old Gabreial Russell, walked out of his house wearing a gas mask and holding a weapon, while allegedly making threatening statements to those participating in the party. Redmond Police Officers and Detectives at the scene were able to take Mr. Russell into custody without incident.  A search warrant for Mr. Russell’s residence was obtained where additional evidence was seized.  The investigation determined the weapon Mr. Russell possessed was a realistic-looking MP5-style BB rifle.    

Mr. Russel was lodged at the Deschutes County Jail on charges of Menacing and Unlawful Use of a Weapon. 


Medical
VA Portland offers virtual care options for Veterans (Photo)
VA Portland Health Care System (VAPORHCS) - 04/03/20 12:50 PM
VA / VAPORHCS logo/seal
VA / VAPORHCS logo/seal
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PORTLAND, Ore. –VA Portland Health Care System (VAPORHCS) is committed to providing high-quality care while keeping Veterans safe from the coronavirus (COVID-19).

“Due to COVID-19 precautionary measures and out of concern for our Veterans, we are honoring current social isolation and distancing guidelines,” said Darwin Goodspeed, VAPORHCS director. “Through VA’s virtual care tools, we are able to leverage available technology to make sure that our patients and staff are as safe as possible during this time.”

To help us address our Veterans’ most-urgent needs first, the VAPORHCS asks that Veterans use our online tools for routine or non-urgent questions.

Here are some examples:

Telephone or Video Appointments – Veterans can receive care at home — either over the phone or via video using VA Video Connect on their computers, smartphones, or tablets. To set up telephone or video appointments, Veterans can send their provider a secure message on My HealtheVet by visiting myhealth.va.gov. Veterans may also call VA Portland at 503-220-8262, option 2 to relay a message to their Primary or Specialty Care team or to make change or cancel an appointment. To learn more about VA Video Connect, visit mobile.va.gov/app/va-video-connect. For more details about accessing VAPORHCS Mental Health services, click HERE.

Prescription Refills – Veterans can request prescription refills and order and ship medications to their homes using My HealtheVet or the Rx Refill mobile app. Download the app at mobile.va.gov/app/rx-refill. Learn more details are on the VAPORHCS Pharmacy web page.

Text Message Reminders – Veterans can use Annie’s Coronavirus Precautions protocol to send automated text messages with information about COVID-19. This application helps Veterans monitor for symptoms and can assist if they need to contact their VA facility for care. Enroll at mobile.va.gov/annie.

Secure Messaging – With My HealtheVet, VA’s online patient portal, Veterans can send online secure messages to your VA health care team to ask them nonurgent health questions. Register at www.myhealth.va.gov.

For more information about VA’s Connected Care technologies, visit connectedcare.va.gov

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Attached Media Files: VA / VAPORHCS logo/seal

VA Portland Veteran Telephone Town Hall (Photo)
VA Portland Health Care System (VAPORHCS) - 04/03/20 12:34 PM
VA logo/seal
VA logo/seal
http://www.flashalertnewswire.net/images/news/2020-04/628/133089/thumb_VA_VHA-VAPORHCS_Signature_Seal_JPG.jpg

VA Portland Health Care System invites our Veterans and family members to participate in an April 8th, 12 noon telephone town hall to hear about care options and ask questions of VA Portland staff and leaders as we all deal with the new age of COVID-19.

Veterans can register by clicking on this link below and simply provide their city, state, zip code and phone number they want to be called on to participate.

https://dashboard.teletownhall.us/registration/C3YDTQREHN7M

All registrants have to do is answer their phone when called on April 8 at about noon to participate.

Participants will be given instructions during the call to talk to operators who will take their questions for the VA Portland leaders and subject matter experts to address. 

If Veterans have questions about this event, please contact us at
-PublicAffairs@med.va.gov">VHAPOR-PublicAffairs@med.va.gov
or 503-402-2975

Please share this event via Facebook or the VAPORHCS website.


 




Attached Media Files: VA logo/seal

Utilities
Pacific Power Foundation offers support for community organizations responding to COVID-19
Pacific Power - 04/03/20 8:18 AM

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media Hotline: 800-570-5838

April 2, 2020

 

Pacific Power Foundation offers support for community organizations responding to COVID-19

The utility is encouraging businesses and individuals to support community organizations, now facing extraordinary demands for services, to ensure those in need continue to receive support

PORTLAND, Ore. — Community organizations are facing unprecedented challenges and demand for vital services. Pacific Power’s charitable arm, the Pacific Power Foundation, has committed $250,000 for immediate support to critical community-serving organizations in Oregon, Washington and California.

From providing free meals for children during school closures to deploying resources and support to small businesses and care for seniors, community-based groups throughout the West have put out a call for assistance to support local COVID-19 initiatives.

“Food banks and other critical organizations serve the most vulnerable populations in our communities and are under tremendous strain,” said Stefan Bird, president and CEO. “The Pacific Power Foundation is committed to supporting vital community organizations that depend and survive on contributions like this.” 

Agencies include the Oregon Food Bank, Partners for a Hunger-Free Oregon, Oregon Community Foundation, Portland Rescue Mission, Oregon Energy Fund, Salvation Army divisions in California and Washington and the Northwest Community Action Center.

Oregon Food Bank CEO Susannah Morgan underscored the importance of community partnerships, especially in times of crisis. “With the strong support of allies like Pacific Power, Oregon Food Bank can ensure nutritious food reaches hard-hit communities throughout Oregon and Southwest Washington. By working collectively, our network of more than 1,400 partners across Oregon and SW Washington stands ready to meet this crisis head-on. Together, we can ensure hunger is not a symptom of COVID-19 — and help us all emerge stronger.”  

"Oregon families are facing the triple crisis of public health, closed schools and lost wages during this pandemic,” said Annie Kirschner, executive director for Partners for a Hunger-Free Oregon. “Though many of us have to stay home, we are still coming together to make sure everyone has enough food to eat. We're grateful to partners like Pacific Power for responding quickly to help make sure our neighbors, especially those most vulnerable across the state, are connected to resources."                                                                                                                                      

Looking for ways to help? Follow the links to support these organizations’ vital work.

Oregon Food Bank

Partners for a Hunger Free Oregon

Oregon Community Foundation

Portland Rescue Mission

Salvation Army

Northwest Community Action Center

# # #

About the Pacific Power Foundation

The Pacific Power Foundation is a subsidiary of the PacifiCorp Foundation, one of the largest utility-endowed foundations in the United States. The foundation was created in 1988 by PacifiCorp, an electric utility serving 1.9 million customers in six Western states as Pacific Power (Oregon, Washington and California) and Rocky Mountain Power (Utah, Wyoming and Idaho). The foundation’s mission, through charitable investments, is to support the growth and vitality of the communities served by Pacific Power. For more information, visit www.pacificpower.net/foundation.


Pacific Power crews practice social distancing and request cooperation of the public
Pacific Power - 04/02/20 10:10 AM

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media Hotline: (800) 570-5838

PORTLAND, Ore. (April 2, 2020) — As an essential service provider, Pacific Power employees are practicing social distancing while continuing to provide reliable power to all customers during the COVID-19 public health emergency. Although our field employees always appreciate a friendly wave, the company reminds the public of the importance of keeping a safe and social distance while they work to maintain critical electrical networks.

During this unprecedented time, our business plans may be modified to meet compliance obligations, customer requests and power restoration. We are taking steps to minimize any interruptions of service. However, at infrequent times, planned interruptions may be required to improve network performance. In these situations, the company will make every effort to provide advance notification in an effort to keep the community safe and to practice social distancing. The company will also continue to suspend disconnections for non-payment, as previously announced.

While our field personnel are the most visible employees, they are not alone in serving you during this time of crisis. They are backed up by thousands of employees who are working in the six western states served by Pacific Power and its sister utility, Rocky Mountain Power, based in Utah. 

If you have questions about your electric service or your account, call us 24/7 at 888-221-7070.

As part of PacifiCorp, Pacific Power is part of a broad geographic footprint that serves nearly 2 million customers in six states, operates the largest grid in the West that crosses ten states and coordinates with neighboring utilities and grid operators to plan for, prepare, and respond to all hazards that could potentially impact the energy grid—including a pandemic—with our partners in government at the local, state and federal levels. The company is following the recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and coordinating with state and local emergency management leaders.

We are dedicated to serving you in this crisis and know that working together we will get through this uncertain time.

# # #


Federal
BLM releases draft plan to further efforts to conserve and restore sagebrush communities in the Great Basin
Bureau of Land Management Ore. & Wash. - 04/03/20 10:36 AM

Draft plan builds on fuel breaks construction in California, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Washington

 

BOISE, Idaho – Today, the Bureau of Land Management released the Draft Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) for Fuels Reduction and Rangeland Restoration in the Great Basin. This Draft PEIS is intended to further efforts to conserve and restore sagebrush communities within a 223 million-acre area that includes portions of Idaho, Oregon, Washington, California, Nevada and Utah. This plan works in tandem with the BLM’s efforts to construct up to 11,000 miles of fuel breaks in the Great Basin that was finalized by the publication of a Notice of Availability of a Record of Decision on Thursday, April 2.

 

“Conserving and restoring sagebrush communities in the Great Basin that people rely on for their livelihoods and recreation, and that wildlife depend on for habitat, is a top priority of the BLM,” said Deputy Director, Policy and Programs, Bureau of Land Management William Perry Pendley. Constructing fuel breaks and reducing fuels to decrease the risk of large and severe wildfires, and implementing rangeland restoration treatments, is critical to maintain the remaining sagebrush communities in the region.”  

 

The Trump Administration has prioritized active management of the nation’s public lands as provided in Executive Order 13855 and Secretary's Order 3372, which establish a meaningful and coordinated framework for ensuring the protection of people, communities, and natural resources. Implementation of both Orders is a priority for reducing the risks of deadly and destructive wildfires.

 

Sagebrush communities in the Great Basin are a vital part of Western working landscapes and are home to over 350 species of plants and wildlife. Intact sagebrush communities are disappearing within the Great Basin due to increased large and severe wildfires, the spread of invasive annual grasses, and the encroachment of pinyon-juniper. The Great Basin region is losing sagebrush communities faster than they can reestablish naturally. Approximately 45% of the historical range of sagebrush has been lost. Fuels reduction and rangeland restoration treatments can reduce fire severity, increase sagebrush communities’ resistance to invasive annual grasses and improve their ability to recover after wildfires.

 

The Preferred Alternative outlined in the Draft Fuels Reduction and Rangeland Restoration PEIS analyzes a full suite of manual, chemical and mechanical tools, including prescribed fire, seeding, and targeted grazing to reduce fuels and conserve and restore sagebrush communities. When finalized, the PEIS will not authorize any specific fuels reduction or rangeland restoration projects. Instead, it will analyze common elements of fuels reduction and rangeland restoration projects. Local offices can use this information to comply with National Environmental Policy Act requirements when planning and analyzing specific projects, allowing for more rapid implementation.

 

An electronic copy of the Draft PEIS and associated documents is available for public comment for 60 days on the BLM Land Use Planning and NEPA register at https://go.usa.gov/xdfgV

If you are unable to access the documents online and would like a paper copy, please contact the project staff by email at LM_PEIS_Questions@blm.gov">BLM_PEIS_Questions@blm.gov or phone at (208) 373-3824.

 

Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, the BLM will provide opportunities for the public to gain additional information, and ask questions, about the Draft PEIS virtually instead of through in-person public meetings. Links to virtual public meeting materials will be available on the BLM Land Use Planning and NEPA register by April 18 at https://go.usa.gov/xdfgV

Members of the public will be able to access the material at their convenience and can email questions to the project staff at LM_PEIS_Questions@blm.gov">BLM_PEIS_Questions@blm.gov

 

-BLM-

 

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. In fiscal year 2018, the diverse activities authorized on BLM-managed lands generated $105 billion in economic output across the country. This economic activity supported 471,000 jobs and contributed substantial revenue to the U.S. Treasury and state governments, mostly through royalties on minerals. 


BLM announces availability of the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the Tri-state Fuel Breaks Project
Bureau of Land Management Ore. & Wash. - 04/03/20 9:40 AM

Vale, Ore. and Boise, Idaho – The Bureau of Land Management is announcing the availability of a Final Environmental Impact Statement for the Tri-state Fuel Breaks Project, an effort to reduce flammable vegetation adjacent to roadways. Fuel breaks provide safe anchor points for firefighters and strategic opportunities to more effectively limit the spread of wildfires.

 

This project is part of a larger national wildfire reduction strategy guided by President Trump’s Executive Order 13855 – Promoting Active Management of America’s Forests, Rangelands, and Other Federal Lands to Improve Conditions and Reduce Wildfire Risk, as well as Secretary’s Order 3372 – Reducing Wildfire Risks on Department of the Interior Land through Active Management.

The project area consists of about 3.6 million acres of land within Malheur County, Oregon, and Owyhee County, Idaho. Wildfires are the primary threat to this region’s sagebrush-steppe habitat, one of the largest strongholds for Greater sage-grouse. This landscape-level project supports both sagebrush-dependent wildlife and traditional land uses, such as ranching and recreation. This strategic system of fuel breaks will integrate with existing fuel breaks in northeastern Nevada to improve firefighting efficiency. 

“The Tri-state Fuel Breaks Project will provide wildland firefighters with additional opportunities to contain wildfires and reduce impacts to working landscapes and wildlife habitat,” said BLM Deputy Director for Policy and Programs William Perry Pendley. “These fuel breaks will also improve safety for first responders, including Rangeland Fire Protection Associations and others in the firefighting community.”

The Final EIS outlines five alternatives, including a No Action Alternative (no fuel breaks). Under the four action alternatives, fuel breaks would only be implemented alongside existing roads and would extend up to 200 feet on both sides of roadways on BLM-administered lands.  Fire suppression experts identified roads based on their strategic importance for accessing and responding to wildland fires.

The Final EIS introduces the preferred alternative, Alternative 5, which proposes a strategic fuel break network that addresses impacts to wildlife and cultural resources based on the analysis in the Draft EIS and comments received during the comment period. This alternative modifies the fuel break network from routes analyzed in the Draft EIS under Alternatives 2, 3, and 4. The preferred alternative would result in a fuel break network of 47,213 acres along 987 miles of existing roads.

The 30-day availability period in which the public can review the Final EIS begins April 3, 2020, with the EPA’s publication of a Notice of Availability in the Federal Register. The Final EIS and supporting information is available online at https://go.usa.gov/xPruu (case sensitive). If you are unable to access the documents online and would like a paper copy, please contact the BLM Boise District Office at 208-384-3300.

-BLM–

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The agency’s mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. Diverse activities authorized on these lands generated $96 billion in sales of goods and services throughout the American economy in fiscal year 2017. These activities supported more than 468,000 jobs. 


Interior Improves Strategies to Combat Wildfires across 223 Million Acres in the Great Basin
Bureau of Land Management Ore. & Wash. - 04/01/20 11:46 AM

BLM to strategically implement 11,000 miles of fuel breaks across a 223-million acre area in California, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Utah and Washington

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt signed a final decision to construct and maintain a system of up to 11,000 miles of strategically placed fuel breaks to control wildfires within a 223 million- acre area in portions of California, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Utah and Washington.

Local Bureau of Land Management district and field offices will use manual, chemical and mechanical treatments, including prescribed fire, seeding and targeted grazing, to construct fuel breaks along roads and rights-of-way on BLM-administered lands. The fuel breaks will minimize new disturbance and wildlife habitat fragmentation and maximize accessibility for wildland firefighters.

“This is a major step in fulfilling the President’s commitment to western communities by implementing more effective wildfire treatments that will better protect Americans, their property and their lands,” said Secretary Bernhardt.

The BLM has extensively documented that fuel breaks and other types of fuel treatments are effective. Since 2002, the agency has assessed more than 1,400 fuel breaks and other types of fuels treatments that intersect with wildfires and determined that 79% of fuel breaks are effective in helping to control wildfires and that 84% are effective in helping to change fire behavior.

Intact sagebrush communities are disappearing within the Great Basin due to increased large and severe wildfires, the spread of invasive annual grasses and the encroachment of pinyon-juniper. The sagebrush communities in the Great Basin are home to over 350 species of plants and wildlife and are a vital part of western working landscapes. Approximately 45% of the historical range of sagebrush has been lost.

“Constructing a system of fuel breaks is a critical first step to reduce the risk of more catastrophic wildfires in the remaining intact sagebrush communities, but we can’t stop there,” said Deputy Director of Policy William Perry Pendley. “Fuel breaks will be most effective when combined with fuels reduction and rangeland restoration treatments and we’ll soon release a draft plan to provide for those in the Great Basin as well.”

Fuels reduction and rangeland restoration treatments can reduce fire severity, increase sagebrush communities’ resistance to invasive annual grasses and improve their ability to recover after wildfires. Today’s Record of Decision for the Final Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement for Fuel Breaks in the Great Basin was based on public input through an open comment period.

The PEIS does not authorize any specific projects. Local BLM district and field offices within the Great Basin will use the PEISs to comply with National Environmental Policy Act requirements when planning and analyzing specific fuel break, fuels reduction and rangeland restoration projects to allow for more rapid implementation.

An electronic copy of the ROD, the Final PEIS for Fuel Breaks in the Great Basin and associated documents are available at https://go.usa.gov/xnQcG.

Attachment: Information on Great Basin fuel breaks and how they are effective for combating wildfires in the region. Prepared by the Bureau of Land Management. Can also be found on BLM's website.

 

About the U.S. Department of the Interior

The Department of the Interior conserves and manages the Nation’s natural resources and cultural heritage for the benefit and enjoyment of the American people, provides scientific and other information about natural resources and natural hazards to address societal challenges and create opportunities for the American people, and honors the Nation’s trust responsibilities or special commitments to American Indians, Alaska Natives and affiliated island communities to help them prosper.




Attached Media Files: Information on Great Basin fuel breaks and how they are effective for combating wildfires in the region.

Department of Justice Makes $850 Million Available to Public Safety Agencies to Aid COVID-19 Response
U.S. Attorney's Office - District of Oregon - 04/03/20 10:14 AM

PORTLAND—This week, the Department of Justice announced that it is making $850 million available to help public safety agencies respond to the challenges posed by the outbreak of COVID-19. State, local and tribal law enforcement agencies in Oregon are eligible to receive nearly $10 million in supplemental funding.

The Coronavirus Emergency Supplemental Funding program, authorized by the recent stimulus legislation passed by the Congress and signed by President Trump, will allow eligible state, local and tribal governments to apply immediately to receive these critical funds. The department is moving quickly to make awards, with the goal of having funds available within days.

“In a matter of weeks, I have seen countless examples from across our state and country of law enforcement officers and other public safety professionals going far above and beyond their regular duties to serve our communities in this time of great need,” said U.S. Attorney Billy J. Williams. “I’m pleased to join the department in announcing this much needed funding and will do everything in my power to expedite its distribution to eligible law enforcement agencies here in Oregon.”

“This is an unprecedented moment in our nation’s history and an especially dangerous one for our front-line law enforcement officers, corrections officials, and public safety professionals,” said Office of Justice Programs Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Katharine T. Sullivan. “We are grateful to the Congress for making these resources available and for the show of support this program represents.”

The solicitation, posted by the Bureau of Justice Assistance in the Justice Department’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP), will remain open for at least 60 days and be extended as necessary. OJP will fund applicants on a rolling basis as applications are received. Funds may be used to hire personnel, pay overtime costs, purchase protective equipment and supplies, address correctional inmates’ medical needs and defray expenses related to the distribution of resources to hard-hit areas, among other activities. Grant funds may be applied retroactively to Jan. 20, 2020, subject to federal supplanting rules.

2019 State and Local Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant Program recipient agencies are candidates for direct emergency funding. A complete list of jurisdictions eligible for direct funding and their allocations can be found at https://bja.ojp.gov/program/fy20-cesf-allocations.

Jurisdictions not eligible for direct funding are advised to contact the Oregon Criminal Justice Commission to determine how they can receive funding through the state distribution.

For more information about the Coronavirus Emergency Supplemental Funding program, please visit https://bja.ojp.gov/funding/opportunities/bja-2020-18553. For more information about the Office of Justice Programs, please visit https://www.ojp.gov/.

The year 2020 marks the 150th anniversary of the Department of Justice. Learn more about the history of our agency at www.Justice.gov/Celebrating150Years.

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Attached Media Files: PDF Release

Gresham Man Indicted for Portland Area Identity Theft Crimes
U.S. Attorney's Office - District of Oregon - 04/02/20 4:33 PM

PORTLAND, Ore.—U.S. Attorney Billy J. Williams announced today that a Gresham, Oregon man has been indicted for stealing financial and identification documents from dozens of people throughout the Portland Metropolitan Area.

Robert Loren Finanders, 39, is charged in a nine-count indictment unsealed today with aggravated identity theft, counterfeit access device fraud, illegal possession of device-making equipment, and felon in possession of a firearm.

According to court documents, for at least the last year, Finanders is alleged to have stolen financial and identification documents for approximately 100 people in order to steal money from them and from local businesses. Investigators believe Finanders spent tens of thousands of dollars using stolen credit cards and other personal information. Some of the stolen identities appear to have been obtained by breaking into cars to steal wallets and purses.

The Portland Police Bureau’s (PPB) East Precinct Street Crimes Unit began investigating Finanders in late September 2019 after a fraudulent Oregon driver’s license in the name of an adult victim was found during an arrest. The license had Finanders’ photo on it in place of the named victim. Investigators learned that around the same time, police officers in Bend, Oregon had arrested Finanders and a co-conspirator after receiving a report of a person ordering food at restaurant using a stolen credit card.

Bend police searched a vehicle being driven by Finanders’ co-conspirator and found a passport, W2s, and a retail credit card matching the name of the victim whose stolen driver’s license was recovered by PPB. While searching a Bend hotel room shared by Finander and his co-conspirator, officers recovered W2s in the name of another victim and a victim profile notebook.

As the investigation continued, PPB officers linked Finanders to additional identity theft crimes in Portland, Gresham, and Lake Oswego, Oregon. On January 22, 2020, a search warrant was executed at a residence shared by Finanders and his co-conspirator. Officers seized stolen profiles for more than 80 individuals; dozens of stolen and fraudulent identification and personal documents including passports, government-issued identification cards, and driver’s licenses; an embosser; a card reader; stolen mail; additional victim profile notebooks; three handguns; a dismantled AR-15; body armor; evidence of drug trafficking; and other items.

On March 12, 2020, a federal grand jury in Portland indicted Finanders in a sealed nine-count indictment. On April 1, 2020, he was arrested by PPB. Finanders made his first appearance in federal court today. A three-day jury trial scheduled to begin on June 2, 2020. The magistrate court took under advisement the issue of whether to detain Finanders pending trial.

This case was investigated by the PPB East Precinct Street Crimes Unit with assistance from Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) and the U.S Postal Inspection Service. It is being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Oregon.

An indictment is only an accusation of a crime, and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

The year 2020 marks the 150th anniversary of the Department of Justice. Learn more about the history of the department at www.Justice.gov/Celebrating150Years.

# # #




Attached Media Files: PDF Release

The Dalles Man Sentenced to Seven Years in Federal Prison for Transporting and Possessing Child Pornography
U.S. Attorney's Office - District of Oregon - 04/02/20 2:51 PM

PORTLAND, Ore.—Jonathan David Murphy, 42, of The Dalles, Oregon, was sentenced today to seven years in federal prison and five years’ supervised release for transporting and possessing child pornography.

According to court documents, in 2017, local and federal law enforcement conducted undercover investigations of online peer-to-peer file sharing programs being used to exchange images of child pornography. Three separate investigations led investigators to an internet protocol (IP) address registered to a home Murphy shared with his fiancée in The Dalles.

In June 2018, investigators executed a federal search warrant at the residence and Murphy consented to an interview. Murphy admitted to using uTorrent, a peer-to-peer file sharing network, to download and share child pornography.

On February 27, 2020, Murphy pleaded guilty to one count each of transportation and possession of child pornography. After his release from prison, Murphy will be required to register as a sex offender.

This case was investigated by the FBI with assistance from the Wasco County Sheriff’s Office and was prosecuted by Natalie Wight, Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon.

Anyone who has information about the physical or online exploitation of children are encouraged to call the FBI at (503) 224-4181 or submit a tip online at tips.fbi.gov.

Federal law defines child pornography as any visual depiction of sexually explicit conduct involving a minor. It is important to remember child sexual abuse material depicts actual crimes being committed against children. Not only do these images and videos document victims’ exploitation and abuse, but when shared across the internet, child victims suffer re-victimization each time the image of their abuse is viewed. To learn more, please visit the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children’s website at www.missingkids.org.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.

# # #




Attached Media Files: PDF Release

U.S. Attorney Invites Local Nominations for Attorney General's Distinguished Service in Policing Award
U.S. Attorney's Office - District of Oregon - 04/02/20 11:22 AM

PORTLAND—U.S. Attorney Billy J. Williams announced today that the Department of Justice is requesting local nominations for the fourth annual Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service in Policing. The nomination period is open now and will close on Friday, April 24, 2020 at 5pm PDT.

The Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service in Policing recognizes state, local, or tribal sworn, rank-and-file police officers, deputies, and troopers for exceptional efforts and innovations in community policing, criminal investigations, and field operations.

“Law enforcement is the toughest job in America. The challenges our officers face on a daily basis are more complex, more difficult, and more extensive than ever before,” said Attorney General William P. Barr. “We are grateful for every man and woman in blue for their dedication and sacrifice. Among those who have answered the call of public service, several individuals in the past year performed in ways that surpassed even the highest expectations of the profession. I look forward to recognizing these individuals with the fourth annual Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service in Policing.”

“Serving alongside state, local, and tribal law enforcement officers, deputies, and troopers in Oregon has been the highest honor of my career,” said U.S. Attorney Williams. “It is entirely fitting that we should recognize the sacrifices they make on a daily basis to keep our communities safe and protect the rights we hold dear as Americans. I look forward to joining Attorney General Barr in recognizing the recipients of this distinguished award.”

Nominations may be submitted by the potential recipient’s supervisors, coworkers, or members of their local community. Nominations may include references and URL links to news sources and promotional or other materials that describe or substantiate the activity, program, or initiative for which the nominee is being nominated. Please note: nominees must have been in a non-supervisory position at the time the nominated event, activity, and/or program occurred to be an eligible candidate for this award.

Nominations must be submitted through an online form. The online application will direct the nominating individuals to complete the following fields:

  1. Name and rank of nominee(s) (must be rank-and-file officers, deputies, or troopers in a nonsupervisory position), the lead agency name, and the size of population served by the agency
  2. Name and affiliation of the nominating individual
  3. Nomination category for the action(s), program(s), or initiative(s) for which the nominee(s) is being nominated (Criminal Investigations, Field Operations, or Innovations in Policing)
  4. A detailed description of the specific action(s), program(s), or initiative(s) of the nominee(s) for which s/he is being nominated
  5. Agency point of contact information

Nominations must be submitted by 5pm PDT on Friday, April 24, 2020. In the event that agencies or other nominating parties are unable to access the online nomination form, nomination letters may be sent via email. The nomination letter should be no longer than three pages and should include all of the fields listed above. Nominations submitted in letter format must be sent via email to ds@usdoj.gov">dojpolicingawards@usdoj.gov by 5pm PDT on Friday, April 24, 2020.

Detailed information regarding the nomination process for this award is available at www.justice.gov/ag/policing-award.

Please direct all general inquiries to ds@usdoj.gov">dojpolicingawards@usdoj.gov.

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Attached Media Files: PDF Release

IRS: Do Not Fall Victim to a COVID-19 Scam
U.S. Attorney's Office - District of Oregon - 04/02/20 8:59 AM

Beware of scammers trying to get your personal information or your COVID-19 Economic Impact Payment!

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will begin to distribute COVID-19 Economic Impact Payments in a matter of weeks. For most Americans, this will be a direct deposit into your bank account. For the unbanked, elderly or other groups that have traditionally received tax refunds via paper check, they will receive their economic impact payments in this manner as well.

With any good news story from the IRS, comes an opportunity for criminals and scammers to take advantage of the American public.

  • Scammers may try to get you to sign over your check to them.
  • Scammers may use this as an opportunity to get you to “verify” your filing information in order to receive your money, using your personal information to file false tax returns in an identity theft scheme.

Between these two schemes, everyone receiving an economic impact payment is at risk.

The Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI) is working tirelessly alongside our civil counterparts and law enforcement partners to identify scams and halt wrongdoers from taking advantage of the American people. “Taxpayers should be extra vigilant for unsolicited phone calls or emails concerning their economic impact payments,” said Justin Campbell, Special Agent in Charge of the Seattle Field Office for IRS-CI. “The IRS will not call or email you about your payment. IRS-Criminal Investigation is stepping up our efforts in coordination with the Department of Justice to aggressively investigate anyone that seeks to defraud our community members during this crisis.”

“We are aware of instances of consumer fraud stemming from the COVID-19 public health emergency. While Americans work to protect themselves and their loved ones from the threat of COVID-19, some individuals are actively trying to profit off of this emergency,” said U.S. Attorney Billy J. Williams. “If you or someone you know believe you’ve been the target or victim of an outbreak-related fraud scheme, please contact law enforcement immediately.”

Top Line Message from the Internal Revenue Service


The IRS will deposit your economic impact payment into the direct deposit account your previously provide on your tax return (or, in the alternative, send you a paper check). The IRS will not call and ask you to verify your payment details. Do not give out your bank account, debit account, or PayPal account information – even if someone claims it is necessary to get your economic impact payment. Beware of this scam.

If you receive a call, do not engage with scammers or thieves. Just hang up. If you receive texts or emails claiming that you can get your money faster by sending personal information or clicking on links, delete them. Do not click on any links in those emails.

Reports are also swirling about bogus checks. If you receive a “check” in the mail now, it’s fraud – it will take the Treasury Department a few weeks to distribute the payments. If you receive a “check” for an odd amount (especially one with cents), or a check that requires that you verify the check online or by calling a number, it’s fraud.

Beware of Scams and Schemes


IRS-Impersonation Telephone Scams

An aggressive and sophisticated phone scam targeting taxpayers, including recent immigrants, have been making the rounds throughout the country. Callers claim to be employees of the IRS, but are not. Victims are told they owe money to the IRS and it must be paid promptly through a pre-loaded debit card or wire transfer. If the victim refuses to cooperate, they are then threatened with arrest, deportation or suspension of a business or driver’s license. Or, victims may be told they have a refund due to try to trick them into sharing private information.

With COVID-19 scams, they may urge you to pay this fake “debt” with your economic impact check. For those who receive an actual check, they may ask you to endorse it and forward to them for “payment of past debts.”

Remember:  Scammer Change Tactics – Variations of the IRS impersonation scam continue year-round and they tend to peak when scammers find prime opportunities to strike – like the new economic impact check being sent.

Surge in Email, Phishing and Malware Schemes

Scam emails are designed to trick taxpayers into thinking these are official communications from the IRS, tax industry professionals or tax software companies. These phishing emails ask taxpayers about a wide range of topics – related to refunds, filing status, ordering transcripts, and verifying PIN information – in order to steal your personal information or file tax returns.

When people click on links from these phishing emails, they are taken to sites designed to imitate an official-looking website, such as IRS.gov. The sites may also carry malware, which can infect people’s computers to steal their files or record their keystrokes.

Also be aware of email phishing scams that appear to be from the IRS and include a link to a bogus web site intended to mirror the official IRS web site. These emails contain the direction “you are to update your IRS e-file immediately.” The emails mention USA.gov and IRSgov (without a dot between “IRS” and “gov”). Don’t get scammed. These emails are not from the IRS.

Don’t be a victim! Visit www.irs.gov or www.irs.gov/coronavirus

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Attached Media Files: PDF Release

State
DPSST Board on Public Safety Standards and Training MEETING SCHEDULED
Ore. Dept. of Public Safety Standards and Training - 04/03/20 10:35 AM

For Immediate Release                                        

April 23, 2020

Contact:                Theresa Janda
                                503-373-1553

Notice of Regular Meeting

The Board on Public Safety Standards & Training will hold a regular meeting at 9 a.m. on April 23, 2020.  The meeting will be held by Video/Teleconference.  The meeting is accessible to persons with disabilities. A request for an interpreter for the deaf or hearing impaired or for other accommodations for persons with disabilities should be made before the meeting by calling the contact listed above. 

 

Please call the number above to request teleconferencing information.

 If you dial-in for the meeting, please mute your phone unless you are addressing the group.  Doing so will enable you to hear the meeting more effectively.

1.  Introductions

2.  Minutes

       Approve minutes from the January 23, 2020 Meeting.

3.  Fire Policy Committee

a. Fire Policy Committee Update – James Oeder, Chair

A. Wyatt Bruckner DPSST#F37318 (Lowell RFPD) - Revoke

        Recommended to the Board by a vote of 8/3 by the FPC on October 24, 2019.

B. Damon H. Faust DPSST#F35483 (Estacada RFPD #69) – Revoke and Deny Certifications

Recommended to the Board in a vote of 9/2 by the FPC on October 24, 2019.    

C. Andrew Flood DPSST#F38423 (Jefferson County Fire District #1) – Deny

     Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the FPC on October 24, 2019.

D. David Lloyd DPSST#F16832 (Portland Fire & Rescue) – Revoke

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the FPC on October 24, 2019.

E. Trenton McGahan DPSST#F38189 (Charleston RFPD) – Not Deny

Recommended to the Board in a vote of 7 to 4 by the FPC on October 24, 2019.

F. Bjorn Petersen DPSST#36309 (Hines Fire Department) – Deny

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the FPC on October 24, 2019.

G. James T. Poore DPSST#F16053 (No Agency affiliation) – Revoke

 Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the FPC on October 24, 2019.

H. Nickolus V. Stanger DPSST#F36220 (Netarts-Oceanside RFPD) – Deny

 Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the FPC on October 24, 2019

I. Jesse K. West DPSST#F18744 (Lane Fire Authority) – Revoke

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the FPC on October 24, 2019

4.  Criminal Justice Policy Committees

a. Police Policy Committee Update – John Teague, Chair

b. Telecommunications Policy Committee Update – Kelly Dutra, Chair

c. Corrections Policy Committee Update – Nadine Purington, Chair

d. Consent Agenda (The following items to be ratified by one vote)

A. Geremy Shull DPSST#43985 (Sherman County Sheriff’s Office) – Revoke

Recommended to the Board in a vote of 10/2 by the PPC on February 20, 2020.

B. Dixon Andrews DPSST#14829 (Gold Beach Police Department) – No Action

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the PPC on February 20, 2020.

C. Dezi Meza DPSST#41232 (Albany Police Department) – Revoke

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the PPC on February 20, 2020.

D. Matthew Morberg DPSST#40597 (Eugene Police Department) – Revoke

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the PPC on February 20, 2020

E. Caleb Saulo DPSST#59701 (Warm Springs Police Department) – No Action

Recommended to the Board in a vote of 10/2 by the PPC on February 20, 2020.

F. Dustin Watson DPSST#34225 (Newport Police Department) – No Action

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the PPC on February 20, 2020.

G. Andrew Jackson DPSST#54783 (Polk County Sheriff’s Office) – No Action

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the CPC on February 12, 2020.

H. Devon Lindsey DPSST#56903 (Douglas County Sheriff’s Office) - Revoke

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the CPC on February 11, 2020.

I. Lucas Randleas DPSST#60182 (Grant County Sheriff’s Office) – Deny

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the CPC on February 11, 2020.

J. Timathy Thomason DPSST#54396 (Department of Corrections – TRCI) – Revoke

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the CPC on February 11, 2020

K. Trent Ingram DPSST#60342 (Department of Corrections – EOCI) – No Action

Recommended to the Board in a vote of 11/2 by the CPC on February 11, 2020

L. Christopher Matson DPSST#60104 (Department of Corrections – TRCI) – No Action

Recommended to the Board in a vote of 11/3 by the CPC on February 11, 2020

M. Juan Ruiz DPSST#60370 (Department of Corrections – OSP) – No Action

Recommended to the Board in a vote of 11/1, plus one recusal by the CPC on February     11, 2020

N. Christopher Vines DPSST#60273 (Department of Corrections – SRCI) – No Action

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the CPC on February 11, 2020

O. Andrea Parker DPSST#38688 (Prineville Police Department) – Revoke

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the TPC on February 5, 2020

P. Kinsey Coyne DPSST#55676 (Washington County Consolidated Communications Agency) – Suspend

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote minus one recusal by the TPC on February 5, 2020

Q. Michael Downing DPSST#49155 (Baker County Sheriff’s Office) – Revoke

 Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote minus one recusal by the TPC on February 5, 2020

R. Heidi Elliott DPSST#59214 (American Medical Response) – Deny

Recommended to the Board in a 7/1 vote minus two recusals by the TPC on February 5, 2020

S. Angela Haltom DPSST#53236 (Harney County Sheriff’s Office) – No Action

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the TPC on February 5, 2020

T. OAR 259-008-0064 – Proposed Rule change – Approve

Adds First Aid & CPR Certification Requirements to DPSST Telecommunicator and EMD Maintenance.

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the TPC on February 5, 2020

U. OAR 259-008-0064 – Proposed Rule Change – Approve 

Housekeeping Amendments for Telecommunicator and EMD Maintenance

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the TPC on February 5, 2020

V. OAR 259-008-0005, 259-008-0020, 259-008-0025 and 259-008-0085 – Proposed Rule Changes – Approve

Establishes a firearms training requirement for armed parole & probation officers.

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the CPC on February 18, 2020

W. Fallen Law Enforcement Officer Memorial Wall Nomination, Hansford “Harry” Greenfield – Approve

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the PPC on February 20, 2020.

X. Committee Appointments

  • Lee Eby, Appointment to the CPC to replace Matthew Frohnert representing the OSJCC; 1st term effective 4/28/20.

5.  Private Security/Investigator Policy Committee

1.  Private Security Investigator Policy Committee Update – Thomas Thomas, Chair

A. OAR 259-060-0135 – Proposed Rule Change - Approve

Clarifying law enforcement experience applicable to the qualifications for certification as a Private Security instructor.

Recommended to the Board in a unanimous vote by the PSIPC on February 18, 2020.        

6. Annual Director’s Evaluation – Chair Patrick-Joling

7.  Director's Report - Director Gabliks

8.  Next Meeting Date:  July 23, 2020

Administrative Announcement

This is a public meeting, subject to the public meeting law and it will be recorded. Deliberation of issues will only be conducted by the Board on Public Safety Standards and Training members unless permitted by the Chair. Individuals who engage in disruptive behavior that impedes official business will be asked to stop being disruptive or leave the meeting. Additional measures may be taken to have disruptive individuals removed if their continued presence poses a safety risk to the other persons in the room or makes it impossible to continue the meeting.

## Background Information on the DPSST ##

The Department of Public Safety Standards and Training (DPSST) operates the Oregon Public Safety Academy which spans more than 235 acres in Salem. The Academy is nationally recognized for its innovative training programs and active stakeholder involvement. Eriks Gabliks serves as the Director, and Patricia Patrick-Joling, public member serves as the Chair of the Board. The department implements minimum standards established by the Board for the training and certification of more than 40,000 city, tribal, county and state law enforcement officers, corrections officers, parole and probation officers, fire service personnel, telecommunicators, emergency medical dispatchers and private security providers.

DPSST provides training to more than 25,000 students each year throughout Oregon and at the Oregon Public Safety Academy in Salem: certifies qualified officers at various levels from basic through executive; certifies qualified instructors; and reviews and accredits training programs throughout the state based on standards established by the Board.


Liora Sponko of Lane Arts Council named Community Arts Coordinator (Photo)
Oregon Arts Commission - 04/02/20 10:04 AM
Liora Sponko
Liora Sponko
http://www.flashalertnewswire.net/images/news/2020-04/1418/133032/thumb_Liora-Headshot-8x10.jpg

Salem, Oregon – Liora Sponko, the executive director of the Lane Arts Council, is the new Community Arts Coordinator for the Oregon Arts Commission. Sponko rose above a highly competitive field of candidates to succeed Brian Wagner in the position, responsible for supporting the statewide arts community in ensuring access to the arts for Oregonians.

“We are extremely proud to have Liora join our team,” said Brian Rogers, executive director of the Arts Commission. “Over the past nine years she has transformed the Lane Arts Council from a small arts services shop into a vibrant and flourishing force for the arts in Lane County. We are excited about the potential she brings to our statewide efforts to build capacity and support for arts organizations, especially during these times as communities plan to reconnect, hopefully in the near future.”

During her tenure at Lane Arts Council, Sponko has tripled the organizational budget, developed inclusive programming (Fiesta Cultural) and increased partnerships with the public and private sectors. Her responsibilities include major donor development and corporate sponsorships, grant oversight, budget management, partnership development, board development and community leadership. Lane Arts Council currently serves thousands of youth and community members through arts education, the First Friday ArtWalk, services for artists and building the arts and creative sector.

“As an arts administrator and grassroots community-builder for over two decades,” said Sponko, “I know the arts are essential to building thriving communities. I am eager to connect with communities throughout Oregon and support your work. The Community Arts Coordinator position is the exact combination of all of my passions and the perfect way for me to make a difference across the state.”

Sponko’s previous experience includes serving as a programs coordinator for the University of Oregon and development work for the nonprofits Community Center for the Performing Arts/WOW Hall and Womenspace. She has a master’s in International Peace and Development from Universitat Jaume I (Castellón, Spain) and a bachelor’s in sociology and Spanish from the University of California at Santa Barbara. She has received multiple certifications and awards, including a 2015 20 under 40 Blue Chip Award from the Eugene Register Guard recognizing young rising stars in the Lane County business community.

As Community Arts Coordinator, Sponko will manage the Arts Build Communities and Small Operating Support grant programs, in addition to providing counsel and technical assistance to arts organizations.

Sponko will join the Arts Commission team on Monday, April 20.

                   

The Oregon Arts Commission provides leadership, funding and arts programs through its grants, special initiatives and services. Nine commissioners, appointed by the Governor, determine arts needs and establish policies for public support of the arts. The Arts Commission became part of Business Oregon (formerly Oregon Economic and Community Development Department) in 1993, in recognition of the expanding role the arts play in the broader social, economic and educational arenas of Oregon communities. In 2003, the Oregon legislature moved the operations of the Oregon Cultural Trust to the Arts Commission, streamlining operations and making use of the Commission’s expertise in grantmaking, arts and cultural information and community cultural development. 

The Arts Commission is supported with general funds appropriated by the Oregon legislature and with federal funds from the National Endowment for the Arts as well as funds from the Oregon Cultural Trust. More information about the Oregon Arts Commission is available online at:  www.oregonartscommission.org.

 




Attached Media Files: Liora Sponko

Announcing the 2019 Tom Moan Honoree for Excellence in Child Welfare Casework
Oregon Department of Human Services - 03/30/20 4:24 PM

(Salem, Ore.) – As part of National Social Work Month in March, the Oregon Department of Human Services, Child Welfare Program named Dave Owens of Eugene, the 2019 Tom Moan Memorial Award. The annual award recognizes and promotes leadership and outstanding achievement by caseworkers in the field of child welfare.

“National Social Work month is a time to recognize that social work is more than social workers. Those who work to positively impact communities, families, youth, and children should be celebrated for their contributions to social change and development,” said Child Welfare Director Rebecca Jones Gaston.

The awardee is chosen through nominations from community organizations, Child Welfare employees, and organizational partners and will attend the National Association of Social Work Conference in Washington DC. All expenses for the travel are raised by DHS staff and the Tom Moan award committee. Moan was a career child welfare caseworker and administrator in Oregon.

This year’s winner, Owens, is a caseworker with 20 years of experience in Lane County. Owens was awarded to recognize his exceptional skill at family engagement, connections to community partners and the high level of respect he has from youth and families.

“We are exceptionally proud of Dave’s work serving strengthening Lane County’s children and families,” said Jones Gaston. “He honors the abilities and strengths of families as he works alongside them to address challenges. He is thoughtful and humble, and those he works with know he is not there to judge but to help.”

The National Association of Social Workers organizes Social Work Month to educate the public about the invaluable contributions of the profession. More information is available at www.socialworkmonth.org.

 


Federal changes temporarily increase access to food benefits
Oregon Department of Human Services - 03/30/20 11:27 AM

Oregonians who have difficulty finding work during the COVID-19 pandemic do not have to worry about losing their food benefits, due to changes included in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

Normally, benefits are only available for three months for people who are not working but are considered able to work. The act temporarily suspends Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) time limits for a subset of the SNAP population who are required to seek work as a condition of receiving benefits. The changes begin April 1, 2020 and ends the month after the Secretary of Health and Human Services declares the COVID-19 state of emergency is lifted.

“SNAP benefits play a critical role in helping Oregonians get by during difficult circumstances,” said Dan Haun, director of Self-Sufficiency Programs at the Oregon Department of Human Services. “This change ensures that food benefits remain available for the increasingly number of Oregonians losing jobs during this pandemic.”

"As business and schools close because of this public health crisis, Oregonians are losing work and wages. SNAP is there to help put food on the table," said Annie Kirschner, executive director of Hunger-Free Oregon. "By waiving SNAP time limits, more Oregonians can now focus on staying healthy, instead of the threat of hunger."

DHS announced last week that Oregonians statewide now can use their SNAP benefits online to buy groceries at Amazon or Wal-Mart, which support the physical distancing required by Governor Brown’s Stay Home Save Lives Executive Order. In addition, DHS is not requiring interviews for those who report having no household income. Oregonians can apply for SNAP without visiting a DHS office. You can apply online at OHP.Oregon.gov.

"Whether you're experiencing job loss for the first time, or you've been struggling to make ends meet for a while, we want you to know about all the options open to you,” said Susannah Morgan, Oregon Food Bank CEO. “SNAP food assistance is our region's most effective defense against hunger — especially in times of crisis. It’s an important resource that can feed families and help prevent hunger from becoming yet another symptom of COV-19."  

What is SNAP?
SNAP is a federally funded program that offers nutrition assistance to low-income individuals and families. SNAP is the largest program in the domestic hunger safety net. In Oregon, individuals and families apply for SNAP benefits at Department of Human Services (DHS) and Area Agency on Aging (AAA) offices across the state.

Who is an Able-Bodied Adult Without Dependent (ABAWD)?
An ABAWD is an individual:

  • Age 18 but not yet 50; and
  • Does not have children under age 18 in their SNAP filing group.

What are SNAP time limits?
An ABAWD is limited to three months of SNAP benefits in a three-year period, unless the individual:

  • Is participating in work activities
  • Meets an allowable exemption, or
  • Lives in a waived area.

What does the suspension mean for SNAP customers?
While time limits are suspended, SNAP benefits will not be reduced or closed due to not meeting time limit work requirements.

Reporting requirements continue
ABAWDs still may report any changes that may increase their food benefits, such as loss of income or new allowable costs like rent or child care expenses. They are still required to report when their work hours drop below 20 hours per week, their income goes above a certain level, or if they have lottery or gambling winnings equal to or greater than $3,500.

Lost benefits in the past because of time limits?
If someone lost SNAP benefits due to time limit work requirements, they are encouraged to reapply. Apply online at: OHP.Oregon.Gov.

Questions?
SNAP customers can contact their local DHS or AAA office for more information. Find a local office at: oregon.gov/DHS/Offices/Pages/index.aspx

For other ways to connect with DHS, contact 211info:

Additional resources

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Attached Media Files: 2020-03/973/132928/SNAP_time_limits_suspended_Final.pdf

Today: Infection Preventionist to Offer Facebook Live Demonstration of PPE in Use at Lebanon Veterans' Home
Oregon Department of Veterans' Affairs - 04/02/20 12:00 PM

Personal protective equipment, or PPE, has become a major topic of conversation on the local, state and national levels as the global coronavirus pandemic continues to develop.

PPE is simply the gloves, masks, gowns and other equipment that nurses, doctors and care providers use to protect their patients and themselves from the spread of an infectious illness.

At 2 p.m. today, April 2, Infection Preventionist Monica Claflin will offer a live-streamed demonstration and explanation of the PPE used by care staff at the Oregon Veterans’ Home in Lebanon, which has seen 15 confirmed COVID-19 cases since March 11.

This demonstration will be staged at the Home, but attendance by the public and media will be virtual only due to the social distancing guidelines and lock-down protocols currently in place. It will be streamed live on the Lebanon Veterans’ Home Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/lebanonveteranshome.

Media questions may be sent in advance to Tyler Francke at .francke@state.or.us">tyler.francke@state.or.us. Media questions during the live event, which is expected to last only 15 minutes, may be texted to 971-239-6640.


Don't be fooled by scams involving job safety inspections related to COVID-19 (Photo)
Oregon Dept. of Consumer & Business Services - 04/02/20 3:44 PM
DCBS logo
DCBS logo
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(Salem) – As Oregon OSHA evaluates and inspects complaints about potential workplace hazards related to the coronavirus outbreak, the division wants employers and workers to keep an important message in mind: Do not be fooled by scammers.

The division has received multiple reports of fraudulent activity. The activity includes people showing up at job sites and pretending to be division compliance officers. The fraudsters attempt to issue thousands of dollars in fines and demand immediate cash payments.

That is not how Oregon OSHA operates.

“It is deeply troubling and unfortunate that scammers see such challenging times as opportunities to take advantage, and hurt people and businesses,” said Michael Wood, administrator for Oregon OSHA. “We strongly urge employers and workers to take all precautions. When something seems off, it likely is.”

Here are some things to keep in mind about how Oregon OSHA operates:

  • At the beginning of an inspection – when compliance officers introduce themselves to owner representatives, operators, or agents in charge at workplaces – they present their credentials. 
  • If the division conducts an inspection and identifies violations, its normal citation processing takes at least two weeks following the closing of an inspection. The actual penalties for any particular violation involves a number of factors. There is never a demand for immediate cash payment of a proposed fine.

If you are unsure if someone showing up at your job site is an Oregon OSHA employee, call 503-378-3272 or 800-922-2689 (toll-free) (inside Oregon only).

For more information, contact Oregon OSHA: https://osha.oregon.gov/Pages/contactus.aspx

For more information about Oregon OSHA workplace guidance and resources related to the coronavirus outbreak, visit https://osha.oregon.gov/Pages/re/covid-19.aspx

If you believe you have been a victim of a COVID-19 scam, visit https://www.justice.gov/coronavirus to report it to the U.S. Department of Justice.

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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.

The Department of Consumer and Business Services is Oregon's largest business regulatory and consumer protection agency. For more information, go to www.oregon.gov/dcbs/.  

 




Attached Media Files: DCBS logo , Oregon OSHA logo

Don't be fooled by these three coronavirus scams
Oregon Dept. of Consumer & Business Services - 03/31/20 9:11 AM

Salem – April Fools' Day is near and the Oregon Division of Financial Regulation wants to make sure no one is fooled by three coronavirus scams.

Scam No. 1 –Avoid scams claiming to have a top-secret vaccine or miracle cure, or claiming to offer government assistance or economic relief. These false claims are scams intended to scare people into sharing their personal information.

  • Do not open emails, click links, or open attachments from anyone you do not know
  • Do not share your personal or financial information with anyone you do not know

Scam No. 2 – Avoid scams requiring downloads to view coronavirus maps. This is an attempt to get people to download malware onto their device.

Scam No. 3 – Avoid scams using the market downturn to convince people to invest in a product with a guaranteed or very high return, including investments tied to COVID-19, such as medical supplies, vaccines, and other treatments. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true it probably is. Ask three questions before making any investment:

“We are fortunate to have some great companies doing all they can to help consumers right now,” said Andrew Stolfi, administrator of the Division of Financial Regulation. “We want all Oregonians to make sure they are relying only on trusted sources for the information they need to keep their families safe and healthy during this outbreak.”

The division has set up a COVID-19 insurance and financial services page to help answer consumer questions. For more information on investment schemes related to COVID-19, visit the North American Securities Administrators Association news page.

If you believe you have been a victim of a COVID-19 scam, visit justice.gov/coronavirus to report it to the U.S. Department of Justice.

If you have a question or concern about an investment product or advisor, contact the Division of Financial Regulation advocates at 888-877-4894 (toll-free) or email .financialserviceshelp@oregon.gov">dfr.financialserviceshelp@oregon.gov.

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About DCBS: The Department of Consumer and Business Services is Oregon's largest business regulatory and consumer protection agency. For more information, visit 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 http://dfr.oregon.gov/Pages/index.aspx.

 


DOC's First Adult in Custody Tests Positive for COVID-19
Oregon Dept. of Corrections - 04/02/20 9:23 PM

The Oregon Department of Corrections (DOC) today announced the first adult in custody (AIC) within the Oregon state prison system to test positive for novel coronavirus (COVID-19). The patient is in stable condition and is being treated on-site.

The patient is at Santiam Correctional Institution in Salem, Oregon, and will soon move to an institution with 24-hour nursing care.  The positive test result was received April 2. Additional details cannot be shared about his protected health information.

If an AIC is showing signs and symptoms of influenza or COVID-19, including fever, cough, and shortness of breath, they will be tested. DOC uses the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) guidance on appropriate criteria for testing. Those being tested and/or awaiting results are on respiratory isolation. 

“We have been preparing for the spread of COVID-19 into our institutions, worksites and Community Corrections offices since the beginning of March,” said Director Colette S. Peters. “Even with all of our preventative measures, like restricting visiting, social distancing, and suspending any programs, we knew the first case was inevitable because our institutions are microcosm of our communities. Our agency has focused on this virus and how best to reduce the impact inside our institutions. The necessary protocols are in place to protect our employees and the adults in our custody as best we can. This is a difficult time for all Oregonians, including those in our care. I know the family and friends of the adults in custody are extremely concerned for their loved ones. I can assure you, we are taking all necessary measures to operate safe and secure institutions where people can work and live and stay healthy.”

SCI has taken several steps to reduce the potential spread of COVID-19. These actions include: suspension of visiting and volunteer services, canceled group activities, house vulnerable AICs together, slowed down meal line in order to social distance. 

DOC is now contacting all people who entered the institution in the last seven days. All AIC’s will be screened and any presenting with symptoms will be tested for COVID-19. 

As people are tested and test results are returned, DOC will provide updated numbers on the DOC website. DOC is collaborating with our local public health officials, coordinating with the OHA, and following the CDC recommendations to prevent the spread COVID-19. DOC is following OHA’s guidance on long-term care facilities and law enforcement recommendations and CDC’s interim guidance on management of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in correctional and detention facilities.   

SCI is a minimum-security prison in Salem that houses approximately 480 AICs who are within four years of release. The facility concentrates on work opportunities, most of which are in the form of work crews contracting with state agencies, local organizations, and private industries within a 60-mile radius of Salem.


Snake River Correctional Institution reports in-custody death (Photo)
Oregon Dept. of Corrections - 04/02/20 11:33 AM
Steven P. Merry
Steven P. Merry
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An Oregon Department of Corrections (DOC) adult in custody, Steven Paul Merry, died the evening of April 1, 2020. Merry was incarcerated at Snake River Correctional Institution (SRCI) in Ontario and passed away in the infirmary, where he’d been on hospice since January. As with all in-custody deaths, the Oregon State Police have been notified. 

Merry entered DOC custody on January 19, 2017, from Douglas County with an earliest release date of February 3, 2027. Merry was 73 years old. Next of kin has been notified.  

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

SRCI is a multi-custody prison in Ontario that houses approximately 3,000 adults in custody. SRCI has multiple special housing units including disciplinary segregation, intensive management, infirmary (with hospice) with 24-hour nursing care, and an administrative segregation unit. SRCI participates in prison industries with Oregon Corrections Enterprises including a contact center, laundry, and sign shop. SRCI specializes in incentive housing, specialized housing, individuals with mental health/medical vulnerabilities, education and trades programs, cognitive and parenting programs, and institution work programs. SRCI opened in 1991 and is the largest correctional institution in the state.

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Attached Media Files: Steven P. Merry

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Record Initial Claims for Unemployment Benefits Continue in Oregon
Oregon Employment Department - 04/02/20 10:00 AM

During the week starting March 22, the Oregon Employment Department received 92,700 initial claims for Unemployment Insurance benefits. That represented a 21 percent increase from the previous record during the week starting March 15. By comparison, the agency received 4,900 initial claim filings during the week starting March 8. The Employment Department continues to take proactive steps to meet the unprecedented need for unemployment benefits, which is largely due to reduced hours and layoffs related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Initial Claims

The Employment Department has detailed information for 45,800 of the claims processed during the week starting March 22. The leisure and hospitality sector, which includes hotels and restaurants, saw the greatest number of initial claims for unemployment benefits (15,500). This reflects impacts of additional public health and safety measures related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Many initial claims also came from workers in health care and social assistance (7,600) and retail trade (4,600).

Multnomah (10,900), Washington (5,300), and Lane (4,200) were the counties with the largest number of claims. The largest percentage increases in initial claims over the week occurred in Harney and Tillamook counties. More initial claims data by industry and area can be found on the QualityInfo.org COVID-19 page (also see tables on next page).

Helping Oregonians

Over the past two weeks the Employment Department doubled the number of staff dedicated to taking claims, and is in the process of tripling it. The agency employees processing claims are doing so at a record rate. We also continue adding secure phone lines to take more calls while also protecting the personal information of those filing claims. Still, the truly unprecedented and sudden level of initial claims has caused delays and frustration for Oregonians who need our help, especially by phone.

The Employment Department encourages anyone who can file an online claim to do so. The agency’s website includes a video with step-by-step instructions for filing online claims specific to COVID-19 situations. Filing an initial or weekly claim online helps those who must file their claim by phone. Calls to follow up on the status of successfully filed claims also allows fewer new initial claims, which require the most time and work, to be received by phone. The Employment Department has started sending automatic confirmations for successfully filed claims with an e-mail address provided. Other automatic fixes and guidance, discussed in this video conversation, have been implemented to address common online claim errors and reduce the need for follow-up.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________

To file an online claim for unemployment benefits, go to Oregon.gov/employ or call 1-877-FILE-4-UI. For help finding jobs and training resources, contact your local WorkSource Oregon center or go to WorkSourceOregon.org.

Equal Opportunity program — auxiliary aids and services available upon request to individuals with disabilities. Contact: (503) 947-1794. For people who are deaf or hard of hearing, call 711 Telecommunications Relay Services.




Attached Media Files: 2020-04/930/133029/Press_Release_4.2.2020_63.pdf

Oregon reports 1 new COVID-19 death, 73 new COVID-19 cases
Oregon Health Authority - 04/03/20 2:17 PM

April 3, 2020

Media contacts: Oregon COVID-19 Joint Information Center (JIC) staff, 503-373-7872, media.COVID-19@state.or.us

Oregon reports 1 new COVID-19 death, 73 new COVID-19 cases

PORTLAND, Ore. — COVID-19 has claimed one more life in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll to 22, the Oregon Health Authority reported at 8 a.m. today.

Oregon Health Authority also reported 73 new cases of COVID-19 as of 8 a.m. today. The new COVID-19 cases reported today are in the following counties: Benton (2), Clackamas (5), Clatsop (1), Crook (1), Deschutes (4), Klamath (5), Malheur (1), Marion (14), Morrow (1), Multnomah (15), Polk (2), Washington (17), Yamhill (5). Oregon Health Authority reports new cases once a day on its website: www.healthoregon.org/coronavirus.

Oregon’s 22nd COVID-19 death is a 71-year-old man in Polk County, who tested positive on March 19 and died April 2 at Salem Hospital. He had underlying medical conditions.

OHA: Non-medical masks can supplement but not replace Stay Home, Save Lives.

With recent news that federal authorities may recommend wearing masks in public, Oregon Health Authority is reminding Oregonians that staying home and avoiding all non-essential contact with others continues to be the most important thing all of us can do to stay healthy and keep others healthy. And during moments where people must go out of the house, they should stay at least 6 feet apart from others at all times.

Before deciding whether to wear a mask, Oregon Health Authority recommends people keep two considerations central:

  • Medical masks should be reserved for health care providers who are on the front lines working with patients most likely to have COVID-19. We have had shortages of those masks – and it's critically important that our health care workers have the equipment they need to do their jobs.
  • Non-medical mask use (e.g., homemade fabric masks) does not replace the need to follow guidance to stay home and limit our contact with others. It does not replace frequent handwashing, avoiding touching the face, and staying away from people who are ill. These are the most important steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19 illness.

“We continue to stress that medical masks are essential for health care workers who are in close contact with someone who has COVID-19," said Paul Cieslak, MD, medical director for communicable diseases, OHA Public Health Division. "We need to preserve supplies of medical masks for our health care workers so they can stay safe as they work to keep all of us healthy. For the general public, homemade fabric masks, especially if well-made and well-fitting, may provide some benefit."

Wearing a fabric mask can help prevent the spread of infection to others when the mask is worn by someone who already is infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, particularly if the person is coughing. The mask may block some infectious droplets from spreading when someone with the infection coughs, sneezes and, to a lesser degree, speaks.

"The data do not tell us how much protection homemade cloth masks provide to the person wearing a homemade mask. For this reason, homemade and fabric masks should not be considered reliable protection; but they may provide some benefit," said Cieslak. “Above all, we continue to stress that the reliable tool we have right now to prevent the spread of COVID-19 is strict social distancing – as outlined in Governor Brown’s ‘Stay Home, Save Lives’ orders.”

Everyone, even people who are young and healthy, must stay home to slow the spread of COVID-19. Read more here about Governor Brown’s “Stay Home, Save Lives” orders. Read more here about OHA’s social distancing guidelines.

Changes in hospital reporting

COVID-19 hospital capacity data on today’s Daily Update, formerly labeled the Situation Status Report, or Sit Stat, is listed as “pending” due to data quality issues. OHA is working with its partner hospitals to improve the COVID-19 data reporting process so we can ensure the accuracy, consistency and timeliness of the underlying data. The state has paused our public reporting so OHA can provide additional technical assistance to hospital staff. OHA will resume public reporting of COVID-19 hospital capacity data as soon as we have achieved full compliance and consistency in data reporting across all sources.

Stay informed about COVID-19:

Oregon response: The Oregon Health Authority and Oregon Office of Emergency Management lead the state response.

United States response: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention leads the U.S. response.

Global response: The World Health Organization guides the global response.

 

 


Medical marijuana program Rules Advisory Committee cancels April 13 meeting
Oregon Health Authority - 04/03/20 7:53 AM

April 3, 2020

Media contact: Jonathan Modie, 971-246-9139, phd.communications@state.or.us

Medical marijuana program Rules Advisory Committee cancels April 13 meeting

What: A rules advisory committee meeting to discuss changes to the cannabis testing rules in Division 7 and 64 scheduled for April 13 is canceled. It will be rescheduled on a date to be determined.

Background: The Oregon Health Authority (OHA) is responsible for cannabis testing rules that apply to both medical and retail markets. All marijuana items intended to be sold at a dispensary or retail shop must have been sampled and tested according to the testing rules set by the Oregon Health Authority.

# # #


Oregon reports 2 new COVID-19 deaths, 90 new COVID-19 cases
Oregon Health Authority - 04/02/20 2:16 PM

April 2, 2020

Media contacts: OHA Joint Information Center (JIC) Staff, 503-373-7872, media.COVID-19@state.or.us

Oregon reports 2 new COVID-19 deaths, 90 new COVID-19 cases

PORTLAND, Ore.— COVID-19 has claimed 2 more lives in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll from 19 to 21, the Oregon Health Authority reported at 8 a.m. today.

Oregon Health Authority also reported 90 new cases of COVID-19 as of 8 a.m. today bringing the statewide total to 826. The new COVID-19 cases reported today are in the following counties: Benton (2), Clackamas (5), Deschutes (5), Hood River (1), Jackson (5), Josephine (2), Klamath (3), Lane (3), Lincoln (1), Marion (13), Union (2), Multnomah (26), Washington (22), and Yamhill (1). Oregon Health Authority reports new cases once a day on its website: www.healthoregon.org/coronavirus.

Oregon’s twentieth COVID-19 death is a 61-year-old man in Washington County, who tested positive on March 21, 2020, and died on April 1, 2020 at Tuality Healthcare. He had underlying medical conditions.

Oregon’s twenty-first COVID-19 death is a 91-year-old woman in Marion County, who tested positive on March 31, 2020, and died on April 1, 2020 at her residence. She had underlying medical conditions.

Update: The COVID-19 case data OHA publishes once a day on its website and shares once a day with the media are provisional and subject to change. A case reported yesterday as a Douglas County case was later determined to be a Lane County case. The total number of new cases in Lane County is 3 to reflect this change. However, the case moved from Douglas County to Lane County is not reflected in the total of new cases statewide for today.


Stay informed about COVID-19:

Oregon response: The Oregon Health Authority leads the state response.

United States response: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention leads the U.S. response.

Global response: The World Health Organization guides the global response.


Oregon reports 1 new COVID-19 death, 47 new COVID-19 cases; Latest COVID-19 projections show social distancing can cut coronavirus infections if Oregonians keep current measures in place into May
Oregon Health Authority - 04/01/20 2:22 PM

April 1, 2020

Media Contact: Oregon COVID-19 Joint Information Center (JIC) staff, 503-373-7872, media.COVID-19@state.or.us

Oregon reports 1 new COVID-19 death, 47 new COVID-19 cases

PORTLAND, Ore. — COVID-19 has claimed one more life in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll to 19, the Oregon Health Authority reported at 8 a.m. today.

Oregon Health Authority also reported 47 new cases of COVID-19 as of 8 a.m. today. The new COVID-19 cases reported today are in the following counties: Benton (1), Clackamas (6), Deschutes (3), Douglas (1), Jackson (1), Lane (2), Lincoln (1), Marion (10), Multnomah (18), Washington (3), and Yamhill (1). One case previously reported in Hood River County was identified as a resident of another state; thus, today’s statewide case count is 736. Oregon Health Authority reports new cases once a day on its website: www.healthoregon.org/coronavirus.

Oregon’s nineteenth COVID-19 death is a 70-year-old woman in Multnomah County, who tested positive on March 27, 2020, and died on March 29, 2020 at her residence. She had underlying medical conditions.

Update: The COVID-19 case data OHA publishes once a day on its website and shares once a day with the media are provisional and subject to change. A case reported yesterday as a Hood River County case was later determined to be a Washington State case. The total number of new cases reported as of yesterday has changed from 690 to 689.

Latest COVID-19 projections show social distancing can cut coronavirus infections if Oregonians keep current measures in place into May

Updated projections from health researchers show that there is “strong evidence that measures currently in place in Oregon are reducing transmission,” according to the latest models.  The most recent data suggest that current social distancing measures could cut transmission rates between 50%-70% if Oregonians maintain these limitations on virus-spreading interactions into early May.

If Oregonians can maintain current social distancing efforts and the current projections hold true, the state could meet the likely demand for hospital beds under current strategies. 

According to the latest report, researchers estimate that Oregon has slightly higher numbers of current infections than previously assessed, based on an increase in reported cases from earlier time points.

  • COVID-19 infections: Under current social distancing conditions with the cooperation of most Oregonians to Stay Home, Save Lives, it is estimated that in early May Oregon would have over 4,000 cumulative infections and 200-1,200 active infections. However, if the state were to reopen non-essential businesses (while keeping schools closed), the number of new infections would spike to as many as 3,500 active infections by early May
  • Hospital beds needed: Researchers found “expected demand for hospital beds is predicted to remain relatively constant before decreasing, assuming current or strengthened interventions and continued high compliance
  • Uncertainty: Researchers highlighted that the projections remain uncertain. In coming weeks, state public health officials and researchers will get a better picture of current actual infections and how they affect the projections, as well as more data on the public’s continued adherence to social distancing measures.

The models state health officials released today were prepared by the Institute for Disease Modeling, based in Washington.

Oregon’s emergency response continues to focus on strengthening the health care system’s ability to meet the coming surge. State health officials are working with hospitals and other health care partners to mobilize the health care workforce and keep workers safe, expand bed capacity and secure more ventilators. However, the public’s ability to maintain social distancing will be the most important factor in determining whether Oregon prevents local hospitals from becoming overwhelmed by COVID-19 admissions.

Dr. Dean Sidelinger, state health officer at OHA, said: “We know coronavirus has brought painful disruption and distress for Oregonians. However, these numbers tell us that what we’re doing can work. We know social distancing is tough and comes with incredible sacrifices. But steps we’re all taking to maintain social distancing could save the lives of people we know and people who are important to us. As Oregonians, we all must continue to put Stay Home, Save Lives into practice.”


Stay informed about COVID-19:

Oregon response: The Oregon Health Authority and Oregon Office of Emergency Management lead the state response.

United States response: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention leads the U.S. response.

Global response: The World Health Organization guides the global response.


Oregon reports 2 new COVID-19 deaths, 84 new COVID-19 cases; OHA gains flexibility in its Medicaid program to better serve low-income Oregonians during COVID-19 pandemic
Oregon Health Authority - 03/31/20 1:46 PM

March 31, 2020

Oregon COVID-19 Joint Information Center (JIC) staff, 503-373-7872, media.COVID-19@state.or.us

Oregon reports 2 new COVID-19 deaths, 84 new COVID-19 cases; OHA gains flexibility in its Medicaid program to better serve low-income Oregonians during COVID-19 pandemic

PORTLAND, Ore.— COVID-19 has claimed 2 more lives in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll from 16 to 18, the Oregon Health Authority reported at 8 a.m. today.

Oregon Health Authority also reported 84 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the state total to 690, as of 8 a.m. today. The COVID-19 cases reported today are in the following counties: Benton (3), Clackamas (10), Douglas (1), Hood River (1), Jackson (1), Klamath (1), Lane (4), Lincoln (1), Linn (1), Malheur (1), Marion (18), Multnomah (16), Polk (3), Umatilla (1), Wallowa (1), Wasco (2), Washington (18), and Yamhill (2). Oregon Health Authority reports new cases once a day on its website: www.healthoregon.org/coronavirus.

Oregon’s seventeenth COVID-19 death is a 90-year-old man in Yamhill County, who tested positive on March 25, 2020, and died on March 29, 2020 at Providence Newberg Medical Center. He had underlying medical conditions.

Oregon’s eighteenth COVID-19 death is an 88-year-old woman in Benton County, who tested positive on March 26, 2020, and died March 30, 2020 at Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center in Corvallis. She had underlying medical conditions.

Update: The COVID-19 case data OHA publishes once a day on its website and shares once a day with the media are provisional and subject to change. A case reported yesterday as a Deschutes County case has been updated today to Washington County.

Oregon Health Authority gains flexibility in its Medicaid program to better serve low-income Oregonians during COVID-19 pandemic

The Oregon Health Authority has received flexibility from the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to remove barriers for Oregonians to qualify for, enroll in, and stay enrolled in the Oregon Health Plan (OHP). Oregon has also received flexibility for providers to provide care to members as the state responds to the COVID-19 pandemic. Nearly one in four Oregonians currently receives health coverage through OHP.

“The COVID-19 pandemic requires us to act quickly to support the needs of our communities,” said Patrick Allen, director of the Oregon Health Authority. “This added flexibility in our Medicaid program is going to allow us to more quickly get people access to health care and expand our health system to meet the challenges of this public health emergency.”

The key areas of flexibility that Oregon will gain from this waiver include:

  • All members who are currently enrolled in the Oregon Health Plan will not lose coverage during this crisis. This includes coverage that is only state-funded (i.e. Cover all Kids).
  • Individuals can sign up for OHP without having to verify their income (submit a pay stub) with their application. They will be able to self-attest, which will help Oregonians get access to OHP coverage more quickly.
  • Federal stimulus payments and increased unemployment payments will not affect OHP eligibility. They will not be counted during the application process or when members report a change in their household.
  • Oregon will have additional flexibility to add to its healthcare workforce, provide treatment in temporary sites, and for paying providers during this public health emergency.

Additional information and guidance related to COVID-19 for coordinated care organizations (CCOs) and providers serving OHP members is available on the OHA website. A fact sheet for OHP members about their coverage and COVID-19 can be downloaded on the OHP website in English and in Spanish.


Stay informed about COVID-19:

Oregon response: The Oregon Health Authority leads the state response.

United States response: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention leads the U.S. response.

Global response: The World Health Organization guides the global response.


Oregon reports 3 new COVID-19 deaths, 58 new COVID-19 cases
Oregon Health Authority - 03/30/20 11:55 AM

March 30, 2020

Oregon reports 3 new COVID-19 deaths, 58 new COVID-19 cases

PORTLAND, Ore. — COVID-19 has claimed three more lives in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll to 16, the Oregon Health Authority reported at 8 a.m. today.

Oregon Health Authority reported 58 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the state total to 606, as of 8 a.m. today. The new COVID-19 cases reported today are in the following counties: Benton (1), Clackamas (1), Deschutes (2), Douglas (4), Jackson (1), Josephine (4), Lane (2), Marion (14), Multnomah (9), Polk (2), Tillamook (1), Wasco (2), Washington (14), Yamhill (1).

Oregon Health Authority reports new cases once a day on its website: www.healthoregon.org/coronavirus.

Oregon’s 14th COVID-19 death is a 91-year-old male in Yamhill County, who tested positive on March 20, and died March 29 at Providence Newberg Medical Center. He had underlying medical conditions.

Oregon’s 15th COVID-19 death is an 80-year-old male in Clackamas County, who tested positive on March 22, and died March 29 at Legacy Meridian Park Medical Center. He had underlying medical conditions.

Oregon’s 16th COVID-19 death is a 91-year-old male in Linn County, who tested positive on March 15, and died March 29 at the Oregon Veterans’ Home in Lebanon. He had underlying medical conditions.

Stay informed about COVID-19:

Oregon response: The Oregon Health Authority and Oregon Office of Emergency Management lead the state response.

United States response: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention leads the U.S. response.

Global response: The World Health Organization guides the global response.

 


OHA News Release: Oregon reports 69 new COVID-19 cases
Oregon Health Authority - 03/29/20 10:57 AM

PORTLAND, Ore.— Oregon Health Authority reported 69 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the state total to 548, as of 8 a.m. today. No new deaths were reported. The number of COVID-19 deaths in Oregon remains at 13, as of 8 a.m. today.

 The new COVID-19 cases reported today are in the following counties: Clackamas (3), Deschutes (3), Hood River (1), Jackson (11), Josephine (1), Klamath (2), Lane (1), Linn (4), Marion (15), Multnomah (10), Polk (2), Tillamook (1), Wasco (1), Washington (14). Oregon Health Authority reports new cases once a day on its website: www.healthoregon.org/coronavirus.

 Update: The 93-year-old man whose death was reported yesterday had an underlying condition. The data posted once a day on Oregon Health Authority’s website and shared once a day with the media are provisional and may be updated as more information becomes available after the daily reporting.


State agencies ask Oregonians to voluntarily refrain from outdoor burning while communities respond to COVID-19
Oregon Office of Emergency Management - 04/03/20 6:18 PM

(SALEM, Ore.) — In response to the "Stay Home, Save Lives" Executive Order to reduce the effects of the COVID-19 virus, a coalition of Oregon state agencies are asking Oregonians to voluntarily refrain from conducting outdoor burning. 

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF), Oregon State Fire Marshal’s Office (OSFM), Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA), and Oregon Health Authority (OHA) recognize that many Oregonians use fire as a necessary tool to manage their lands, including industrial forest landowners, farmers, small woodland owners, and rural residents. However, it’s important to weigh possible effects on the wider community before choosing to burn. Please be a good neighbor. Smoke from fires during the current pandemic may result in the following negative consequences for the public and first responders:

  • Smoke inhalation can cause upper respiratory symptoms, which could be incorrectly attributed to COVID-19, leading to unnecessary testing or self-isolation.
  • Exposure to smoke and other forms of air pollution can increase the risk of contracting infectious respiratory disease such as COVID-19, increase the severity of existing respiratory infections, and worsen underlying chronic respiratory conditions.
  • There is a severe shortage of personal protective equipment to reduce smoke exposure at this time.
  • First responders and other emergency services are operating at a reduced capacity and have limited resources to respond to out-of-control burns.

COVID-19 affects the respiratory system. Fever, cough and difficulty breathing are the most common symptoms. While some people with COVID-19 are hospitalized, most patients recover at home, where smoke from a nearby outdoor burn could worsen their condition. To avoid additional health impacts, all people in Oregon are asked to voluntarily refrain from conducting outdoor burning activities until further notice.

Burning that can be delayed includes:

  • Debris burning around one’s property
  • Burn barrels
  • Industrial burning
  • Slash and forest burning
  • Agricultural burning that would impact neighbors and can be delayed

Local officials may already have prohibited outdoor burning in your area. If you must conduct outdoor burning, please first check with your local fire agency to see if outdoor burning is still allowed. If it is, please follow best burn practices, which can be found on the website of the Office of the State Fire Marshall.

DEQ, ODF, OSFM, and ODA encourage the public to use the following alternatives to burning when available:

  • Recycle paper products when possible
  • Compost or chip yard debris on site
  • Haul to a yard debris composting or recycling site
  • Reuse old lumber

For more information, visit:

ODF - https://www.oregon.gov/odf/Fire/pages/Burn.aspx

DEQ - https://www.oregon.gov/deq/aq/Pages/Burning.aspx

ODA - https://www.oregon.gov/ODA/programs/NaturalResources/Pages/Burning.aspx

OHA COVID-19 website - https://govstatus.egov.com/OR-OHA-COVID-19

This is a rapidly evolving situation. The latest COVID-19 response and protocols information is available at the Oregon Health Authority | COVID 19 Updates webpage. Additional information can be found on the CDC website.

# # #




Attached Media Files: 2020-04/3986/133119/multi_agency_release_04032020.pdf

Stay Home, Save Lives is working in Oregon
Oregon Office of Emergency Management - 04/02/20 4:40 PM

SALEM, Ore. — New projections from health researchers show there is “strong evidence that measures currently in place in Oregon are reducing transmission,” but these measures need to be maintained to reduce the number of COVID-19 infections in Oregon.

During a virtual press briefing this afternoon, Oregon Office of Emergency Management director Andrew Phelps, along with Dr. Dean Sidelinger of Oregon Health Authority, discussed projections of the disease’s spread in the state. Go to https://oregon-coronavirus-geo.hub.arcgis.com/ to view video from the briefing. Dr. Sidelinger is a specialist in epidemiology and immunization.

“By staying home, Oregonians are doing their part to flatten the curve,” said Andrew Phelps. “When Oregonians stay home, we limit contact with sick people, protect first responders and frontline workers, preserving hospital space, and extend the life of the state’s supply of personal protection equipment, such as masks and gloves.”

 

Phelps clarified that the briefings will be occurring regularly and that media advisories will be sent out on the days there are webinars. The Oregon Joint Information Center (JIC) may be reached at media.COVID-19@state.or.us or 503-373-7872 with any immediate questions.

 

Oregon Health Authority reports new cases once a day on its website: www.healthoregon.org/coronavirus.

 

Stay informed about COVID-19:

Oregon response: The Oregon Health Authority and Oregon Office of Emergency Management lead the state response.

United States response: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention leads the U.S. response.

Global response: The World Health Organization guides the global response.

 




Attached Media Files: 2020-04/3986/133056/Press_Release_Director_Phelps_4-2-20.pdf

Andrew Phelps does a deep dive into flatten the curve & case projections with state public health officer and epidemiologist Dr. Dean Sidelinger
Oregon Office of Emergency Management - 04/02/20 11:18 AM

MEDIA ADVISORY: Andrew Phelps does a deep dive into flatten the curve & case projections with state public health officer and epidemiologist Dr. Dean Sidelinger

WHAT

Andrew Phelps, director of the Oregon Office of Emergency Management (OEM) and Dean Sidelinger, M.D., state health officer of the Oregon Health Authority, will hold a press conference today about the status of the State’s response to COVID-19 and the state’s efforts to flatten the curve.

WHO

Director Phelps is directing Oregon’s response to COVID-19 from the Emergency Coordination Center in Salem. Within the ECC there are 18 emergency support functions from Oregon’s 33 state agencies that provide necessary resources during emergencies.

Dr. Sidelinger is the state’s health officer and epidemiologist with the OHA Public Health Division.

WHEN

Thursday (Today), April 2, 2020

1:50 p.m.

WHERE/how

Please register for the Press Conference webinar here:

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/8228163786602102285

Note: Please email any prepared questions you may have to Media.COVID-19@state.or.us.

WHY

To report the status of state agencies’ efforts and the management of Oregon’s COVID-19 response.

LEARN MORE

Updated information on the State’s response to COVID-19 is available at https://govstatus.egov.com/or-covid-19.




Attached Media Files: 2020-04/3986/133037/2020-04-02-Media-Advisory-Phelps-Sidelinger.pdf

Oregon COVID Response Team to Ensure Delivery of PPE to all 36 Counties
Oregon Office of Emergency Management - 03/31/20 5:12 PM

SALEM, Ore. — The State of Oregon expects a shipment of personal protective equipment (PPE) today from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Once received, the personnel at the fully operational PPE Distribution Center in Wilsonville will begin processing and shipping those supplies to all 36 counties and 9 tribes in Oregon.

“Having an adequate supply of PPE—masks, gowns, and gloves––is essential for the safety of first responders and health care workers,” said Andrew Phelps, director of the Oregon Office of Emergency Management (OEM). “We’re currently in a global shortage, but Oregon is working to replenish our supplies of PPE through public and private partnerships, distribute those supplies to all 36 counties in Oregon, and ensure health care workers and first responders are protected.”

As of midday today, the state of Oregon has distributed:

  • Over 1 million gloves
  • 10,000 face shields
  • Over 400,000 N95 masks
  • Over 50,000 surgical masks

OEM’s Emergency Coordination Center, which is managing Oregon’s response, plans to ship PPE to each county and Oregon’s 9 tribes, for allocation. Counties are expected to receive shipments by or before April 6.

“Even with the arrival of PPE and critical care supplies for our front line workers, all Oregonians need to continue working together and take preventative action to flatten the curve to reduce the spread of COVID-19,” Phelps added. “By staying in your home, you are helping to flatten the curve. Ultimately, slowing the spread of COVID-19 directly helps to slow the demand for PPE.”

Updated information on the State’s response to COVID-19 is available at https://govstatus.egov.com/or-covid-19.

Phelps’ regular briefings can be viewed https://oregon-coronavirus-geo.hub.arcgis.com/.

For additional information on COVID-19, visit:

  • Oregon response: The Oregon Health Authority and Oregon Office of Emergency Management lead the state response.
  • United States response: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention leads the U.S. response.
  • Global response: The World Health Organization guides the global response



Attached Media Files: 2020-03/3986/132982/Press_Release_Director_Phelps_3-31-20.pdf

Director Andrew Phelps will give an update on Oregon's supply, procurement, and distribution of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
Oregon Office of Emergency Management - 03/31/20 10:27 AM

March 31, 2020

 

MEDIA ADVISORY

 

WHAT

Andrew Phelps, director of the Oregon Office of Emergency Management (OEM), will give an update on Oregon’s supply, procurement, and distribution of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in his daily update.

WHO

Director Phelps is coordinating the State’s response to COVID-19 from the Emergency Coordination Center in Salem. Under OEM there are 18 emergency support functions from Oregon’s 33 state agencies that provide necessary resources during emergencies.

WHEN

Today, March 31, 2020

1:50 p.m.

WHERE/HOW

Please register for the Daily Press Conference webinar here:

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/rt/2935623884303595278

 

Note: Due to ongoing connectivity issues, we recommend emailing any prepared questions you may have to Media.COVID-19@state.or.us.

WHY

To report the status of state agencies’ efforts and the management of Oregon’s COVID-19 response.

LEARN MORE

Updated information on the State’s response to COVID-19 will be available at https://govstatus.egov.com/or-covid-19.

CONTACT

Joint Information Center

503-373-7278

Media.COVID-19@state.or.us

 




Attached Media Files: Media Advisory

Director Andrew Phelps Announces Regular Press Update Schedule, Stresses Importance of Efforts to Distribute PPE
Oregon Office of Emergency Management - 03/30/20 4:07 PM

March 30, 2020

SALEM, Ore.— Today, Andrew Phelps, Director of the Oregon Office of Emergency Management (OEM), gave his first status update from the Joint Information Center about the state’s response to COVID-19. Following the directive of Governor Kate Brown, OEM has activated Oregon’s Unified Command structure, the state’s incident command emergency response organizational structure, similar to the response structure that would be activated during a major Cascadia earthquake. Director Phelps will hold regular press conferences to update the media and the public.

While all emergencies begin and end at the local level, the spread of COVID-19 has outpaced the personnel, capacity, and resources of local communities in Oregon.

“In these unusual and dire circumstances,” said Director Phelps, “The ECC is charged with coordinating collective efforts at a statewide level to stem the outbreak of COVID-19 throughout Oregon, working as one team, with one voice, to serve every single Oregonian.”

Director Phelps is coordinating the state’s response to COVID-19 from the Emergency Coordination Center (ECC) in Salem, in partnership with the Oregon Health Authority in that agency’s efforts to coordinate the public health response to COVID-19. Under OEM there are 18 emergency support functions. These functions describe how Oregon’s 33 state agencies will provide and coordinate necessary resources during an emergency.

A key example of how this larger structure works is the assembly and dissemination of personal protective equipment, or PPE. PPE includes items like gowns, masks and gloves that healthcare workers use frequently to protect themselves and their patients. The ECC’s PPE distribution center in Wilsonville is now fully operational. From this location, ECC staff will proactively send PPE out to county emergency managers, tribes and the state.

“COVID-19 affects everyone in Oregon – all 36 counties, all nine tribes,” said Director Phelps. “As we continue to fight the spread of this virus, I want to thank everyone for what they are doing to help flatten the curve, especially our first responders and front line workers. And I’d like to remind Oregonians that the best way they can help is to stay home to save lives.”

Updated information on the State’s response to COVID-19 will be available at https://govstatus.egov.com/or-covid-19. Director Phelps’ daily briefings can be viewed https://oregon-coronavirus-geo.hub.arcgis.com/. (When it has been uploaded)

Stay informed about COVID-19:

Oregon response: The Oregon Health Authority and Oregon Office of Emergency Management lead the state response.

United States response: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention leads the U.S. response.

Global response: The World Health Organization guides the global response.

 




Attached Media Files: Press Release

Oregon Office of Emergency daily virtual press conference - 3/30/2020 at 1:50 PM
Oregon Office of Emergency Management - 03/30/20 10:37 AM

MEDIA ADVISORY

 

WHAT

Andrew Phelps, director of the Oregon Office of Emergency Management (OEM), will give his first of what will be regular press conferences about the status of the State’s response to COVID-19, including a status update on personal protective equipment statewide.

WHO

Director Phelps is coordinating the State’s response to COVID-19 from the Emergency Coordination Center in Salem. Under OEM there are 18 emergency support functions from Oregon’s 33 state agencies that provide necessary resources during emergencies.

WHEN

Today, March 30, 2020

1:50 p.m.

WHERE/how

Please register for the Daily Press Conference webinar here:

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/rt/2935623884303595278

 

Note: Due to ongoing connectivity issues, we recommend emailing any prepared questions you may have to Media.COVID-19@state.or.us.

WHY

To report the status of state agencies’ efforts and the management of Oregon’s COVID-19 response.

learn more

Updated information on the State’s response to COVID-19 will be available at https://govstatus.egov.com/or-covid-19.

CONTACT

Joint Information Center

503-373-7278

Media.COVID-19@state.or.us




Attached Media Files: Media Advisory

Oregon Department of Energy (ODOE) Provides Clarification on Temporary Suspension of Oregon's Ban on Self-Service Gas Stations
Oregon Office of Emergency Management - 03/29/20 6:04 PM

Oregon’s COVID-19 Statewide Joint Information Center and the Oregon Department of Energy (ODOE) are 
providing additional clarification related to yesterday’s announcement from the Office of the State 
Fire Marshal, which temporarily suspended Oregon’s ban on self-service gas stations.

This temporary suspension does not make self-service mandatory. The intention is to ensure fuel is 
available to essential personnel who need to travel. The Oregon Fuels Association (OFA) states, 
“This change allows gas station attendants to help these customers while avoiding face-to-face, 
hand-to- hand contact and apply social distancing practices. Attendants will sanitize equipment and 
fuel nozzles and assist customers with refueling as needed.”

ODOE is responsible for maintaining a reliable source of fuel for Oregonians. The gas station 
workforce has recently reduced by as much as 50 percent due to illness, childcare issues and safety 
concerns according to the fuel industry. Self-service allows some gas stations to continue 
operations with fewer staff and ensures Oregonians can refuel their vehicles.

OFA adds, “Unattended self-service will only happen if and when a gas station owner exhausts all 
staffing options.” Those stations that do not have an attendant on hand are required to post safety 
signs for social distancing as well as instructions for how to operate a fuel pump.

This temporary suspension is currently in effect through April 11, 2020, and may be extended by the 
Oregon State Fire Marshal. Amidst the COVID-19, the goal of this change is to make refueling safer 
for both customers and service station attendants, while keeping stations open.

This does not affect existing areas of the state already authorized for self-service refueling 
under Oregon law.


For more information, contact the Joint Information Center.


Oregon COVID-19 Joint Information Center (JIC) Staff, 503-373-7872, media.COVID-19@state.or.us
 




Attached Media Files: News Release

Recreational Trails Program now accepting grant applications for motorized and non-motorized tail projects
Oregon Parks and Recreation Dept. - 04/01/20 7:00 AM

The Recreational Trails Program is now accepting grant applications for the 2020 grant cycle. The federally funded reimbursement grant program provides matching grants to construct, expand, or improve public trails for motorized and non-motorized use.

Grant funds are available for construction, heavy restoration, trailhead facilities, land or easement acquisitions, safety and education, trail assessment for accessibility or maintenance, and water trails.

Eligible applicants: local governments, park districts, state and federal agencies, Tribal governments, other public land managers, and nonprofits. Nonprofits must demonstrate partnership with a land manager and be registered as a nonprofit in Oregon for at least three years prior to the application date.

Eligible applicants should apply online via the Oregon Parks and Recreation grant application website: oprdgrants.org. Returning applicants should use their existing account to log in and complete the application. New applicants will need to request an account via the grants website.

Interested applicants must submit a letter of intent via the online system by April 30. The deadline for completed applications is June 15.

Contact the RTP grant coordinator (see contact info below) if circumstances related to COVID-19 might impact your ability to meet these deadlines.

An elective webinar will be held April 8 to provide information on the program and how to navigate the application process. Register here: register.gotowebinar.com/register/8839060142165623052

The Recreational Trails Program is funded through the Federal Highway Administration and administered by the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD). Approximately $1.5 million in matching grants is available for 2020. Since 1993, the program has funded over 500 projects across Oregon.

More information about the program, including the grant manual, application instructions and program schedule, is on the OPRD website: oregon.gov/oprd/GRA/Pages/GRA-rtp.aspx.

Questions can be directed to Jodi Bellefeuille, Recreational Trails Program coordinator, at ellefeuille@oregon.gov">jodi.bellefeuille@oregon.gov or 503-986-0716.


Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission meets via conference call April 15
Oregon Parks and Recreation Dept. - 03/30/20 7:00 AM

The Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission will convene via conference call for their second meeting of the year April 15. The call was arranged to protect the health of commissioners and the public, and to comply with Gov. Brown’s March 23 executive order regarding COVID-19.

Commissioners will meet that morning 8:30 - 9:30 a.m. for an executive session to discuss acquisition priorities and opportunities, and potential litigation. Executive sessions are closed to the public.

A business meeting will begin at 9:30 a.m. Members of the public will be able to listen to the call; instructions about listening to the meeting will be available online prior to the meeting: bit.ly/OPRDcommissionAPRIL2020.

Notable requests on the business meeting agenda:

Approve the final report from the Governor’s Task Force on the Outdoors
Gov. Brown established the task force in early 2019 with a one-year directive to explore long-term strategies for elevating outdoor recreation in Oregon. The task force has completed their final report and will share it with the commission, governor, state legislature and the public. 

Approve several legislative concepts for the 2021 legislative session
Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) has identified several concepts for possible introduction as agency bills during the 2021 legislative session. They relate to drones, all-terrain vehicle safety, historic cemeteries and other historic properties, and other topics. Details are online at bit.ly/OPRDcommissionAPRIL2020.

Approve a property acquisition adjacent to Wallowa Lake State Park to improve emergency access
Access to Wallowa Lake State Park, near Joseph, is limited to the park’s one entrance/exit road that spans the Wallowa River. Should that small bridge be blocked during an emergency, first responders would be unable to enter or exit the park. 

OPRD is proposing to expand park access by purchasing 28.3 acres of land adjacent to the park from a private landowner. If acquired, the land would connect the park to another road access point, and improve the recreational value of the park. A recent appraisal valued the land at $665,000.

Approve grant funding recommendations from the ATV Grant Subcommittee
The ATV Grant Program provides funding statewide for Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) recreation. For 2020, the committee is recommending funding for 18 grant applicants, totaling $1.2 million.

The full draft agenda and meeting packet are online at bit.ly/OPRDcommissionAPRIL2020.

The Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission promotes outdoor recreation and heritage by establishing policies, adopting rules, and setting the budget for the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. The seven members are appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Oregon Senate. They serve four-year terms and meet several times a year at locations across the state.


Commission hosting webinar to hear from PacifiCorp customers about rate change request
Oregon Public Utility Commission - 03/31/20 1:51 PM

SALEM, Ore. – The Oregon Public Utility Commission (PUC) is hosting a public comment hearing via webinar, due to the current COVID-19 outbreak, to provide an opportunity for the Commission to hear directly from PacifiCorp customers regarding the proposed increase to electricity rates.  

PacifiCorp’s general rate change request, its first since 2013 and filed prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, is undergoing a nearly year-long review and will be fully investigated by the PUC, the Oregon Citizen’s Utility Board, the Alliance of Western Energy Consumers, and other intervening parties. This public comment hearing is part of that investigation, which will conclude by the end of this year when the Commissioners will rule on the request. 

PacifiCorp is asking for an overall rate increase of 5.4 percent or $70.8 million annually. Under the proposed filing, an average residential customer who uses 900 kilo-watt hours per month would see their bill increase by just under $7 monthly.

The public comment hearing webinar will be held on Thursday, April 2 from 6-8 p.m. To participate in the free webinar, please register in advance at: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/2389843904203354636. Once registered, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

PacifiCorp customers and other interested persons may participate in the public comment hearing to provide verbal comments to the Commissioners and the Administrative Law Judge presiding over this rate case. There will not be formal presentations, as the purpose of this webinar is to hear directly from customers.

The Commission will also host a public comment hearing via teleconference on April 13, 2020.  For those unable to participate in the webinar or teleconference, comments can be submitted by email to ings@state.or.us,">puc.hearings@state.or.us, by calling 503-378-6600 or 800-522-2404 (TTY or dial 711), or by mail to:

Oregon Public Utility Commission
Attn: Administrative Hearings Division – UE 374
PO Box 1088
Salem, OR 97308-1088

The PUC’s mission is to ensure that customers of Oregon’s investor owned utilities have access to safe, reliable, and high quality utility services at just and reasonable rates.  The PUC’s ultimate decision will consider the economic impacts resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, and seek to protect both the long-term and short-term interests of customers.   

# # #


Counties/Regional
Central Oregon Leaders Launch Month-long COVID-19 Awareness Campaign (Photo)
Central Oregon Emergency Information Network - 04/03/20 4:14 PM
2020-04/6117/133115/Twitter-StayHomeSaveLives.jpg
2020-04/6117/133115/Twitter-StayHomeSaveLives.jpg
http://www.flashalertnewswire.net/images/news/2020-04/6117/133115/thumb_Twitter-StayHomeSaveLives.jpg

Central Oregonians play a key role in the campaign to help slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus and can help keep our friends and neighbors safe, and keep our health system strong.

Today, dozens of local leaders from Crook, Deschutes and Jefferson counties are teaming up with television and radio stations to raise awareness about how local residents can protect themselves and those around them through a series of COVID-19 awareness messages being released throughout April.

“Many people are worried about the way COVID-19 is affecting our communities”, said Michael Ryan, Crook County Sheriff’s Office Emergency Manager. “The disruptions to daily life are challenging for all of us, yet important to slowing the spread of COVID-19 – that is why we are lending our voices to this important campaign.”

Watch and listen for mayors, commissioners, leaders from ODOT, schools, police, fire and more as they lend their voices to this critical effort on social and traditional media channels. Thousands of messages will be shared this month alone throughout Crook, Deschutes and Jefferson counties, thanks to media partners at Bend Radio Group, Combined Communications, Horizon Broadcasting, NPG of Oregon and Zolo Media Group.

“We know we are asking a lot of Oregonians in order to protect our communities,” Ryan added. “We continue to need your help to reduce the spread of this vicious virus and keep Central Oregonians, Oregonians and our entire country healthy.”

According to the World Health Organization today (10AM Central European time), the U.S. has surpassed France and now ranks third in the world for COVID-19 death counts  (4,793 deaths), behind Italy (13,917) and Spain (10,003). The U.S. continues to be home to more known cases of COVID-19 than any other country on earth.

The Central Oregon Emergency Information Network reminds residents that together, we can bend the curve. Stay home, save lives.

Watch PSA:  Emily Kirk, City of Bend and Central Oregon Emergency Information Network

ABOUT COEIN
COEIN’s website, www.coemergencyinfo.blogspot.com provides a collective resource for up-to-date information. Access to accurate, timely information both locally and nationally is encouraged. Our County Public Health experts point to the Oregon Health Authority and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as good sources of information. Daily situation updates are available via email at http://bit.ly/COVID19UPDATES COVID-19 phone line: Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. 541-699-5109

Central Oregon Emergency Information Network (COEIN), includes Deschutes County Health Services, Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office, St. Charles Health System, Crook County Health Department, Crook County Sheriff’s Office, Jefferson County Health Department, Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department, tri-county public schools, City of Bend, Bend Police, Bend Fire & Rescue, and others. COEIN’s purpose is to collect, coordinate and distribute timely and accurate information.

Accommodation Information for People with Disabilities  
To obtain this information in an alternate format such as Braille, large print, electronic formats, etc. please contact the COEIN JIC at 541.316.0087 or centraloregoninfo@gmail.com.

 




Attached Media Files: 2020-04/6117/133115/Twitter-StayHomeSaveLives.jpg , oday, dozens of local leaders from Crook, Deschutes and Jefferson counties are teaming up with television and radio stations to raise awareness about how local residents can protect themselves and those around them through a series of COVID-19 awareness m

Deschutes County Fire Chiefs Announce Temporary Burning Closure Starting April 10 (Photo)
Central Oregon Emergency Information Network - 04/03/20 3:54 PM
2020-04/6117/133112/Update_web.jpg
2020-04/6117/133112/Update_web.jpg
http://www.flashalertnewswire.net/images/news/2020-04/6117/133112/thumb_Update_web.jpg

Deschutes County Fire Chiefs are temporarily closing outdoor burning as a result of the COVID-19 virus. Outdoor burning will close at sunset on Friday, April 10, 2020.

Crook and Jefferson County burning regulations remain unchanged, residents can check with their local jurisdictions.

Outdoor burning restrictions may be lifted if impacts of the COVID-19 virus subside before fire season begins.

The decision to temporarily close outdoor burning was not easy for local fire officials. The health benefits for vulnerable populations were considered along with the need to encourage people to reduce combustible vegetation around their homes. At the end of the day, the health and safety of Deschutes County residents was determined to be the most important consideration at this time. Fire Chiefs consulted with officials at the Deschutes County Emergency Operations Center as well as regional wildfire protection agencies, including the Oregon Department of Forestry, before making the final decision.

Deschutes County Fire Defense Board Chief Mike Supkis said, “We are preparing for a potential increase in emergency response activity in the coming weeks. We want to ensure we have enough firefighter paramedics available to care for residents who become sick.”

Most Deschutes County fire departments also provide ambulance transport services. If firefighter paramedics are responding to burning complaints or escaped controlled burns, responses to medical emergencies could be slowed.

Chief Supkis encourages Deschutes County residents to contact their local fire department if they have any questions about the closure.
 

ABOUT COEIN
COEIN’s website, www.coemergencyinfo.blogspot.com provides a collective resource for up-to-date information. Access to accurate, timely information both locally and nationally is encouraged. Our County Public Health experts point to the Oregon Health Authority and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as good sources of information. Daily situation updates are available via email at http://bit.ly/COVID19UPDATES COVID-19 phone line: Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. 541-699-5109

Central Oregon Emergency Information Network (COEIN), includes Deschutes County Health Services, Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office, St. Charles Health System, Crook County Health Department, Crook County Sheriff’s Office, Jefferson County Health Department, Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department, tri-county public schools, City of Bend, Bend Police, Bend Fire & Rescue, and others. COEIN’s purpose is to collect, coordinate and distribute timely and accurate information.

Accommodation Information for People with Disabilities  
To obtain this information in an alternate format such as Braille, large print, electronic formats, etc. please contact the COEIN JIC at 541.316.0087 or centraloregoninfo@gmail.com.


 




Attached Media Files: 2020-04/6117/133112/Update_web.jpg

Handwashing Locations; 10K Homemade Masks; Voluntary Quarantine for Airport Travelers; Daily Digest for April 2, 2020 (Photo)
Central Oregon Emergency Information Network - 04/02/20 2:31 PM
St. Charles 10K Mask Challenge
St. Charles 10K Mask Challenge
http://www.flashalertnewswire.net/images/news/2020-04/6117/133047/thumb_10K_mask_challenge.jpg

REDMOND OFFICIALS ENCOURAGE TRAVELERS TO SELF-QUARANTINE
City of Redmond owned Redmond Municipal Airport will immediately begin encouraging all airport passengers to do a 14-day in-home self-quarantine upon arrival in Central Oregon. This recommendation will apply to all passengers, regardless of originating airport. The airport reports there has been a 90 percent reduction in passengers through the airport. 

Learn more about this message at the City of Redmond webpage.

BEND HANDWASHING LOCATIONS ANNOUNCED
New handwashing stations have been installed at the following locations throughout the Bend area:

  • Downtown Bend Library - 601 N.W. Wall St.

  • Hawthorne Station - 334 NE Hawthorne Ave.

  • Juniper Ridge - East end of Cooley Road, east of 18th St.

  • Safeway East - 2650 NE Hwy 20

  • Safeway Midtown - 642 NE 3rd St.

  • Safeway West - 320 W SW Century Dr.

  • Albertsons South - 61155 S Hwy. 97, Bend

  • Albertsons North - 1800 NE 3rd St.

  • Bend Church - 680 NW Bond St., Bend 

These handwashing stations are donated by Cascade Disposal/Advanced Systems through April and provide safe places for people experiencing homeless, delivery drivers, mail carriers, first responders and others to wash their hands throughout the day.

ST. CHARLES LAUNCHES 10K MASK CAMPAIGN
St. Charles is calling on local residents to help sew and donate 10,000 masks to the health system in order to provide every caregiver with two masks each, which they could launder and wear. The homemade masks—which are intended to help prevent asymptomatic spread of COVID-19 in public spaces—will be worn by caregivers who may come into contact with individuals who are not suspected of having an infectious disease. The hand-sewn masks are not approved personal protection equipment, or PPE, which must be worn by caregivers who are in contact with a person who is known or suspected to have COVID-19 or any other infectious disease.

Individuals who sew masks can drop them off at one of several donation sites throughout Central Oregon. Do not drop off masks at hospitals or St. Charles clinics.

Find instructions and details about drop-off locations online.

DESCHUTES COUNTY PROHIBITS SHORT-TERM RENTAL STAYS
The Deschutes County Board of Commissioners are prohibiting short term rental stays in rural, unincorporated areas of Deschutes County through May 15 to reduce exposure and spread of COVID-19. The order does not apply to rentals in Bend, La Pine, Redmond or Sisters. Learn more about this order on the Deschutes County webpage.

ABOUT COEIN
COEIN’s website, www.coemergencyinfo.blogspot.com provides a collective resource for up-to-date information. Access to accurate, timely information both locally and nationally is encouraged. Our County Public Health experts point to the Oregon Health Authority and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as good sources of information.

Daily situation updates are available via email at http://bit.ly/COVID19UPDATES

Central Oregon Emergency Information Network (COEIN), includes Deschutes County Health Services, Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office, St. Charles Health System, Crook County Health Department, Crook County Sheriff’s Office, Jefferson County Health Department, Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department, tri-county public schools, City of Bend, Bend Police, Bend Fire & Rescue, and others. COEIN’s purpose is to collect, coordinate and distribute timely and accurate information.

Accommodation Information for People with Disabilities  
To obtain this information in an alternate format such as Braille, large print, electronic formats, etc. please contact the COEIN JIC at 541.316.0087 or centraloregoninfo@gmail.com.


 




Attached Media Files: St. Charles 10K Mask Challenge

New handwashing stations; Oregon Health Plan Expansion (Photo)
Central Oregon Emergency Information Network - 04/01/20 4:30 PM
2020-04/6117/133018/Portable_Handwashing_Station.jpg
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NEW HANDWASHING STATIONS AVAILABLE IN BEND
New handwashing stations are being installed throughout the Bend area. These handwashing stations provide safe places for people experiencing homeless, delivery drivers, mail carriers, first responders and others to wash their hands throughout the day.

 

Cascade Disposal/Advanced Systems is donating the placement and servicing of portable handwashing stations throughout the Bend community for the month of April. Potential sites include the Downtown Bend Library, Hawthorne Station, Juniper Ridge and some grocery stores. Exact locations of the approx. 10-12 community handwashing stations are being finalized and will be shared when that information is available.

According to the CDC, cleaning your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds can help protect from COVID-19.

OREGON HEALTH PLAN EXPANDS ELIGIBILITY, ACCESS
New services and updated guidelines from Oregon Health Plan (OHP) are aimed to help Oregonians receive the care they need during these challenging times. Individuals whose income has shifted or those who didn’t previously meet enrollment criteria should visit OHP’s website to see about qualifying. Visitors to the site can also learn about newly phased-in telehealth options, such as online appointments for physical and behavioral health.

Federal stimulus payments and increased unemployment payments will not affect eligibility, according to new OHP rules. And individuals can apply for OHP without having to verify their income during the application process — even those who have been denied in the past. Learn more here or call 800-699-9075.

ABOUT COEIN
COEIN’s website, www.coemergencyinfo.blogspot.com provides a collective resource for up-to-date information. Access to accurate, timely information both locally and nationally is encouraged. Our County Public Health experts point to the Oregon Health Authority and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as good sources of information.

Daily situation updates are available via email at http://bit.ly/COVID19UPDATES

Central Oregon Emergency Information Network (COEIN), includes Deschutes County Health Services, Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office, St. Charles Health System, Crook County Health Department, Crook County Sheriff’s Office, Jefferson County Health Department, Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department, tri-county public schools, City of Bend, Bend Police, Bend Fire & Rescue, and others. COEIN’s purpose is to collect, coordinate and distribute timely and accurate information.

Accommodation Information for People with Disabilities  
To obtain this information in an alternate format such as Braille, large print, electronic formats, etc. please contact the COEIN JIC at 541.316.0087 or centraloregoninfo@gmail.com.




Attached Media Files: 2020-04/6117/133018/Portable_Handwashing_Station.jpg

Additional Reporting Resources
Central Oregon Emergency Information Network - 03/31/20 5:11 PM

N E W S   R E L E A S E

For Immediate Release               

Date:  March 31, 2020

From: Central Oregon Emergency Information Network (COEIN)

Contact: JIC Media Line - 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday, 541-316-0087

Additional resources for reporting “stay home” order violations; Supporting St. Charles; Reusable grocery bags; Daily update 3.31.20

REPORTING VIOLATIONS OF ‘STAY HOME, SAVE LIVES’ EXECUTIVE ORDER

Individuals who have questions about Gov. Kate Brown’s executive order limiting business and increasing social distancing requirements can learn more online. Community members who witness a violation of the order can utilize the following resources (NOTE: Do not call 9-1-1.)

For Employees: Oregon OSHA is taking complaints from employees regarding apparent violations of the Governor’s COVID-19 executive order by their employer, in particular social distancing protocol in the workplace. Employees should contact Oregon OSHA if they feel their employer is violating the order: 503-378-3272 or 800-922-2689 (Oregon only); email tech.web@oregon.gov; or use the Online report form.

For General Public: Deschutes County Health Services Environmental Health is responding to complaints of apparent violations of the Governor’s order related to restaurants, pools and hotels. To report an apparent violation at one of the facilities listed above, Contact Environmental Health at 541-317-3114 or use the Online report form.

Bend Park & Recreation District: Community members can call 541-389-7275 during business hours if they observe park use that is not allowed at this time. After hours and on weekends, call 541-388-5435 to report incidents in parks and trails. The district has limited staff resources and is asking for public compliance with park closures, signs and other markings on closed amenities.

Those who believe they see a violation of the “Stay Home, Save Lives” order that don’t fit into these descriptions can call Police non-emergency at 541-693-6911. The Governor’s order is enforceable by law enforcement.

GIVING TO ST. CHARLES FOUNDATION

St. Charles Health System does not have any active crowdfunding campaigns. Anyone who would like to support caregivers and St. Charles’ response to COVID-19 can give at https://foundation.stcharleshealthcare.org/Donate or call 541-706-6969. Each gift, no matter how large or small, is needed and appreciated, and will be used to support caregivers and patients, and allow the health system to meet the needs of our community during this epidemic.

CAN REUSABLE GROCERY BAGS SPREAD COVID-19?

¿Puede propagarse COVID-19 en las bolsas de supermercado reutilizables?

According to the CDC, touching a surface that may have the virus on it is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads. Potential exposure to COVID-19 from handling reusable grocery bags is low, but the Oregon Department of Agriculture has the following recommendations to reduce risk even further:

  • Shopping bags should be washed after every use when carrying food just as you would launder a kitchen towel. Canvas or cloth bags can be laundered in the washer following manufacturer instructions. The inside of plastic-lined bags should be scrubbed using hot water and soap.
  • For all types of grocery shopping bags, remove any inserts (many are cardboard), turn each bag inside out before washing, and pay special attention to the nooks and crannies around the seams. Clean any inserts with a disinfecting spray cleaner and follow the disinfectant label instructions.
  • Find more info about food safety on ODA’s COVID-19 webpage: bit.ly/ODA-COVID19

ABOUT COEIN
COEIN’s website, www.coemergencyinfo.blogspot.com provides a collective resource for up-to-date information. Access to accurate, timely information both locally and nationally is encouraged. Our County Public Health experts point to the Oregon Health Authority and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as good sources of information.

Daily situation updates are available via email at http://bit.ly/COVID19UPDATES

Central Oregon Emergency Information Network (COEIN), includes Deschutes County Health Services, Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office, St. Charles Health System, Crook County Health Department, Crook County Sheriff’s Office, Jefferson County Health Department, Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department, tri-county public schools, City of Bend, Bend Police, Bend Fire & Rescue, and others. COEIN’s purpose is to collect, coordinate and distribute timely and accurate information.

Nationwide, concerns surrounding COVID-19 have led to incidents of harassment and discrimination, particularly against Asian Americans. There is no place for discrimination — in Oregon, or anywhere. The Oregon Department of Justice urges Oregonians to report acts of hate or bias at 844-924-BIAS (2424).

Accommodation Information for People with Disabilities  

To obtain this information in an alternate format such as Braille, large print, electronic formats, etc. please contact the COEIN JIC at 541.316.0087 or aloregoninfo@gmail.com">centraloregoninfo@gmail.com.

 


New resource website launches; free meals for children; reporting discrimination; Daily Digest March 30, 2020 (Photo)
Central Oregon Emergency Information Network - 03/30/20 11:28 AM
Caption: Schools throughout Central Oregon are serving free meals to children. Credit: Kimberly Teichrow
Caption: Schools throughout Central Oregon are serving free meals to children. Credit: Kimberly Teichrow
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As Central Oregon residents continue to seek information related to the COVID-19 response and impacts on individuals and businesses, new resources are becoming available.

The Central Oregon Health Council has a new Central Oregon Resource Directory available at https://www.centraloregonresources.org/ to provide centralized information. With featured resources like food and supplies, transportation and delivery, this new website includes resources for Crook, Deschutes and Jefferson counties. Information includes general services, community specific services and links to organizations providing services. The site is brand new and more resources are being added daily. If you know of a resource that is not listed there, please visit CentralOregonResources.org and click “Submit a Resource.”

The site also features a news feed where visitors can sign up for daily updates.

FREE MEALS AVAILABLE FOR CHILDREN
Central Oregon school districts are providing free, prepackaged meals to children 18 years and under during the COVID-19 school closures. Pickup locations and times for Bend-La Pine Schools, Crook County School District, Jefferson County School District, Redmond School District, and Sisters School District are below. Additional assistance may also be available from NeighborImpact and United Way.

  • Bend:

    • Amity Creek Magnet at Thompson School, 437 NW Wall St, 10:30 a.m. to noon

    • Bend Senior High School, 230 NE Sixth St., 10:30 a.m. to noon

    • Elk Meadow Elementary School, 60880 Brookswood Blvd., 10:30 a.m. to noon

    • Ensworth Elementary School, 2150 NE Dagget Lane, 10:30 a.m. to noon

    • Mountain View High School, 2755 NE 27th St., 10:30 a.m. to noon

    • Pilot Butte Middle School, 1501 NE Neff Rd, 10:30 a.m. to noon

    • R.E. Jewell Elementary School, 20550 Murphy Rd, 10:30 a.m. to noon

  • Crook County: 

    • Powell Butte Area: 

      • Powell Butte School, 11:20 to 11:30 a.m.

      • Juniper Acres, noon to 12:10 p.m.

    • Juniper Canyon Area:

      • Juniper Grove RV Park, noon to 12:10 p.m. 

      • Cayuse at mailboxes, 12:20 to 12:30 p.m. 

      • Remington at mailboxes, 12:40 to 12:50 p.m.

      • Hilltop Road at mailboxes, 1 to 1:10 p.m.

    • Prineville West

      • O’Neil Highway at Wetlands, 11:20 to 11:30 a.m. 

      • End of SW Park Drive, 11:40 to 11:50 a.m.

      • Ochoco School Crossing, noon to 12:10 p.m.

      • NW 10th and NW Glenwood, 12:05 to 12:15 p.m.

      • Western Sky, 12:15 to 12:25 p.m.

      • Ochoco West, 12:40 to 12:50 p.m.

    • Prineville East

      • Ridgeview Commons, noon to 12:10

      • Crystal Corral RV Park, 12:20 to 12:30 p.m. 

      • Lakshore RV Park, 12:40 to 12:50 p.m.

    • Prineville North

      • Mariposa and Larry Court, 12:25 to 12:35 p.m. 

      • Yellowpine Park, 12:40 to 12:50 p.m.

      • 3050 N. Main Street, 1 to 1:10 p.m. 

    • Prineville South

      • Los Árboles Trailer Park, 11:45 to 11:55 a.m.

  • La Pine High School, 51633 Coach Road, 10:30 a.m. to noon

  • Madras area:

    • Madras High School, 9:30– 10:30 a.m.

    • Bridges High School, 9:30 – 10:30 a.m.

    • Madras Catholic Church, 9:30 – 9:45 a.m.

    • Tops Trailer Park, 10:15 – 10:30 a.m.

    • Jefferson Street & 97-Mart, 10:45 – 11:00 a.m.

  • Metolius Elementary, 9:30 – 10:30 a.m.

  • Redmond High School, 9:00 – 10:30 a.m.

  • Sisters Elementary School, 8:00 – 8:30 a.m. and 11:30 – noon

  • Warm Springs area

    • Warm Springs K-8,  9:30 – 10:30 a.m.

    • West Hills at Poosh & West Hills Drive, 9:30 – 9:45 a.m.

    • Tenino Apartments, 10:00 – 10:15 a.m.

    • Trailer Court at Little Oitz & Kuckup Street, 10:30 – 10:45 a.m.

    • Seekseequa in the Firehall parking lot, 11:15 – 11:30 a.m.

    • Upper Dry Creek at Tommie Street at the North End, 9:30 – 9:45 a.m.

    • Sunnyside, at Crestview Drive & Sunnyside Drive, 10:00 – 10:15 a.m.

    • Wolfe Point Drive at first paved road on left, 10:30 – 10:45 a.m.

    • Kah-Nee-Ta at the Hamlets, 11:00 – 11:15 a.m.

    • Simnasho & Hwy 3 in the Longhouse parking lot, 11:30 – 11:45 a.m.

REMINDER: Hours Expand for Local COVID-19 Hotline: 541-699-5109
Now with increased hours, Central Oregon's free COVID-19 nonemergency hotline is open from 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., Monday to Friday. Call to connect with a caregiver or county health professional. This partnership between St. Charles Health System and Deschutes County Health Services, which debuted on March 17, is currently averaging 175 calls per day and is open to all residents of Crook, Deschutes and Jefferson counties.

HOW TO REPORT INCIDENTS OF HARASSMENT, DISCRIMINATION
Nationwide, concerns surrounding COVID-19 have led to incidents of harassment and discrimination, particularly against Asian Americans. There is no place for discrimination — in Oregon, or anywhere. The Oregon Department of Justice urges Oregonians to report acts of hate or bias at 844-924-BIAS (2424).

ABOUT COEIN
COEIN’s website, www.coemergencyinfo.blogspot.com provides a collective resource for up-to-date information. Access to accurate, timely information both locally and nationally is encouraged. Our County Public Health experts point to the Oregon Health Authority and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as good sources of information.

Daily situation updates are available via email at http://bit.ly/COVID19UPDATES

Central Oregon Emergency Information Network (COEIN), includes Deschutes County Health Services, Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office, St. Charles Health System, Crook County Health Department, Crook County Sheriff’s Office, Jefferson County Health Department, Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department, tri-county public schools, City of Bend, Bend Police, Bend Fire & Rescue, and others. COEIN’s purpose is to collect, coordinate and distribute timely and accurate information.

Accommodation Information for People with Disabilities  
To obtain this information in an alternate format such as Braille, large print, electronic formats, etc. please contact the COEIN JIC at 541.316.0087 or centraloregoninfo@gmail.com.

 

 




Attached Media Files: Caption: Schools throughout Central Oregon are serving free meals to children. Credit: Kimberly Teichrow

Organizations
The Homeless Are Helping the Needy of Central Oregon (Photo)
Shepherd's House Ministries - 04/02/20 4:30 AM
2020-04/3949/133021/serving.jpg
2020-04/3949/133021/serving.jpg
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Today marks the 11th day of feeding hungry people at Shepherd’s House. We have been overwhelmed by the need, but daily provisions keep coming and people are fed.  To date, we have served 4430 meals and countless supplies to hundreds, including the homeless and many who have lost jobs and now count on Shepherd’s House for food.

The 30 program residents living full-time at Shepherds House are the heroes of the day.  They are collecting, packing, and serving food and hand it out with a big smile on their faces. They have a unique perspective on the current crisis, most having been homeless at one time themselves. This gives them a unique perspective and empathy for those in need. They are deeply moved by the situation and love to help.

Shepherd’s House is still counting on the generosity of the Central Oregon Community to provide food, clothes, supplies, and monetary donations to help us continue this important community outreach.

 

Our service to the community start at 1 pm, Monday through Friday. 

You can get help at:

1854 NE Division Street in Bend

 

Or you can drop off your donations from 9 am to 4 pm, Monday through Friday.

 

Needed Items:

•Pre-packaged food items

•Other non-perishable food items

•Milk, Eggs, and Bread

•Pre-made food bags

•Any other food items you can part with

•Critical supplies such as toilet paper and hand sanitizer

 Monetary donations also help us replenish our supply line.

A donation can be dropped off, mailed, or given online at:

https://shepherdshouseministries.org/donate/

 

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Attached Media Files: 2020-04/3949/133021/serving.jpg

Klamath County and City of Klamath Falls Team Up To Help Local Restaurants (Photo)
Klamath Co. Chamber of Commerce - 04/03/20 8:00 AM
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This week, both Klamath County and the City of Klamath Falls voted to donate $25,000 each to bolster the local restaurant industry while also paying it forward to nonprofits in town that help feed people in need such as the Klamath Food Bank. “The restaurant food and beverage industry is a vital part of our local economy.  I want to thank the Chamber of Commerce and Food Bank for their willingness to set up this program to support our restaurants and feed those in need in our community.  I am encouraged by the incredible support our community has shown our restaurants and other small businesses.  Together we will ensure that everyone makes it through this crisis.  The support everyone in Klamath has shown each other is incredible and the reason why we will come back from this stronger than ever,” said Commissioner Degroot. The County funds will be distributed throughout the County and will include the restaurants and nonprofits in outlying areas. “We are happy to help with these efforts and thank both the City and the County for supporting the local businesses,” said Heather Tramp, the Chamber’s Executive Director.

The City also voted to donate money directly to the Klamath Food Bank in addition. City Council Member Todd Andres said, “The City of Klamath Falls is proud to provide $10,000 directly to the food bank to help those who suddenly find themselves in need.  This is just one part of the $135,000 the City has dedicated to immediately support our local community through this crisis.”

The details of the program are under development and will be shared over the next week. For more information, please contact the Chamber at (541) 884-5193 or by email at eception@klamath.org" target="_blank">reception@klamath.org.




Attached Media Files: 2020-04/1602/133067/20200331_120705.jpg

Organizations & Associations
M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust announces first round of COVID-19 emergency support grants to Pacific Northwest nonprofits totaling $5.4 million
M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust - 04/01/20 10:31 AM

April 1, 2020

For Immediate Release

 

M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust announces first round of COVID-19 emergency support grants to Pacific Northwest nonprofits totaling $5.4 million

Grants include $1.2 million for Oregon nonprofits

 

Vancouver, WA - This week, the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust announced our first round of grants providing emergency support related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

  • In total, Trustees approved $5.4 million in grants to 49 nonprofits. This includes $1.2 million for Oregon nonprofits.
  • Our primary focus for investments with this round of grants has been in three areas:
    • Medical research regarding COVID-19 treatment and testing. ($1.5 Million)
    • Reinforcing supplies and capacity for front-line healthcare providers, including increased COVID-19 testing capacity. ($2.7 Million)
    • Contributing to community impact funds managed by the outstanding community foundations of the Pacific Northwest to provide immediate resources to those in need. ($1.4 Million)
  • We remain in discussion with nonprofits and leaders across our community to help inform future grantmaking into areas of emerging need, including addressing capacity needs of foodbanks and other emergency services. Our existing quarterly cycle remains active and capacity building grants will continue to be made throughout 2020 in addition to our emergency relief funding throughout the Pacific Northwest.

 

The Murdock Trust funding philosophy has always been to listen to the individuals and nonprofit organizations who are on the front lines of the communities we serve. These leaders and organizations understand best the unique needs of their community and are instrumental in helping us provide support to the diverse needs of the Pacific Northwest.

 

As the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has grown, there has been much discussion within the nonprofit and philanthropic world regarding how funders can best support the organizations serving the wide variety of needs emerging within our communities. Funders across the country and around the world agree – this cannot be “business as usual.” For the Trust, that has meant the following steps:

 

  • In line with our mission to serve and uplift all communities across the Pacific Northwest, we have worked to quickly engage leaders from across the sectors and region we serve to best understand the immediate and anticipated needs facing individuals, families and nonprofits.
  • We have launched an expedited grant process to deliver immediate financial investment to nonprofits to help address the needs raised by the COVID-19 pandemic head on. We continue to pursue strategic opportunities to make investments in areas that have not received significant public or private investment.
  • We have provided increased flexibility to our current grantees who may have projects impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • We are pairing nonprofits with some of our region’s best leadership and development coaches, providing hundreds of hours in no-cost support to help organizations prepare to successfully navigate the challenging path ahead.
  • We are working to connect nonprofits and their leaders with additional resources and guidance on our website at murdocktrust.org/covid19 so that they can best serve their constituents. If you have a resource that you would like help amplifying to our community during this time, please send it directly to Colby Reade – yr@murdocktrust.org">colbyr@murdocktrust.org.

 

We share our unending gratitude to the individuals and groups across our region who are putting their own health and well-being at risk to serve others. Our thanks, thoughts and prayers are with our front-line healthcare workers, community volunteers, trucking and delivery drivers, grocery and pharmacy employees and all who are working for the common good.

 

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Nurseries and greenhouses are hiring during record unemployment
Oregon Association of Nurseries - 03/30/20 5:23 PM

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Wilsonville — March 30, 2020 — The Oregon Association of Nurseries (www.oan.org) is publishing an online list of nursery and greenhouse businesses that have indicated they are hiring seasonal and temporary help. 

As unemployment rates skyrocket during the COVID-19 outbreak, this list provides the contact information of potential employers for anyone who may have recently been laid off or displaced from work. 

“Spring is the peak season for agricultural workers in the ornamental plant industry,” OAN Executive Director Jeff Stone said. “We operate within a tight time window, set by Mother Nature, so that we can move a beautiful but perishable product to market when it’s needed. Some of our growers have come forward to say they need help and have jobs available for people. If people can work and customers across the United States can still receive Oregon-grown plants and trees, which are the best in the country, it’s a win-win.”

Agriculture is broadly recognized as an essential sector of the economy, and Oregon’s wholesale and retail nurseries are continuing to operate under the ‘Stay Home, Save Lives’ executive order issued by Oregon Gov. Kate Brown on March 23.

As a dependable industry to work in, Oregon’s nurseries and greenhouses generated nearly $1 billion in sales in 2018, according to the Oregon Department of Agriculture — making them the #1 segment in Oregon agriculture. Nearly 80% of the plants and trees grown in Oregon are shipped out-of-state and internationally. 

Positions may be available at all levels of production, often with little to no prior experience in agriculture required. Safety training is integrated into standard work assignments. Retail positions also may be available.

 “Our industry cares about safe practices,” Stone said. “Mitigating the spread of pests and plant diseases has been an ongoing initiative throughout the history of Oregon’s ag sector, and our growers are used to stringent procedures to protect quality and health.” 

The nature of the manual and skilled labor assignments are often outdoors or in designated workspaces that are already in compliance with social distancing recommendations. Measures are already in place to protect staff and consumers from the spread of pathogens in safe work environments. 

The Oregon Association of Nurseries’ seasonal/temporary help page will be updated regularly and can be found at www.oan.org/seasonalhelp.

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CONTACT:

Curt Kipp, Oregon Association of Nurseries, ckipp@oan.org. The Oregon Association of Nurseries, based in Wilsonville, represents more than 700 wholesale growers, retailers, landscapers and suppliers. Oregon’s ornamental horticulture industry is the state’s largest agricultural commodity, with annual sales of $996 million in 2018. It is also a traded sector, with about 75 percent of the nursery plants grown in Oregon being shipped out of state. For information, visit www.oan.org or email info@oan.org.




Attached Media Files: 2020-03/1413/132940/OAN_jobs_20200330_fin.pdf

New fund to help Oregon businesses respond to coronavirus
SAIF - 03/31/20 11:03 AM

Summary: The coronavirus worker safety fund will help pay for expenses tied to making workplaces safer.

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A new resource will help eligible Oregon businesses pay for expenses tied to making their workplaces safer against the coronavirus and responding to the impact the pandemic has had on workers.

Established by SAIF, the $10 million coronavirus worker safety fund is designed to support employee safety, reduce injuries, and decrease exposures by helping businesses impacted by the coronavirus. More than 53,000 SAIF policyholders across the state are eligible for funds.

The fund will help businesses pay for expenses tied to making workplaces safer against the virus and dealing with the impact of the pandemic on workers. Eligible expenses could include worksite cleaning and disinfection supplies; resources to reopen businesses safely after a coronavirus-related closure; resources to redesign or modify workspaces to encourage social distancing; and mental health and wellness initiatives.

“Our vision is to make Oregon the safest and healthiest place to work,” said Kerry Barnett, president and CEO of SAIF. “That has never been more important than now.”

Expenses incurred on or after March 1 will be considered. The application, along with additional details about the fund, can be found at saif.com/safetyfund. SAIF will accept submissions until all funds have been expended or until the fund is no longer needed.

“Our goal is to respond quickly to help businesses in this time of greatest need, and we will continue to look at the need for this type of assistance and how we can best support Oregon’s businesses and workers,” said Barnett.

Interviews: We have local leaders and safety and health experts from SAIF available across the state for interviews—please contact Lauren if you’d like more details and contact information.

About SAIF
SAIF is Oregon's not-for-profit workers' compensation insurance company. For more than 100 years, we've been taking care of injured workers, helping people get back to work, and striving to make Oregon the safest and healthiest place to work. For more information, visit the About SAIF page on saif.com.