I am a school bus driver for our local school district and am speaking as a driver without prior approval from our district. I feel it is important to let the public in and around Hood River know a few issues we face every day.
In Oregon, we have one of the highest rates of sexual assault in the nation. In the last decade, more than 205 Oregonians has lost their lives to intimate partner violence and nearly three-quarters of those deaths have occurred in the last four years.
The Hood River County Republican Central Committee unanimously thanks Congressman Greg Walden for being one of the 144 Republicans who had the common sense to say “no” to the “kicking our country’s budget and debt crisis down the road” to be increased again in three months.
Don’t be alarmed: The hum from my basement in coming weeks is just my bank of fruit dryers.
Thirty-one years ago a group was putting together a harvest event at the old Diamond Fruit Cannery on Cascade Street. They wanted some orchard participation so I, being a young orchardist with apples abundant but little money, picked some Golden Delicious apples, grabbed a bunch of used paper grocery bags, an old scale, and a pocket full of change and headed down to the event.
Over these first weeks of the new school year, I’ve had the opportunity to spend time in each of our schools.
I think I can safely say that I’ve seen fire and I’ve seen rain.
Talk to a coach, athlete or parent involved in team sports and you’ll hear about our county’s ball field shortage.
As I carried a box of cookies into Journalism class for our end of the year party, which was themed “The Dundies,” my teacher Dave Case asked if I would take a walk with him so we could discuss ideas for the upcoming school year. On the walk, he asked me if I would be willing to be the new content editor for the Talon, since the other editor, Alia Burck, would be graduating. I quickly accepted the offer and forecasted to take the class as a junior, assuming my future schedule would allow it.
Hood River Valley Parks and Rec has been awarded a $494,000 grant from the Oregon State Parks Local Government Grant Program via the State Lottery Commission for development of Barrett Park. The District is in danger of having to decline the funds if it cannot obtain the development permit previously approved by the County Board of Commissioners. Without a permit, the money cannot be spent and the land will remain in its current undeveloped state indefinitely.
Despite the Washington Supreme Court’s recent decision, the Whistling Ridge Energy Project remains a poorly sited and designed project that threatens the Columbia Gorge’s scenery, wildlife and communities, while promising little to no benefits for a region already oversaturated with wind energy. Fortunately, the court’s decision is not the final word in the public debate over this ill-conceived proposal.
“I think the American people are tired of war.”
As students head back to school for 2013-14, it’s good to keep in mind the impact that teachers can have on young people.
The lead story from Saturday, Aug. 17 News, “What’s the big picture for schools?”, describes the new Oregon Kindergarten Assessment program as a measurement of …“early literacy, math, social-emotional development and self-regulation.” Rep. Mark Johnson emphasizes the word readiness, “because readiness is essentially what OKA looks at.” And he asks us to keep an open mind on OKA, saying “it is an assessment to help us determine how we’re doing in that early pre-K(indergarten). We need to assess.”
With the annexation to the City of the Westcliff Drive lodging properties decided upon, the implications will come to bear on a wider range of our local Hood River economy than many expect.