Willamette Valley News, Tuesday 5/2 – OSU Campus Safety Issues Alert Over Threat To Detonate Explosives, 4J School District Invites Public to Suicide Prevention Training Tonight

The latest news stories and stories of interest in the Willamette Valley from the digital home of Southern Oregon, from Wynne Broadcasting’s WillametteValleyMagazine.com

Tuesday, May 3, 2022

Willamette Valley Weather

OSU Campus Safety Issues Alert Over Threat To Detonate Explosives

The Oregon State University Department of Public Safety has issued an alert after they received a 911 call with a person threatening to detonate explosives within a vehicle on Monday evening.

According to the alert sent out, the individual described the vehicle as either a red Dodge Charger or a Beige 1964 Chevy Malibu within the OSU Corvallis campus.

OSU and Corvallis community members are being asked to keep an eye out and to call 911 if they see anything.

This is a developing story and is under investigation. https://fa.oregonstate.edu/gen-manual/university-bomb-threat-procedures

4J School District Invites Public to Suicide Prevention Training Tonight

In March, Lane County officials reported 11 suicides in young people over a five month period.

With this alarming information, the Eugene 4J School District is hosting a suicide prevention training event Tuesday night for parents and students.

4J’s Angi Meyer says the 90-minute session is focused on recognizing the signs of suicide in children. It will also provide instruction on suicide prevention measures.

Parents will also be more informed on what to do and where to go to get their child help.

Meyer, who is a suicide prevention and risk assessment specialist, says that the kind of number the county sees in a year is cause for concern.

“Here in 4J, we activated the 4J Suicide Rapid Response Network, which is Oregon Health Authority, Lines for Life and then Lane County Public Health,” Meyer says, “and they all work together with us to put together resources and try to have some extra interventions for students.”

Meyer continues: “There’s a variety of signs. Some are behavioral, some are situational and some are not as visible. There’s a variety of things when you see withdraw. A student withdraws from something they normally found joy in. Or, you see a sudden interest in something that might be a little bit off.”

The training will also provide instruction on suicide prevention measures with QPR, which stands for Question, Persuade and Refer – a three step process to identify and interrupt a crisis and direct that person to proper care.

The training also comes after last week’s event focusing on recognizing self harm, which the district says has been a growing mental health issue.

And then there’s social media to add to the mix with this type of situation in general, which Meyer refers to as a challenge, “because it’s kind of foreign to most parents and it’s changing faster than we can keep up. And so, I think just be checking in with your child. We always say all the time that connection is prevention. So talk to your child, find out how they’re doing, what they’re doing and how does it make them feel. And try to set limits as much as possible.”

The suicide prevention training is Tuesday night from 6-7 p.m. at South Eugene High School. The public is invited to attend.

EWEB Accidently Knocks Out Power for Thousands

Thousands of Eugene residents experienced power outages Monday morning, but it has since been resolved, according to the Eugene Water & Electric Board.

The outages affected roughly 4,500 EWEB customers, according to EWEB communications specialist Aaron Orlowski. The outages were primarily in the south Eugene Hills and College Hill neighborhood, and happened at 11:16 a.m., according to the EWEB outage map.

It happened when an EWEB crew was performing relay testing at the Monroe substation when the testing inadvertently tripped the station offline, Orlowski said. Power was restored at around 11:30, he said, noting that it often takes a few minutes for the outage map to update once everything is fixed.

The testing is meant to ensure that the equipment is functioning correctly to protect the system, and occasionally those errors happen, Orlowski said. The equipment was not damaged and is functioning correctly now, he added.

“We’re grateful to EWEB’s customers as they sat through this quick 15-minute outage,” Orlowski said.

Oregon Department Of Environmental Quality Awards $1.3 Million To Support Smoke Preparedness And Alternatives To Burning

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality has awarded $1.3M in grant funding to 20 organizations and county and tribal governments across the state to work on projects related to smoke management. The 2022 Smoke Management Grants were made available as part of Senate Bill 762 (2021) , which promotes wildfire preparedness by creating fire-adapted communities, developing safe and effective wildfire and smoke responses and increasing the resiliency of Oregon’s landscape.

Grants support projects that create alternatives to outdoor burning of yard debris or slash, enhance tribes’ smoke preparedness, develop Community Response Plans and implement previously finalized CRP plans.

“Every year in Oregon, we are seeing an increase in the frequency and intensity of wildfires and the damaging effects smoke has on our health,” said Michael Orman, air planning program manager, Oregon DEQ. “This one-time funding will go a long way in helping to reduce the impact poor air quality has on communities, including many who already have respiratory illnesses and are sensitive to smoky conditions.”

Grant recipients are tribes, local municipalities, counties, forest collaboratives and private businesses. Projects include:
– Developing Community Response Plans to prepare for and respond to potential smoke impacts
– Implementing previously developed Community Response Plans
– Creating community clean air spaces, including distribution of HEPA filtration to community members for in-home use
– Integrating smoke notifications into existing alert systems
– Promoting fuels reduction through creation of defensible spaces and converting logging slash and other woody debris to chips or firewood
– Purchasing of a masticator to reduce the cost for small woodlot owners who decrease fuels on their property
– Using an air curtain incinerator to address wood waste from orchard trimming

Grant recipients will conduct projects in the following counties: Coos, Deschutes, Douglas, Harney, Hood River, Jackson, Jefferson, Josephine, Klamath, Lake, Lane, Lincoln, Marion, Multnomah, Polk, Tillamook, Umatilla, Union, Wallowa, Wasco, Washington and Yamhill. For a full list of grant recipients and project titles, visit https://go.usa.gov/xumnN.

Smoke from wildfire and prescribed burns has the potential to harm Oregonian’s air and quality of life. Through continued work by DEQ and community partners, Oregon can better prepare to respond to smoke impacts and reduce wildfire risk. For updates on smoke and wildfires in Oregon, visit https://oregonsmoke.blogspot.com/. For details on prescribed burning on forestlands, go to https://go.usa.gov/xumUE.

About the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality
The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality protects human health and the environment by controlling air and water pollution, reducing the impacts of manufactured products and cleaning up contaminated properties. DEQ engages the public in decision-making and helps communities solve problems in ways that are economically and environmentally sustainable.

State publishes draft Action Plan for $422 million in federal disaster recovery funding

Five public hearings to be held in local communities

SALEM, Ore. – Oregon Housing and Community Services (OHCS) published a draft Action Plan✎ EditSign for a $422 million disaster recovery grant, funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The effort, known as “ReOregon,” will support individuals, households, and communities that continue to recover from the 2020 Labor Day Fires. The assistance will primarily come in the form of new permanent housing in the areas most impacted by the disaster. 

Through June 1, OHCS is seeking public comment on the draft Action Plan for spending the funds, known as Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR). Members of the public are invited to provide their input on the draft Action Plan in person at the following public hearings.

Oregon Coast CC-North CampusMonday, May 16, 2022Open House: 5 p.m.Public hearing: 6 p.m.Community Room (#108)3788 SE High School Drive, Lincoln CityGates Community Christ Church Tuesday, May 17, 2022Open House: 5 p.m.Public hearing: 6 p.m.40070 Gates School Road, GatesMcKenzie River Community SchoolWednesday, May 18, 2022Open House: 5 p.m.Public hearing: 6 p.m.“New” Gym51187 Blue River Drive, Vida 
Talent Community CenterThursday, May 19, 2022Open House: 5 p.m.Public hearing: 6 p.m.(Behind City Hall)104 E. Main St., TalentTalent Community Center Presentation in SpanishTuesday, May 24, 2022Open House: 5 p.m.Public hearing: 6 p.m.(Behind City Hall)104 E. Main St., Talent 

Spanish and ASL translation services will be available at all of the public hearings. To request additional accommodations, please contact OHCS via e-mail at eOregon@hcs.oregon.gov“>ReOregon@hcs.oregon.gov or by phone at 833-604-0878.

In addition to providing comment in person, the public may also do so by:

All comments must be submitted to OHCS no later than 11:59 p.m. June 1, 2022. After the 30-day public comment period, feedback will be incorporated into the plan before OHCS submits it to HUD for review and approval before the June 8 deadline. 

Printed copies of the plan are available by request. To request a copy of the plan, contact OHCS via e-mail at eOregon@hcs.oregon.gov“>ReOregon@hcs.oregon.gov, by phone at 833-604-0878, or visit https://re.oregon.gov/.

We want to keep you informed about COVID-19 in Oregon. Data are provisional and change frequently. This report covers the three-day period from April 29 to May 1, 2022. Visit our dashboard, linked below, and hover over the new cases graph to view new presumptive and confirmed case numbers reported to OHA by date. For more information, including COVID-19 data by county, visit our dashboard: http://ow.ly/uxnc50IXnFA

Screen shot of linked dashboard shows an increase trend in cases, test positivity and hospitalizations. Vaccinations have plateaued. Please visit healthoregon.org/coronavirus for more information.

New coronavirus cases leaped in Oregon in the week ending Sunday, rising 46.3% as 6,965 cases were reported. The previous week had 4,760 new cases of the virus that causes COVID-19.

Oregon ranked 13th among the states where coronavirus was spreading the fastest on a per-person basis, a USA TODAY Network analysis of Johns Hopkins University data shows. In the latest week, coronavirus cases in the United States increased 8.9% from the week before, with 381,004 cases reported. With 1.27% of the country’s population, Oregon had 1.83% of the country’s cases in the last week. Across the country, 41 states had more cases in the latest week than they did in the week before.

Lane County reported 522 cases and one death in the latest week. A week earlier, it had reported 324 cases and one death. Throughout the pandemic, it has reported 58,401 cases and 533 deaths.

Within Oregon, the worst weekly outbreaks on a per-person basis were in Multnomah County with 287 cases per 100,000 per week; Benton County with 285; and Washington County with 206. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says high levels of community transmission begin at 100 cases per 100,000 per week.

Adding the most new cases overall were Multnomah County, with 2,331 cases; Washington County, with 1,239 cases; and Clackamas County, with 753. Weekly case counts rose in 26 counties from the previous week. The worst increases from the prior week’s pace were in Multnomah, Washington and Clackamas counties.

Oregon ranked 20th among states in share of people receiving at least one shot, with 77.9% of its residents at least partially vaccinated. The national rate is 77.6%, a USA TODAY analysis of CDC data shows. The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, which are the most used in the United States, require two doses administered a few weeks apart.

In the week ending Sunday, Oregon reported administering another 54,536 vaccine doses, including 4,387 first doses. In the previous week, the state administered 64,541 vaccine doses, including 4,707 first doses. In all, Oregon reported it has administered 7,788,988 total doses.

Across Oregon, cases fell in eight counties, with the best declines in Umatilla County, with 28 cases from 36 a week earlier; in Lake County, with two cases from eight; and in Baker County, with one case from four.

In Oregon, 25 people were reported dead of COVID-19 in the week ending Sunday. In the week before that, 34 people were reported dead.

A total of 721,311 people in Oregon have tested positive for the coronavirus since the pandemic began, and 7,502 people have died from the disease, Johns Hopkins University data shows. In the United States, 81,365,218 people have tested positive and 993,733 people have died.

Oregon’s COVID-19 hospital admissions rising

USA TODAY analyzed federal hospital data as of Sunday.

Likely COVID-19 patients admitted in the state:

  • Last week: 663
  • The week before that: 585
  • Four weeks ago: 492

Likely COVID-19 patients admitted in the nation:

  • Last week: 43,243
  • The week before that: 39,428
  • Four weeks ago: 37,216

Hospitals in 34 states reported more COVID-19 patients than a week earlier, while hospitals in 34 states had more COVID-19 patients in intensive-care beds. Hospitals in 38 states admitted more COVID-19 patients in the latest week than a week prior, the USA TODAY analysis of U.S. Health and Human Services data shows.

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Oregon to Honor Fallen Law Enforcement Officers — May 3, 2022 AT 1 PM

The 2022 Fallen Law Enforcement Memorial Ceremony will take place at 1 p.m. on Tuesday, May 3rd, 2022.

Three fallen Oregon law enforcement officers will be honored at this year’s ceremony; S. Allen Burdic of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, EOW 3/11/21; John R. Burright of the Oregon State Police, EOW 5/4/21; and Carl L. Frazier of the Lane County Sheriff’s Office, EOW 10/9/1979.

Department of Public Safety Standards & Training : Oregon Fallen Law  Enforcement Memorial : Law Enforcement Memorial : State of Oregon

The State’s memorial honors 192 fallen Oregon law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty since the 1860s. This includes officers from city, county, state, tribal and federal law enforcement agencies who have served as law enforcement officers, corrections officers, and parole and probation officers.

 The Oregon Fallen Law Enforcement Officers’ Memorial Ceremony is a significant event that the Department of Public Safety Standards and Training (DPSST) is proud to host each year in partnership with the Oregon Law Enforcement Memorial Fund, Oregon Concerns of Police Survivors (C.O.P.S.), Oregon Fallen Badge Foundation, and Oregon’s various statewide law enforcement associations.

 DPSST plans to live stream the event through the DPSST Facebook page as well as video record the ceremony.  A link to the video will be posted as soon as the video is ready to be shared. Ore. Dept. of Public Safety Standards and Training

To Celebrate Small Business Week, Umpqua Bank is Matching Microloan Contributions 10x for BIPOC, Women Entrepreneurs

Crowdfunding partnership with Kiva provides accelerated access to capital for entrepreneurs across Oregon, Washington, California, and Idaho           

Individuals or organizations interested in helping minority and women entrepreneurs secure a microloan to launch or grow a business can do so this Small Business Week (May 2-6) through the Umpqua Bank Loan Fund, a crowdfunding program with the nonprofit Kiva that will multiply every dollar contributed 10 times for eligible entrepreneurs in Oregon, Washington, California, and Idaho. Donations vary in size starting at $25, and anyone interested in contributing can visit www.kiva.org/team/umpquabank to learn more and donate.

Umpqua established its $1 million loan fund with Kiva earlier this year to accelerate the ability of underserved entrepreneurs to access no-cost microloans. Any entrepreneur with “social capital”—the support of family, friends or community—can qualify to set a funding goal and raise contributions on Kiva’s platform. Kiva then combines total contributions into a 0% interest loan up to $15,000 that’s paid back to funders over time.

According to Umpqua’s Chief Marketing Communications Officer Eve Callahan, who oversees the bank’s partnership with Kiva, Umpqua is leveraging Kiva’s innovative crowdfunding platform and focus on storytelling to create deeper connections between aspiring entrepreneurs and ordinary people that ultimately lead to diversified community investment and prosperity. 

“Umpqua recognized a unique opportunity to partner with Kiva to combine community and capital. Through the Umpqua Bank Loan Fund, we’re creating a platform for entrepreneurs to share their stories and connect directly with people looking for opportunities to contribute to economic opportunity and justice,” said Callahan. “Recognizing the incredible importance of small businesses to our local communities and economies, we’re increasing our match to celebrate Small Business Week. We hope others will join us in helping entrepreneurs across the West Coast continue to grow by contributing any amount, small or large, that we’ll match 10 times.” 

Since launching earlier this year, the Umpqua Bank Loan Fund has matched community members’ contributions 3:1, resulting in more than $400,000 in microloans that have fully financed the needs of more than 80 BIPOC or women entrepreneurs. 

Umpqua Loan Fund Open to Entrepreneurs

Eligible entrepreneurs in Oregon, Washington, California, and Idaho can apply for Umpqua’s matching program by visiting the Umpqua-Kiva partnership page. The initial application process typically takes between 20 and 30 minutes.

The Fund in Action

Umpqua’s loan fund has already provided microloan funding to entrepreneurs across the West Coast, including:

  • In Oregon, it equipped an immigrant family business that buys and sells artisanal goods from Mexico to diversify and expand its inventory. 
  • In California, it helped a women owned clothing business gain access to the quality inventory needed to sustain and relaunch the brand, as well financed a non-profit helping youth avoid gun violence through positive alternatives and programs. 
  • In Washington, it provided a creative wedding photographer with the funding needed to purchase equipment and space to expand his business. 

Entrepreneurs across Umpqua’s footprint continue actively seeking funding through the bank’s loan fund for accelerated access to crowdfunded microloans of varying amounts. Their stories and how they will use the capital to launch a business or add new products, equipment, and jobs in local communities can be found at www.kiva.org/team/umpquabank/loans

About Umpqua Bank
Umpqua Bank, headquartered in Roseburg, Ore., is a subsidiary of Umpqua Holdings Corporation, and has locations across Idaho, Washington, Oregon, California, Arizona, and Nevada. Umpqua Bank has been recognized for its innovative customer experience and banking strategy by national publications including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, BusinessWeek, Fast Company and CNBC. The company has been recognized for eight years in a row on FORTUNE magazine’s list of the country’s “100 Best Companies to Work For,” and was recently named by The Portland Business Journal the Most Admired Financial Services Company in Oregon for the 17th consecutive year. In addition to its retail banking presence, Umpqua Bank also owns Financial Pacific Leasing, Inc., a nationally recognized commercial finance company that provides equipment leases to businesses.

About Kiva
Kiva is a global nonprofit that brings people together to invest in lasting impact. Kiva connects individuals, institutional investors, and corporations with global opportunities to invest in humanity—when and where it will make the greatest collective impact. With as little as $25, you can help women, refugees and small businesses across the globe build a better future for individuals, their families and communities. Join two million people who have invested $1.7 billion in real dreams and real opportunity around the world. 

Portland Breaks Rainfall Record

Portland broke its record for the rainiest April in city history, getting drenched with at least 5.60 inches of rainfall by 5 p.m. Saturday, according to the National Weather Service. That total was expected to climb a bit higher before the end of the day, said Clinton Rockey, a National Weather Service meteorologist.

This year’s April was a far cry from last year’s, when Portland got just 0.39 inches of rain, breaking the city’s record for the driest April in history, Rockey said. According to National Weather Service rainfall records, which have been taken at Portland International Airport since 1939, the city’s old record for rain came in 1993, when the city got 5.26 inches. The average rainfall in April for Portland is about 2.89 inches, Rockey said.

May is Wildfire Awareness Month

May is Wildfire Awareness Month and there are warnings to get prepared for another potentially active fire season.

Wildfire Awareness Month is a campaign to help remind the public that we have to be diligent and we need to prepare for the wildfire season that is nearing. The National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC) in Boise, Idaho, is stressing the importance of attention and personal responsibility.

The NIFC issued the Significant Wildland Fire Potential Outlook ✎ EditSignfor the month of May and the upcoming summer months that you can find in the slideshow below, with each depicting a section of central Oregon in the “Above Normal” category.

The above-normal potential spreads across northern California, southern Oregon and the lower Columbia Basin by the time we reach August. This will include areas of Washington too.

“As we highlight National Wildland Fire Preparedness Month in May, it’s important to note that 89% of all wildfires are caused by people,” NIFC stated. “We can minimize the serious impacts to our communities by focusing on prevention. In a year like this, every preventative measure we take could be the difference between disaster and a safe and enjoyable summer for ourselves and our communities.”

You can find the comprehensive details of the outlook here: https://www.predictiveservices.nifc.gov/outlooks/monthly_seasonal_outlook.pdf✎ EditSign

Three-Day Exercise This Week To Evaluate Response Plans For A Large-Scale Pacific Northwest Earthquake And Tsunami

A three-day exercise this week intends to evaluate the federal government’s coordinated response with state and local response plans for a large-scale Pacific Northwest earthquake and tsunami.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency
(FEMA) is conducting the comprehensive exercise for a (CSZ) Earthquake and Tsunami
Response Plan. 

It says more than 1,800 federal, tribal, state, local, private sector, non-governmental organizations and scientific community partners were involved in the CSZ planning effort so, “The lessons learned from this ROC Exercise will be incorporated into both an updated CSZ Response Plan and into FEMA’s response operational
procedures.”

The exercise occurs Wednesday through Friday, May 3-5, when FEMA Region 10 will host Cascadia Rising 2022: Rehearsal of Concept as a three-day discussion-based exercise at the Pierce County Readiness Center in Camp Murray, Washington. 

Participants include emergency management representatives from Oregon Alaska, Idaho and Washington, tribal partners, U.S. Department of Defense, American Red Cross, Emergency Management British Columbia and FEMA.

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Grants Pass Missing Person

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The Grants Pass Police Department is seeking assistance from the public in locating 30 year old Noah Baker.  Baker was despondent after an argument and left his residence in Grants Pass driving a silver Ford Fiesta with Oregon Plate 671MUR.  

Baker is described as a white male adult, 5’09”, 170 lbs, brown hair and blue eyes and was last seen wearing black sweats, black shirt, black shoes and a black hat.  

If anyone knows of his whereabouts or sees Baker, please call your local law enforcement agency or the Grants Pass Police at 541-450-6260. Reference case #2022-14203 Grants Pass Police Department 

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Klamath County Sheriff’s Office Asks for Public’s Help in Search For Trucker Suspect

The first real clue to come in on all the missing person cases in the area. Help Klamath Falls Oregon Sheriff Office ID this trucker. He was the last to see this woman alive and could be the key to not only solving this woman’s disappearance but a number of the hundred other women missing in PNW. IF you have any information, please call (541) 883-5130

https://www.facebook.com/pg/Have-You-Seen-Me-Southern-Oregons-Missing-People-161249961222839/posts/

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