News Stories for Tue., Jul. 18, 2017

The Tribal Administration Building closed early yesterday due to extreme high temperatures in the building. It will open at its regular time today. All departments will be open.

The Warm Springs test range for unmanned aircraft systems, or drone technology, expanded in June to include the Prineville Airport, in addition to the Madras Airport, the Warm Springs facility manager told the Bend Bulletin. Liz Stalford told the paper “Some larger drones need an airport.” The Warm Springs test range, established in 2013, is one of three in Oregon, the other two are at Pendleton and Tillamook. All three are part of the Pan-Pacific UAS Test Range Complex managed by the University of Alaska, Fairbanks. Madras Airport is closest to the Warm Springs Indian Reservation, but Prineville is close to Bend and Redmond, where the people working with unmanned aircraft technology may want to live, Stalford said. Madras Airport is planning to erect more hangars to accommodate unmanned aircraft, said Janet Brown, the Jefferson County manager for Economic Development for Central Oregon told the Bulletin.

The Best of the 2017 Portland 48 Hour Film Project was held at the Hollywood Theater in Portland last night.  Short silent film Red Fawn “Missing Indigenous” produced and directed by Isaac Trimble and Laronn Katchia won best film and best cinematography. In March 2018, the film will be shown at an event in Los Angeles.

The Jefferson County School board meeting last night was a full house. A recent decision by the board to cancel Madras High School’s Junior Reserve Officers Training program was addressed by a few dozen parents, students and community members who spoke for nearly two hours, asking the board to reconsider the decision, KTVZ reports. The board didn’t make any decisions, but added another discussion of the program to the agenda of the next board meeting on Monday, July 31.

The Oregon Health Authority has updated the health advisory issued June 30 for Lake Billy Chinook.  The update lifts the advisory on those areas of the Deschutes and Crooked River of Lake Billy Chinook arms affected by the advisory, and confines the advisory on the Metolius Arm to Perry South Cove. Water monitoring has confirmed that the level of blue-green algae toxins are below guideline values for human exposure. However, OHA recommends that people remain cautious when using the lake, particularly with pets because toxins are still well above the very low exposure levels established for dogs. Oregon health officials advise recreational visitors to always be alert to signs of algae blooms in all Oregon waters, because only a fraction of the many lakes and waterways in Oregon are sampled for blue-green algae by state, federal and local agencies. People and their pets should avoid areas where the water is foamy, scummy, thick like paint, pea-green, blue-green or brownish red in color, if a thick mat of blue-green algae is visible in the water, or bright green cells are suspended in the water column.