News Stories Fri., Dec. 29, 2017

Columbia River Treaty negotiations between the United States and Canada are set to begin in 2018, and advocates for the environment say the river’s health should be the focus of talks. Conversation, fishing and faith-based groups, as well as tribes in the Columbia River basin want the treaty to expand its purpose from simply maintaining hydropower production and flood-risk management. They say negotiators should modernize the treaty and include a third purpose: ecosystem function, which would help salmon and other species. Jim Heffernan, policy analyst for the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission, says he’s encouraged that the U-S’ top negotiator is following regional recommendations on the treaty. Tribes weren’t consulted when the treaty was first negotiated and their resources on the river have been hurt since, but they’re excited that the ecosystem could become a focus. Heffernan says this term has a deep meaning for tribes. The Treaty was originally ratified in 1964 to reduce the flood risk in Portland and create more hydropower capacity. Salmon returns continue to drop in the river basin.

Here are the results from yesterday’s games at the All-Indian Men’s Holiday Basketball Tournament yesterday. Money from Warm Springs defeated Burns 78-43. Warm Springs beat NW Hoopers 89-84. United Tribes defeated Medicine Society 95-58. Portland topped NOW Nevada 101-71. And, Swan Town got the win over Tygh Valley 85-49. This afternoon’s matchups are the NW Hoopers vs. Medicine Society at 1:30 and at 3:00 NOW Nevada faces Tygh Valley. The winners of those two contests will place for 4th place tomorrow. Semifinal games are tonight. At 7:00 Warm Springs takes on United Tribes, and the prime time game is Portland vs. Swantown.

The Madras basketball teams are competing at the Les Scwab Oregon Holiday Hoopfest hosted by Summit High School. Summit ran over Madras in the varsity boys game last night, breaking school scoring and assist records and defeating the White Buffs 102-56. Tyler Lockey had 16 points, Byron Patt added 12 points, and Kahne Herkshan scored 10.

The girls were defeated by Bend in a game played at Bend High 52-44. High scorers from Madras were Jalaney Suppah and Jiana Smith-Francis who had 10 apiece.

A statewide Special Election for Oregon will be done on January 23rd. We will vote on Measure 101, the Healthcare Insurance Premiums Tax for Medicaid Referendum. A yes vote supports upholding certain assessments/taxes on healthcare and healthcare insurance to provide funding for Medicaid expansion by approving five sections of HB 2391. A no vote opposes those assessments/taxes by rejecting the five sections. Registered Oregon Voters can expect ballots in their mailboxes between Jan. 3-9. Ballots are due by 8pm on January 23rd. The deadline to register to vote or update voter registration is January 2nd.