News Stories Tue., Feb. 20, 2018

AP-A year of upheaval at the U.S. Interior Department has seen dozens of senior staff members reassigned and key leadership positions left unfilled, rules considered burdensome to industry shelved, and a sweeping reorganization proposed for its 70,000 employees. The evolving status quo at the agency responsible for more than 780,000 square miles (2 million square kilometers) of public lands, mostly in the American West, has led to praise from energy and mining companies and Republicans, who welcomed the departure from perceived heavy-handed regulation under President Barack Obama. But the changes have drawn increasingly sharp criticism from conservationists, Democrats and some agency employees. Under President Donald Trump, the critics say, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has curbed outside input into how the land is used and elevated corporate interests above the duty to safeguard treasured sites. The differing views illustrate longstanding tensions over the role of America’s public lands.

A year after losing by half a point to end its four-year run as the Class 4A wrestling state champ, Crook County returned with two state champions and four runners-up to record a first place at Veterans Memorial Coliseum on Saturday, defeating second-place Marshfield, and third-place Sweet Home, the defending state champ.

Harrison Manu nearly became the fifth-ever Madras state champ but settled for second at 195 in the 4A championship.

In the 2A/1A meet, Culver won its 11th state title in 12 years — one point back of the 2A/1A record it set last year — while Central Linn finished second with 104 points.

Tonight is the last night of regular season basketball for the White Buffalos. The girls take their perfect Tri Valley record to Prineville to face Crook County. The Boys will host the Cowboys, who both have 7-2 Tri-Valley records –Madras has an 11-11 overall record, while Crook County is at 10-12. Tonight is also senior night for the boys – there are four – Lewis Fine, Chad Thurby, Tyler Lockey and Kanim Smith III.