KWSO News Dec. 11, 2018

Cascades East Transit has made changes to Route 20, which is the Warm Springs-Madras Route. The “Vocational Rehabilitation Office” stop in the Industrial Park has been removed because the program has relocated. And, there are now new northbound and southbound stops at the Plateau Travel Plaza along Highway 26.

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — The Trump administration wants to reclassify some radioactive waste left from the production of nuclear weapons to lower its threat level and make disposal cheaper and easier. The proposal by the U.S. Department of Energy would lower the status of some high-level radioactive waste in several places around the nation, including the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in Washington state — the most contaminated nuclear site in the country. Reclassifying the material to low-level could save the agency billions of dollars and decades of work by essentially leaving the material in the ground, critics say. The proposal joins a long list of Trump administration efforts to loosen environmental protections. Just last week, the Environmental Protection Agency acted to ease rules on the sagging U.S. coal industry.

The state has upheld the right of the Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde to build a scaffold at Willamette Falls to catch 15 salmon. The Grand Ronde has claimed cultural right to do so. Three northwest tribes though, have cast suspicion on the intentions. The Warm Springs, Umatilla and Yakama tribes filed formal objections to the scaffold, saying Grand Ronde should have consulted with the other tribes and that the Oregon Department of State Lands was hasty in its decision to allow the scaffold without that consultation. Portland General Electric, which owns the land around the proposed scaffold, also filed an objection after at first cooperating with Grand Ronde officials. The company said it reversed course after the other tribes brought up concerns. John Ogan, attorney for Warm Springs, told the Oregonian that the tribe plans to appeal the decision.  They are filing formal documents that request a hearing with an administrative law judge. From there, they could continue to appeal to the Oregon Court of Appeals if they lose. The other two tribes are also likely to appeal.