KWSO News for 3/5/20

The Integration Resource Management Plan (IRMP)meeting over the 2022 revision plan held a meeting last night at the Simnasho Longhouse. They will hold a 2nd meeting today at the Greeley Heights Community Building from noon to 2pm. Austin Smith Jr & Michael Leecy are the team leaders of the IRMP process. “Public Outreach, we’re hoping to get a broad spectrum of comments from the membership and the first set of meetings is basically just trying to see where we’re at with the community and from there we can kind of dovetail off and see what kind of more outreach we need to do. Cuz we’d like to get like I  said broad spectrum of comments from not only more outspoken but from also people can write comments. Austin put together a really nice survey and we worked on it as a team, finalized the questions and that’s going to be coming out to. That’s going to be another way to gathering the memberships input. Really what we’re looking for is the public’s input, and if they don’t understand IRMP there’s questions in there that relate to individual resources and it kinda lays it out for the public and put it in terms of what are their concerns in terms of Natural Resources” Again, the 2nd meeting is being held today at the Greeley Heights Community Building from noon to 2pm.

Upon learning Monday morning that a Wildhorse employee had become ill and tested presumptive positive for COVID-19, the Board of Trustees of the Confederated Tribes of Umatilla Indian Reservation made the decision to immediately close the main building at the resort in order to take cautionary measures to safeguard the health of employees and guests. After just 48 hours, Wildhorse Resort & Casino reopened for business yesterday at noon following inspection and backed by a letter of certification from environmental health officials and regulatory inspectors. OPB’s Meerah Powell reports, some federal actions are being taken to help control the virus at the local level. “The U.S. House and Senate have reached a bipartisan agreement on a more than $8 billion dollar emergency funding package to help fight the spread of the COVID-19 virus. That funding will go towards measures like vaccine development. Oregon Governor Kate Brown also announced that the guidelines for testing criteria for the coronavirus will become more flexible. [12 secs] “Today we are receiving word that the CDC will be issuing new guidance for testing. Oregon public health officials are working to determine how to best implement this guidance right now.” Currently the only people who are being tested are those who show symptoms after traveling or coming into contact with someone who has traveled or if they have been hospitalized due to a serious respiratory illness with no explanation. This is Meerah Powell reporting.”

Thousands of gallons of gasoline have seeped out of an underground storage tank into a creek in Douglas County. JPR’s April Ehrlich reports that the leak was discovered last week (Tuesday, Feb. 25). About three-thousand gallons of gas seeped out of a tank buried beneath a 76 gas station in Canyonville, leaving a sheen along a tributary of the South Umpqua River. Cleanup crews are using a floating boom to absorb the fuel. Oregon Department of Environmental Quality officials say initial water samples near the spill site showed low levels of petroleum. The nearest drinking water intake is 10 miles downstream. Air monitors at nearby homes and businesses show no sign of odors. Meanwhile, cleanup crews are removing the faulty tank, as well as the contaminated soil and groundwater.”

Ecola means “whale” in the Chinook Wawa trade language — and, much like a whale, sections of Ecola State Park are heading out to sea. The Astorian reports the park remains closed indefinitely after a February landslide that damaged the primary entrance road and sent a portion of a trail, trees and salal bushes cascading over a cliff edge. With the closure, the state expects increased tourism and recreational pressure on other state parks, especially parks like Oswald West farther south. Ecola sees more than half a million day-use visitors every year. And state park sites on the North Coast in general have only been growing in popularity in recent years.

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