KWSO News for Tue., Jul. 14, 2020

Monday afternoon’s COVID-19 Update from the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs reports that the number of cases of coronavirus on the Warm Springs Reservation remains at 103.  80 of those people have recovered. 1368 tests have been done with 22 tests still pending.  The Warm Springs Health & Wellness Center has 301 ABBOTT (Rapid) test kits in stock.  The capacity for running the Rapid tests onsite at the Health & Wellness Center is about 22 per day.  There are 230 State test kits on hand with the State lab taking 24-48 hours for results.

The Oregon Health Authority reported early Monday that there were 280 new confirmed and presumptive cases of COVID-19 bringing the state total to 12,438. Oregon Gov. Kate Brown has announced two new statewide COVID-19 safety mandates  — a ban on indoor social gatherings of more than 10 people and a requirement that people wear face coverings outside if they cannot socially distance.

For anyone who has been diagnosed with Covid-19 – you must quarantine from others to protect from spreading the coronavirus.  If you have had close contact with Covid-19 you need to isolate yourself for 14 days.  If both these steps are not taken – Covid-19 will spread.  Remember, even if you do not have symptoms – you can still spread the coronavirus.

The Warm Springs Reservation has officially declared fire season. All regulations governing any timber industry or other outside activities will be enforced. As fire anger and risk rise, more strict regulations will be implemented. The current Industrial Fire Precaution Levels for Zones 1 and 2 are 1 with Moderate Fire Danger. Zone 3 is at an IFPL Level 0 with Low Fire Danger.

The Warm Springs Branch of Public Utilities provided an update on reservation water systems on Monday.

  • Two major repairs have been made to the mainlines at Kahneeta, however the Kahneeta system continues to be problematic due to the need for pressure relief valve repairs.
  • The main community will continue to operate at about 50% capacity until the issues at the Shitike Creek crossing mainline can be resolved. Currently, the crew is working with Buchanan & Associates and IHS to develop a solution. The ultimate goal is to provide a permanent fix with a new 16″ mainline that will be installed across the Shitike Creek bridge.  The timeline for a permanent fix is late this year or early next year.  Water conservation efforts should continue in Warm Springs and the boil water notice remains in effect.
  • The update on the Simnasho-Schoolie System says they are in the process of pricing, ordering and installing a booster pack to replace the antiquated booster station for the Schoolie water system. The Schoolie system remains a potential failure and requires constant monitoring to ensure the existing booster station is operable.  Folks on this system, particularly the Schoolie system, are encouraged to conserve water.  The boil water notice for that area was lifted on Sunday.
  • The Sidwalter water system is operational without any community notices. Public Utilities is working to get the electrical and pump upgrades to ensure normal operations for Sidwalter.
  • And, the Public Utilities is moving forward with bringing the LeClaire residents on to the agency water system as the well that serves those homes has failed.

Last week the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) and Oregon Criminal Justice Commission (CJC) announced awards totaling $9.7 million to six counties and five tribal governments. The funding will help people with mental illnesses and substance use disorders get the treatment they need, and avoid frequent and costly visits to Oregon emergency departments and involvement with the criminal justice system. Oregon has one of the highest rates of people with behavioral health needs in the United States. The funding will help address a shortage of supports and services in local communities, from supportive housing to crisis stabilization units to medication and care coordination. Counties awarded are Lane, Deschutes, Douglas, Union, Clackamas and Lincoln. Tribes awarded are the Klamath Tribes, the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians, the Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw, the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde and nearly $283,000 for the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs.