News

Recorded on: July 24th, 2015

Air Date: July  27th, 2015 

Social justice activists, community leaders, educators, professionals, and students gather in Philadelphia July 11-15 for the 106th annual convention of the NAACP. At the City Club meeting on July 24, Eric Richardson (president, Eugene-Springfield NAACP) will share his experience at the convention. Members of the faith and social justice communities will join him to explore the conversations that must take place as we work together for social justice.

City of Newport

The City of Newport is examining two urban renewal plans. One is located near U.S. Highway 20 and 101 near Agate Beach. The other is by the Port of Newport in the McClain Point area. Part of the plan includes providing resources to business owners and residences affected by any changes. Community Development Director Derrick Tokos says community feedback so far has been centered on the City's role in economic development.

Desmond O'Boyle

Union representatives, business owners, and volunteers took part in a statewide effort to raise Oregon's minimum wage Saturday.

The "Raise the Wage" Coalition is proposing increasing the minimum wage to $13.50 an hour, a boost from the current $9.25.

Jes Burns

Eugene's minor league baseball team, the Emeralds, will be paying homage to Civic Stadium tonight (Friday) at their new home, PK Park near Autzen Stadium. Civic Stadium was the longtime ballpark of the Emeralds prior to their relocation. The historic venue burned down last month, four minors have been charged for starting the fire.

Friends of Trees

Tree advocates are urging Oregonians to water their trees during this dry summer. Most of the state is in drought, which stresses even well-established trees.

Eric Burke, with Friends of Trees, spoke with me on his cell phone from where he and volunteers were weeding and mulching trees near Beltline Road in Eugene. He explains what trees need during an especially dry summer.

Oregon Delays Stream Buffer Decision

Jul 24, 2015
Earthfix / OPB

The Oregon Forestry Board Thursday delayed a decision on logging restrictions to keep water cool for endangered salmon.

At issue is how many trees should be left standing to provide shade along fish-bearing streams. Cold water is essential for many Northwest fish.

Ashley Ahearn / Earthfix

River levels around the Northwest are dropping as the drought continues - and the water’s getting warmer.
That’s a problem for salmon. Wildlife managers in Washington and Oregon have limited fishing to certain times of day and closed some rivers altogether. But some say that’s not enough to help struggling fish.

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill today that could repeal efforts to label food containing genetically modified organisms, or GMOs.

A couple of states have passed laws requiring labels on food containing GMOs. In Oregon, Jackson and Josephine counties have GMO crop bans in place. A group in Lane County is collecting signatures for a ballot measure against GMOs. But these local efforts could be undone by a bill making its way through Congress. The legislation would prevent states from passing laws mandating labels on foods containing GMOs.

Oregon.gov

Oregon’s unemployment rate of 5.5 for June is slightly higher than the national average. That’s according to numbers released by the state’s employment department. The jobless rate increased in Lane and Douglas counties as well.

The increase in unemployment in both counties is due to growth in the labor force. Regional economist Brian Rooney says when college students graduate in June, they’re added to the labor force. They’re also added to the unemployment rate.

Lindsay Eyink

UPDATED Thursday 11:47am

Voters in Jackson and Josephine Counties last year approved county-wide bans on the cultivation of genetically-modified crops. Backers of those measures fear a bill that passed the U.S. House of Representatives today would roll back those bans – as well as scores of other GMO-related measures across the country.

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