News

Danielle Tinker / Beyond Toxics

Governor Kate Brown has proclaimed this Saturday Oregon Native Bees Conservation Awareness Day.  There will be events in Eugene celebrating the pollinators.

Oregon Department of Forestry

The State of Oregon is now looking for a buyer willing to take the Elliott State Forest off its hands, following Thursday’s vote by the Land Board to move ahead with plans to sell the public forest located near Coos Bay.

The state of Oregon is under a constitutional obligation to manage the Elliott Forest to make money for public schools. But with declines in timber sales in recent years, the state has been losing money on the land.

Rachael McDonald

The Benton County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously Thursday to put a measure on the November ballot to fund a new jail.  

The 25 million dollar bond would fund a new 110-bed jail to replace the existing facility in downtown Corvallis.
Rick Osborne is spokesman for Benton County.

Osborne: "Our current jail has 40 beds in it. We have a population of 85-thousand. That's the smallest jail per-capita in the state of Oregon. It was a temporary structure built in the mid 1970s to last about 10 years until we had a regional jail system."

kval.com

Firefighters continue to battle a wildfire sparked Wednesday afternoon near Eugene. The Chambers Mill fire, about three miles south of Lorane, has worsened local air quality. Firefighters worked through the night, bulldozing a line around most of the perimeter. Cynthia Orlando is with the Oregon Department of Forestry, which is fighting the fire:

Lane Regional Air Protection Agency

Air quality in the south Willamette Valley declined earlier this week due to smoke from wildfires in southern Oregon and northern California. A new fire south of Eugene has further increased risks. Residents may need to prepare for a long stretch of hazy conditions.

gazettetimes.com

Benton County is working to implement mental health services for people who are incarcerated. The initiative also offers alternatives to jail time.

The Step Up initiative addresses mental health issues of people in jails and works with the courts, jail administrators and the families of inmates. Rick Osborn with Benton County says raising awareness is an important strategy to keep people out of jail.

Corinne Boyer

For a number of years, yoga classes have been offered in prisons. The Lincoln County Jail is now offering classes for its short stay inmates. When the jail psychologist was challenged with recent budget cuts, he started the volunteer run program addressing stress, anxiety and trauma. KLCC’s Corinne Boyer has this story from the jail.

Rachael McDonald

The family of a veteran who was shot and killed by Eugene Police during a mental health crisis is proposing legislation to change how law enforcement deals with similar situations.

Brian Babb was killed in March. When police arrived at his house he was on the phone with his therapist. She says she was talking him down from a panic attack.

Jon Rosman / OPB

Residents of Junction City will get to vote on whether to allow the sale of marijuana in their town. The Junction City Council Tuesday voted unanimously to put the issue to voters in November 2016.

Our Children's Trust

Young people in Eugene Wednesday filed a federal climate lawsuit against the U.S. Government and the President. KLCC's Rachael McDonald spoke with one plaintiff who is part of the lawsuit sponsored by the organization Our Children's Trust.

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