Rachael McDonald

Morning Edition Host / Reporter

Rachael McDonald started her career at KLCC as a volunteer in the newsroom in 2000.  Rachael was hired by the Northwest News Network to establish their Richland bureau in 2004. She reported on the progress of cleanup at Hanford Nuclear Reservation, chemical weapons destruction at the Umatilla Chemical Depot, agriculture and wine. Rachael returned to KLCC in 2007 to be the host of Morning Edition. She also reports on Lane County, forest issues and a variety of other local and regional stories. Rachael has a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Oregon. Rachael has won numerous awards for her reporting including first place from PRNDI for her story "Garden Brings Community Together" and for her interview with Naseem Rhaka, author of "The Crying Tree".  Rachael enjoys reading, hiking, biking and cooking.

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Environment
2:19 pm
Tue February 4, 2014

Oregon Chub Could be Taken Off Endangered Species List

The Oregon chub is a tiny minnow found only in the Willamette Basin.
Credit Rachael McDonald

A small minnow native to Oregon's Willamette Valley could be removed from the Federal Endangered Species List. The Oregon chub is the first fish to be de-listed because its population has been restored. The announcement came Tuesday near Eugene.

The Oregon Chub was listed as endangered 20 years ago. At that time there were only about 1000 of the tiny fish in the Willamette Basin. Three years ago it was moved to threatened status. Now, biologists say there are more than 100 thousand Oregon chub.

Bangs: "Bouncing around in my hand. But that's a little Oregon chub."

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KLCC program
9:03 am
Tue February 4, 2014

Trans Pacific Partnership Forum

This Tuesday, February 4th  at 6:30 pm KLCC will be airing a special forum on the Trans Pacific Partnership.  Representative Peter DeFazio organized the public forum to air his concerns over the Fast Track trade agreement now being negotiated. The forum was recorded on January 22nd.Alternative Radio will take the night off.

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Weather
11:51 am
Mon February 3, 2014

Frigid Weather This Week In Northwest

Freezing rain on a tree branch.
Credit Wikipedia

The northwest is in for another arctic blast this week. Snow is likely this weekend in the lower elevations, including the south Willamette Valley.

Andy Bryant is with the National Weather Service in Portland. He says it will be very cold this week in Oregon. In the Willamette Valley daytime highs will be in the low to mid 30s Wednesday and Thursday. He says overnight lows will be in the teens.

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Civic Stadium
6:00 am
Sun February 2, 2014

Decision Looms For Eugene's Civic Stadium

Credit Jes Burns

This month, the Eugene 4J School Board is expected to make its decision about the fate of Civic Stadium.

4J Superintendent Sheldon Berman is expected to announce his recommendation at 4 p.m. Monday. Proposals from Fred Meyer, Eugene YMCA and The City of Eugene to purchase the property are each being considered. Eugene School district spokeswoman Kerry Delf says the School Board makes the ultimate decision February 19th.

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Homeless Issues
1:56 pm
Wed January 29, 2014

30-Day Deadline For Whoville

The Whoville camp has been at West Broadway and Hilyard in Eugene since September.
Credit Rachael McDonald

Whoville residents have a month before the City of Eugene will shut it down. Meanwhile the City Manager is tasked with finding somewhere else for the 30 to 40 homeless people to go. The City Council voted 6 to 2 Wednesday to set the deadline.

Counselor Claire Syrett made the proposal. The City Manager recently announced the Whoville camp at West Broadway and Hilyard would have to close. Police put up no trespassing signs, then a fence with openings around the lot. Syrett says the council heard from community members asking for the camp to stay.

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Bethel School District
12:23 pm
Wed January 29, 2014

Bethel Adds Back School Days

Bethel is adding back 2 days because of the snow days in December. It's restoring 3 other days because of a better budget outlook.
Credit Bethel School District

Students at Eugene's Bethel School District will get five days back in their academic calendar this spring.

That's a combination of make up days for last month's snowstorm and a better budget outlook. The district is adding the 5 days back the week following spring break. That week in April had been scheduled as Budget Reduction Days. Bethel Superintendent Colt Gill says the district surveyed students, parents and staff.

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Homeless Issues
9:10 am
Wed January 29, 2014

OPB And KLCC Focus On Eugene's Homeless Issues on Think Out Loud

KLCC and OPB will collaborate on a Think Out Loud program focusing on homelessness in Eugene. Listen at noon Thursday on KLCC for a discussion of what works and what's possible as we address the crisis of homelessness.

State of the Union
7:46 am
Wed January 29, 2014

DeFazio Responds To President's State of The Union

Credit http://defazio.house.gov/

4th District Congressman Peter DeFazio praised President Obama for his focus on the need for jobs in his state of the union address. The Springfield Democrat agrees these jobs can come from investments in transportation infrastructure. And, DeFazio says Oregonians who are unemployed need their extended benefits.

Peter DeFazio: "I agree that it’s time for Congress to renew unemployment insurance for Oregonians and Americans who want to work but can't find a job. There are 5 unemployed Oregonians chasing every job in our state."

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Employment
11:46 am
Tue January 28, 2014

Unemployment Rate Drops Slightly in Lane And Douglas Counties

Lane and Douglas County saw some improvement in their jobless rates last month.  In Lane unemployment dropped to 6.9 percent while Douglas County dropped to 10 percent.

Brian Rooney is a regional Labor Economist with the State Employment Department. He says December saw modest job growth, mainly in the service industry.

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Homeless Issues
9:00 am
Tue January 28, 2014

Eugene Considers Expanding Homeless Rest-Stops, Restricting Fireworks

Eugene Police have put up a fence around Whoville with openings to enter and exit.
Credit Desmond O'Boyle

Eugene City Councilors Monday proposed extending the sunset date on the rest-stop ordinance until October 31, 2014. This will require a public hearing.

Councilor Claire Syrett says she'd like the city to add a third rest-stop for homeless people at 8th and Mill or another location near downtown. Residents of Whoville, a homeless camp at West Broadway and Hilyard in Eugene have been told they'll have to leave that site. Last Friday, police erected a fence with openings around the lot. Michael Adams was among those who testified to council.

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