Benton County’s Board of Commissioners voted this week to set up a reserve account to repay funds owed to Hewlett-Packard. The county will pay the company over one million dollars in interest from an earlier tax dispute.

A group called "Citizens for Protecting Corvallis" wants to see regulations on where homeless shelters can open and how they operate. A petition committee has begun collecting signatures to get an initiative on the ballot.

Supporters of the petition say shelters for the homeless should not be located in the downtown core of Corvallis. They also want to see sobriety requirements to limit what they call "damp" shelters. Paul Cauthorn is a chief petitioner who lives a couple blocks from the "Men's Winter Shelter" on 4th Street.

September’s National Preparedness Month has sparked renewed interest in earthquakes and other natural disasters in Oregon. Corvallis will host a readiness forum tonight (Thursday).

The battle to prohibit the cultivation of genetically modified organisms, or GMOs, continues in Oregon. In the upcoming special election, Benton County voters will decide if a measure to ban GMO's is right for them. KLCC’s Tiffany Eckert spoke with people on both sides of the issue and filed this report.

On the face of it, Measure 2-89 seeks to protect local food sources by banning the cultivation of genetically modified crops anywhere in the county. The measure also promotes saving heritage seeds and a sort of “We the People” right to self-governance.

Benton County is looking to connect its two largest cities, Corvallis and Albany, with a pedestrian bike path. The County has been approved to receive $2 million dollars from a state grant for the project.

Benton County is still in the planning stages to connect Independence Road in Albany to an already completed section in Corvallis. Commissioners are in the process of reviewing a conditional use permit application for the path. Benton County Spokesman Rick Osborn says in addition to linking the two cities, the pathway would create a safety corridor.

Corvallis Gazette-Times

The Yellow Point Fire, which broke out Friday afternoon, is roughly 220 acres. It's located about 25 miles west of Cottage Grove. No homes or structures are threatened and the cause of the fire is under investigation.

The blaze is burning in timber and logging slash in a remote area near the historic 1966 Oxbow Fire. Due to excessive traffic, smoky conditions and narrow roads, the public is encouraged to stay clear of the area. A late-night wildfire that tore through brush near Corvallis was extinguished Saturday morning after it forced the evacuation of more than 200 homes.

@FOX12Oregon via twitter

10:25 AM UPDATE:

Firefighters have the fire 70% contained at 3:00 a.m., and the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) used a bulldozer to fully contain the fire by 5:00 a.m.

Vocalist Earl Thomas debuts music recorded the previous night, merging the blues with Broadway styles. He also reflects with Eric Alan about the role of blues in overcoming oppression, and moving the musical form into the 21st century. Earl Thomas brings The Blues Cabaret to the Majestic Theatre in Corvallis on Friday evening. 

Corvallis Gazette-Times

Benton County is unsure how to manage an 18 mile railroad corridor it purchased late last year. The County is seeking public comment on the best use of land that extends from Monroe to just south of Corvallis.

Oregon State Police

A Benton County Sheriff's Office deputy found a vehicle Thursday morning down an embankment off Highway 34 belonging to an elderly Waldport man reported missing the day before to Lincoln County Sheriff's Office. The man was rescued from his vehicle northeast of Alsea and taken to a Corvallis hospital with non-life threatening injuries. Oregon State Police is investigating the crash and the man's family was notified that he was found safe.