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Dolly Parton is a national treasure. 

The country singer released her first album 50 years ago. Since then, Parton has starred in movies and been nominated for two Academy Awards, both nominations in the Best Original Song category — one for the hit “9 to 5.” 

Her accolades don’t stop there. Parton has also earned Emmy and Tony nominations; she’s a National Medal of the Arts recipient and one of the most successful country singers of all time. 

President Donald Trump’s tax plan is not unlike his tweets: short, lacking depth and full of bravado. Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden doesn’t mince words when he talks about the proposal. He calls it a scam and a “middle-class con job.” 

The senator has been speaking out against the Trump tax overhaul at town halls on a recent swing through Oregon. 

•  As we go to press, Lane County workers with AFSCME, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees planned to strike beginning Wednesday, Oct. 18. Dave Ivan Piccioni, ESSN board and Health Care for All-Oregon member tells EW picket lines start at 7:30 am across from the Wayne Morse Plaza. He says, “The number of local county workers is about 700. Seven out of 10 workers are women who disproportionally get less money than men.

On a typically gray late-summer day in Eugene, Marissa Zarate, executive director of Huerto de la Familia (“The Family Garden”), took Eugene Weekly on a tour of the organization’s garden wedged between Churchill High School and Kennedy Middle School.

The garden, which provides plots and materials free of charge for 40 families, is bursting with tomatillos, chiles and corn, all ready for harvest.

On Sunday, Oct. 1, a few dozen women, men and children assembled at the Wayne Morse Free Speech Plaza for a vigil honoring victims and survivors of intimate partner violence (IPV). Hosted by Womenspace, a Eugene nonprofit that helps victims of domestic violence, the vigil was the beginning of several events that will be held throughout October to bring attention to Domestic Violence Awareness Month. 

After years of debate, protests and nationwide conversations, the University of Oregon has implemented a new policy for reporting gender or sexual discrimination and violence against students.

According to the new policy, the changes are intended to encourage conversations and reporting by students, and make all employees part of the solution to prohibited conduct — such as gender discrimination, sexual harassment and sexual violence — by giving employees different responsibilities when supporting students who come forward. 

Mason Bruce & Girard, 541-973-1951, plans to hire Rye Tree Service Inc., 541-999-0295, to place Rozol pellets to kill mountain beavers during tree planting operations near tributaries of the Siuslaw River and east of Siltcoos Lake. See ODF notifications 2017-781-12255 and 2017-781-12257; call stewardship forester Quincy Coons at 541-935-2283 with questions.

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) fined Jorge Murillo (doing business as Armur Electrostatic Powder Coatings & Sandblasting) $9,755 on Oct. 3 for illegally accumulating and storing approximately 1,056 tons of spent sandblast material at 6191 Royal Avenue in Eugene. DEQ also cited Murillo for “placing wastes in a location where they are likely to be carried to Amazon Creek and for failing to properly label used oil containers.” DEQ has given Murillo thirty days to take various actions to address the situation.

AeroSynth Electronic Wind Instruments is a new high-tech startup based in Eugene. Company founder and inventor of the AeroSynth instrument is Brad Stewart, who has 40 years experience in embedded electronic systems, product design and engineering. Stewart says his next-generation electronic wind instrument (EWI) is played much like a saxophone, clarinet or recorder, and goes far beyond earlier EWIs that were awkward, bulky and expensive. Several working prototypes of the AeroSynth have been made but mass production and marketing are still in the future.

• The city of Eugene is hosting a series of community forums in October “to discuss what type of police chief the city should seek.” In addition to the forums that have already run, the upcoming forums are: Oct. 12 North Eugene High School; Oct. 17 Churchill High School; Oct. 18 Sheldon Community Center; Oct. 19 Gilham Community Church; Oct. 24 South Eugene High School; and Oct. 26 Ford Alumni Center, University of Oregon. All forums begin at 6 pm with pizza provided for attendees.

More than 80 people stood at the intersection of Oregon Avenue and the I-5 exit in Creswell on Monday, Oct. 2, calling on drivers to “Say no to One Gro.” The protesters were referencing an upcoming ballot initiative in the small town — one that has “the friendly city” divided about its future.

Community Rights Lane County and the Freedom From Aerial Herbicide Alliance handed over about 15,000 signatures calling for the ban of aerial herbicide spraying by timber corporations to the Lane County Clerk’s Office on Friday, Sept. 29.

A Springfield-based group is pushing back against the Trump administration’s review of national monuments. Friends of the Douglas-fir National Monument is working to propose a new national monument in Oregon. The proposal comes on the heels of Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke submitting a list of 27 national monuments designated since 1996 to be reviewed. 

Lane County plans to begin spraying roadsides near guardrails. If you live along a Lane County maintained road and have questions, especially if you do not know if your Lane County No Spray Area registration is active, contact Pamela Reber at 541-682-8521 or pamela.reber@co.lane.or.us.

• On Saturday, Oct. 14, you can attend a four hour intensive training from the Civil Liberties Defense Center. The training will impart knowledge and skills that will increase the security of individuals and political activist groups — a must for everyone fighting for a better world in these times, CLDC says. Learn about asserting your rights, how to combat state repression of your movement, as well as digital security for activists and best practices for private communications. There will also be a section on legal observing and copwatching. The training is 1-5 pm Saturday, Oct.

The University of Oregon athletic department, like many athletic departments in the country, has a “courtesy car” program, in which it provides its employees free cars to drive for personal use. The program, in theory, should be free to the department, because the cars are provided by local auto dealerships as gift-in-kind, and the employees using them pay for the insurance. 

“You wouldn’t layoff a teacher and make them reapply every year,” says Emily Miller, an expanded practice dental hygienist for Lane County Public Health.

Miller provides dental screenings throughout the county for infants, preschoolers and elementary students as an employee of Lane County. Because she has a license beyond a normal dental hygiene degree, she practices without the supervision of a dentist. But as a part-time employee, contracted to work 1,040 hours a year, she must reapply each year for the same job she has held for the past decade.

There are 418 tech companies registered in Lane County, and many of them are hiring, according to Allison Weatherly, the event coordinator for Technology Association of Oregon (TAO). She says most of these tech companies are looking to shop local when they’re hiring, so several programs are setting up Lane County high school students to train for these jobs.

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) sent Quarren Avakian a warning letter Sept. 7 for failing to install certified vapor recovery equipment at Halsey Shell (west of I-5 at exit 216). Lack of vapor recovery equipment results in the escape of volatile organic compounds to the atmosphere, which in turn causes smog.

• The group City Accountability says it has less than two weeks to complete signature gathering to put a Charter Amendment on the ballot amending Eugene’s Charter to establish an office of an independent elected city auditor. To sign the petition, look for their volunteers in turquoise T-shirts at Sundance, Kiva, the downtown library, the Saturday Market and also at LCC center building Oct 3-6. For more info: cityaccountability.org


Driving up 30th, you may have noticed a massive gash in the forest next to Lane Community College. The clearcut adjacent to LCC may soon be home to McMansions, thanks to a few well-known land profiteers who operate in the area: the McDougal brothers. But LandWatch Lane County has filed an appeal to fight the planned development there.

Lane County has announced plans for a housing complex for the homeless adjacent to the Lane County Behavioral Health building near Autzen Stadium. The plans follow a “housing first” model, and while Lane County has done housing first on a small scale, according to the county’s human services manager Steve Manela, the new 50-unit complex would be the largest effort yet. 

Despite the sunny weather on a Thursday morning, Scobert Gardens Park on 4th and Van Buren is mostly empty. On one of the first smoke-free days from the wildfires burning across Oregon, there is more garbage in the park than anything else.

Impact Your Health Eugene, a free community health care event, returns to the Lane Events Center, 9 am to 5 pm, Sept. 24 and 25. Organizers say the event is “intended to serve those who need and could never hope to pay” for health care necessities including free diabetes screenings, consultations with medical doctors and eye doctors, and free dental exams, cleanings, fillings and extractions. There will also be representatives from local drug and alcohol recovery support groups. Volunteer medical professionals from any field are still needed; equipment will be provided.