“Weed is really amazing for a ton of people, but really dangerous for some,” Kristen Mort says. Her 18-year old son was hospitalized earlier this year for a condition called “cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome” after she says he had writhing convulsions, excruciating abdominal pain and nonstop vomiting.
There were 21 reported car crashes on the morning of Dec. 8, mostly from drivers taking their morning commute along the Beltline or Delta Highways through Eugene. Early last February, a similar icy dawn on area roads caused 15 car crashes. As of Dec. 13, the National Weather Service predicts below-freezing temperatures for a span of several nights (Dec. 14 to 17), meaning drivers are again venturing out into black ice and Christmas lights.
The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) issued fines on Dec. 5 to food processing equipment manufacturer A & K Development Co. and to G & R Auto Wreckers, Inc. for Clean Water Act violations at Eugene facilities. DEQ fined A & K $6,427 for failure to monitor for copper and zinc at its facility at 410 Chambers Street, and fined G & R $10,106 for failure to monitor for pH at its Pick-A-Part facility at 90579 Highway 99 North.
• Brails on 5th has opened! After the venerable Keystone Café shut its doors in May 2015, Sang Joo (Joy) Knudtson of Brails Restaurant on Willamette stepped in. The new Brails is located at the former Keystone Café, 395 W. 5th Avenue, just on the edge of the Whiteaker.
After 21 years in business at its 2585 Willamette Street location, Tsunami Books is hoping it can hang on for another 20. But it’s going to take a bit of a Hail Mary, Tsunami proprietor Scott Landfield says.
People filled chairs, lined walls and sat on the floor for the duration of the special meeting of the city of Eugene Human Rights Commission (HRC) on Monday, Dec. 5. Professors, public school teachers, community members and activists were vocal in their concerns for undocumented people in their communities, classrooms and schools.
• Paul and Lisa Tostberg, owners of Corvallis’ Coffee Culture, have launched their roasting business as a standalone retail-wholesale brand in the greater Pacific Northwest, Holderness Coffee Roasters. The Tostberg’s have been in the industry since 1993, according to a press release, when they had a drive-thru coffee kiosk that also developed film. The Tostbergs say, “We had no way of knowing that coffee would be a successful enterprise, so we developed film as well!
• Oakridge area residents against the proposed Old Hazeldell gravel quarry at TV Butte on the edge of the town will hold a rally on Wayne Morse Free Speech Plaza, noon Tuesday, Dec 13, before packing into Harris Hall, where the Lane County Commissioners will be reading and discussing the proposal, rally organizers say. For the quarry proposal to move forward, the commissioners must decide to rezone the property from forestland to rock and gravel.
Back in September, Janie Coverdell traveled to Standing Rock from Eugene to protest the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL). Inspired by the activism she took part in there and by the lack of media attention at the time, she decided to return last month.
A new motion by the University of Oregon Senate may change the mandatory reporting policy on sexual assault to favor the wishes of the victims.
The current UO mandatory reporting policy requires all staff members to report sexual assaults they hear about from students, regardless of the actual desires of the victims themselves, according to Jennifer Freyd, a professor of psychology at UO and a nationally recognized activist on sexual assault issues.
New Growth LLC, 973-1951, plans to hire Rye Tree Service, 999-0295, to apply Rozol rodenticide containing chlorophacinone, strychnine and zinc phosphide on 183.8 acres east of Siltcoos Lake and a few miles north of Mapleton for mountain beaver (aka boomer) control. See ODF notification 2016-781-12861; call Quincy Coons at 997-8713 with questions.
• Steel Wool, Gumbo Groove and McKayla Webb ask you to bring warm (wool) clothing to donate to the White BirdClinic 6 pm Dec. 2 at their show at Whirled Pies Downtown, 8th and Charnelton. $8 door. For more info go to steelwoolband.com.
The presence of the homeless in downtown Eugene has long been a contentious issue. But the idea of sheltering the unhoused in the heart of the city instead of trying to drive them out has not received much attention.
The majority of shelter options are in other areas, particularly in Ward 7, home to the Whiteaker, Trainsong, River Road and Santa Clara neighborhoods.
When First Lady Michelle Obama issued her “Mayor’s Challenge to End Veteran Homelessness” in 2014, Eugene stepped up to the plate, setting a goal of getting 365 of Lane County’s military vets into homes — an average of one per day for a year — through a broad coalition of local government and nonprofit agencies working together to secure funding and real estate.
Eugene knocked it out of the park, exceeding its goal by housing 404 veterans in the span of a year. According to St. Vincent de Paul Executive Director Terry McDonald, who participated in the challenge, you can hold that number up to a much larger city like Portland (around 600 vets housed) to understand the success of the local effort.
The recent legal settlement between a tenure-track Pakistani-American Lane Community College instructor and the college adds a renewed focus on safety for minorities at LCC in this post-Trump world.
In the same month that racial and sexual harassment have seen a definite uptick on campuses around the U.S. after Trump was elected, sociology instructor Nadia Raza reached a legal settlement with LCC that contains provisions for college security to go through threat assessment training and other pro-safety measures by May 2017.
Springfield School District board member Erik Bishoff says he was “not surprised, but disappointed” that Measure 97 didn’t pass.
“We might have to make some cuts this year, and it’s likely going to mean class sizes are going to get larger,” Bishoff says.
Now that the measure has failed, members of the education community and supporters of the Measure 97 campaign are working on next steps to push for a fully funded school system, which includes plans to lobby the Oregon Legislature.
Oxbow Timber 1, 679-3311, plans to hire RRC Forestry Roseburg Resources, 541-679-3311, to aerially apply urea fertilizer to 708 acres south of Noti and Vaughn Road, near Warden and Hardy Creeks. See ODF notification 2016-781-12752; call Dan Menk at 541-935-2283 with questions.
• There will be a “good old-fashioned teach-in” on U.S. civics and fighting oppression 3 pm Friday, Nov. 25, at the Unitarian Universalist Church, 1685 W. 13th Avenue. Lane County Humans for Respect holds the event the day after Thanksgiving, partnering with the Adult Religious Education program at the church. Search for the event “Teach-in” on Facebook for more info.
After Jan. 20, Inauguration Day, the title “president” is going to appear before the name Donald Trump.
Beyond the dystopian strangeness of having a reality TV star in the nations’ highest office, in the wake of Trump’s startling Nov. 8 upset of Hillary Clinton in the presidential election, minorities, immigrants, LGBTQ people, environmentalists and more are fearful of what a Trump presidency could mean and are trying to envision a path forward.
A handful of local organizations have come together to help administer the flu vaccine to people experiencing homelessness.
Bruce Tufts, a registered nurse at White Bird Medical Clinic and a volunteer at Egan Warming Center, started a conversation with other volunteers last year about the role they could play in addition to basic medical care.
Native American leader Winona LaDuke says she drove 700 miles to vote this year.
Now in the wake of Donald Trump’s election, LaDuke — who is executive director of Honor the Earth, an organization whose mission it is to create awareness and support for Native environmental issues — says it’s time to “double down on work in the communities and continue our battles.”
The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) sent the Walmart Supercenters in Eugene and Newport warning letters for hazardous waste law violations on Sept. 29. Both facilities generate between 220 pounds and 2,200 pounds of hazardous waste per month, and the violations were discovered by DEQ during unannounced inspections.