• Eugene Weekly Loves You!
Share |

EW! A Blog.

November 6, 2014 03:13 PM

And you complained about Meghan Trainor's "All About that Bass" for its lack of feminism and because it made the skinny girls feel bad? Well how do you like it now that it's an anthem for Darth Vader and the Empire? 

November 5, 2014 05:39 PM

On the agenda for the Eugene 4J school board tonight is approving the implementation of full-day kindergarten, officially moving the 4J district towards a full-day transition in the 2015-2016 school year. 

Full-day kindergarten may help close the achievement gap in Oregon, according to an "item for action" memo on 4J's website:

Fifty percent (50%) of Oregon children are born into economically disadvantaged families and 40% of Oregon children have additional factors that put them at risk of academic failure and under-education. Approximately 40% of children enter kindergarten with development typical of three and four year olds. 
These children will have to make two years of academic growth for three consecutive years to meet reading standard by the end of 3rd grade, a key 
predictor of academic and life success. Nationally, only 15% of students who require remediation beyond 3rd grade ever reach proficiency. School districts spend, on average, $64,000 more per student over thirteen years of schooling for remediation that most often fails to achieve its objective. 
As Oregon school districts focus on closing the achievement gap between different socioeconomic and ethnic groups, a breadth of research documents that early childhood is a potent time to prevent achievement gaps from developing or becoming entrenched. Numerous studies indicate that full-day kindergarten can lead to improved academic achievement and may help close the achievement gap among disadvantaged children. By reducing the need for future remediation and/or retention, the investment in full-day kindergarten can also lower subsequent schooling costs.

The recommendations report says that an additional $218 million will be needed to implement full-day kindergarten around the state of Oregon. Costs vary from district to district, depending on the amount of extra staff needed and how much additional facilities space is required to accomodate for the switch.

The report says that according to a survey of Oregon school superintendents earlier this year, 20 percent of the 100 districts responding reported needing extra classroom space. 

As an example of estimated costs, the report lists potential expenditures related to full-day kindergarten implementation for the Springfield School District. The report says the district could need up to $5.8 million for facilities upgrades and around $2 million for additional teachers or assistants. 


However, how the state of Oregon will provide this money has concerned Lane County school districts, and it seems that funding for full-day kindergarten is still not firmed up, according to the 4J memo:

Budget implications are not yet clearly defined. The Governor’s budget recommendation will help to support full-day implementation. However, the legislature must first determine that it will approve the additional funds necessary to expand half-day programs to full-day programs. 

The full report can be found here.
November 3, 2014 12:32 PM

Angry Yoga: Be in the present because there is no future. It's Canadian, but this is so very Eugene.

November 3, 2014 05:20 PM

As of last week, Eugene staple McMenamins North Bank opened its renovated bar under a new name: the Kapu Hut. Don't fret — only the bar has changed, the rest of the pub (including outdoor seating) remains the same. 

A press release describes the new "South Seas" venture:

"Extensive redecorating has been put into the bar’s atmosphere evoking Polynesia elements of many wild and exotic locales. Bamboo walls surround the space and décor includes antique masks from Papua New Guinea, Japan and Africa. To accompany the new themed atmosphere, the Kapu Hut now carries over 60 rums and an entirely new cocktail menu ... From the classic Mai Tai to McMenamins Billy Whiskey, there’s bound to be something for everyone."

Above: Kapu Hut signature cocktail the Pesco Sour. Photos courtesy of McMenamins/Kathleen Nyberg

A lookover the extensive libations menu includes the obligatory drinks with silly names such as the "Suffering Bastard," made with Gables Gin, Longshot Brandy, Fever Tree Ginger Beer, Agostura bitters and lime, and the "Fremont Furnace," made with Aval Pota (Edgefield's apple whiskey), Herbal Liqueur No. 7 (also by Edgefield and described as "Distilled with a blend of Edgefield estate-grown garden herbs called the Black Rabbit Magic Potion #9, the spirit is bold with flavors of cinnamon, mint and caraway, balanced with the sweetness of organic birch syrup"), honey, hot apple cider, fresh-squeezed lemon, heavy whipping cream and cider. Damn

And by golly! Do they have a lot of rums, from Appleton 21 year to Myer's Dark.

October 31, 2014 05:51 PM

County commissioners Sid Leiken and Jay Bozievich have responded to an April 22 letter from the Oregon State Bar that cleared former county administrator Liane Inkster (Richardson) of complaints to that she engaged in fraudulent behavior that would reflect adversely on her ability to practice law.

Inkster nominated herself for a position on the Oregon State Bar’s Disciplinary Board in March, and a story by the R-G led to a bar investigation into what had led to her being fired by the county and if she made fraudulent statements or engaged in criminal conduct.

The commissioners said in a statement that today, Oct. 31, is the first they have seen of the letter from the bar. EW received the letter from the bar Oct. 30 after inquiring into the status of the bar’s investigation into Inkster and asked the county for comment. The bar letter says Inkster told the investigator, Assistant Disciplinary Counsel Mary Cooper, that Leiken and Bozeivich, who were the chair and vice chair of the County Commission at the time, knew and approved of the changes Inkster made to her take-home pay. Those changes led to the termination of her job with the county. 

The letter to Inkster from the bar also says that there was an "full independent audit" at the county that proved she did not act fraudulently. Leiken and Bozievich call that "curious" and say "No audit was done of Ms. Inkster's misdeeds."

At the time Inkster’s case was forwarded to the district attorney, they write, who investigated but did not file charges as she had already been terminated and agreed to pay the money back.

In the letter from the bar it says that Inkster told the investigator that her employment with Lane County ended over a “contractual dispute.”

Bozievich and Leiken write, “Had the bar looked closely at the situation it likely would have come to a conclusion consistent with the two previous investigations.”

In their response, the two commissioners say they will be asking the Oregon State Bar to reopen the investigation into Inkster, interview all parties involved — the letter from the bar indicates only Inkster was interviewed — and issue a revised letter of findings. The statement from the commissioners is below. You can read the letter to Richardson here.

October 31, 2014 12:47 PM

From the guy who brought you "Cow with Guns" comes a YMCA parody complete with a bad cop costume and catchy lyrics (I don't know how "Label GMOs" as a lyric can be catchy but it's stuck in my head.) I dunno if the grape costume means to parody Fruit of the Loom commercials from the 1980s, but it works for me.

The video was actually created for the 2013 GMO intiative in Washington that was defeated, but it works for Oregon now.

October 30, 2014 03:08 PM

Eugene's Pamela Wible, M.D., spoke twice at the American Academy of Family Physicians Scientific Assembly in Washington, D.C., recently. Find a transcript of her talk online at


October 30, 2014 04:58 PM

Lane County Board of Commission then-Chair Sid Leiken and Vice Chair Jay Bozievich knew of the changes in Liane Inkster’s compensation, according to a letter from the Oregon State Bar to Inkster (formerly Richardson).

According to the letter, after the conclusion of an investigation by Greg Olson of USO Consulting and Investigation, “the board later conducted a full independent audit” of Inkster. “It concluded that [Inkster] did not act fraudulently and that the board chair and vice chair knew and approved of the changes in [her] compensation.”

The entire April 22, 2014 letter concludes that Inkster did not knowingly make an “inaccurate representation of material fact that reflects adversely on the lawyer’s fitness to practice law.” EW received the letter after inquiring into the status of the bar’s disciplinary investigation into Inkster.

The Oregon State Bar opened an investigation into Inkster after she nominated herself for a position on the bar’s Disciplinary Board after “Inkster had been sacked by the Lane County Board of Commissioners for covertly boosting her pay in violation of county policy,” according to The Register-Guard.

But according to the letter from the state bar to Inkster, she and “the board agreed to terminate [Inkster's] employment contract based on contractual dispute. No one found that [Inkster] acted dishonestly, fraudulently or deceitfully.”

Inkster told Olson that commissioners Leiken, Bozievich and Faye Stewart had knowledge of her compensation changes. Leiken and Stewart denied that knowledge to the investigator, according to the report. Bozievich told the investigator he knew of one of her pay changes but denied knowing about the change that allowed Richardson to sell back and turn into immediate take-home pay much more  of her unused paid vacation and sick leave than county policy allows.

According to the letter, Inkster told the Assistant Disciplinary Counsel Mary Cooper that the issues began when the Lane County board “wanted, for political reasons, to delay discussions” over whether she should get a raise. At the time, Inkster was making more than $150,000 a year.

EW has asked the county to respond to whether Leiken and Bozievich knew of the changes and has asked for a copy of the county's independent audit into Richardson that found she didn’t act fraudulently.

The letter from the bar is below.

October 29, 2014 11:07 AM

An illustrated talk by Noah Strycker, local author of The Thing with Featherswill be from 6 to 7:30 this evening (Wednesday) at the Eugene Public Library.

Here’s the blurb about Strycker on the library website:

Approaching bird behavior from new and surprising angles, Strycker explores the astonishing homing abilities of pigeons, extraordinary memories of nutcrackers, self-image in magpies, life-long loves of albatrosses, particle physics of starling flocks, and other mysteries — revealing why birds do what they do, and how we can relate. With humor and wit, this talk draws deeply from cutting-edge science and anecdotes from the field.

A well-known and widely published writer and photographer, Noah Strycker is Associate Editor of “Birding” magazine and author of a previous book, “Among Penguins.” He has studied birds on six continents with field seasons in Panama, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Australia, Antarctica, the Galapagos Islands, and the Farallon Islands, and his “life list” is approaching 2,500 species. He also works as a naturalist guide on expedition cruises to Antarctica and Norway’s Svalbard archipelago.


October 28, 2014 12:30 AM

A bloody hell of a good time was had at the Second-Hand Zombies Salvaged Costume Show. Envision Journalism and Her Campus Oregon joined forces for the first Halloween Thrift Fashion Event held in the EMU Ballroom. Here are some of the runway looks supplied and styled by local shops Buffalo Exchange, Kitsch-22, and Custom Cranium.

October 27, 2014 06:26 PM

Fun new video from Steel Wool, filmed right here in little Eugene.

October 27, 2014 12:52 PM

Scientist Tyrone Hayes came to Eugene last week to talk about his research on the pesticide atrazine. If you missed his talks, KLCC will play his City Club of Eugene talk, "A Second Silent Spring" Oct. 27 at 6:30 pm, or you can listen to it here

Or you can just listed to Hayes' "The Atrazine Rap."