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Rogue Valley News, Tuesday, 11/10 – Governor Brown Puts 9 Counties on a Covid-19 Pause

The latest news stories and stories of interest in the Rogue Valley from the digital home of Southern Oregon, from Wynne Broadcasting and RogueValleyMagazine.com

Today’s Headlines

COVID-19 has claimed four more lives in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll to 734. Oregon Health Authority reported 723 new confirmed and presumptive cases of COVID-19 as of yesterday, bringing the state total to 51,155.

The new cases are in the following counties: Baker (1), Benton (8), Clackamas (68), Clatsop (2), Columbia (4), Coos (6), Crook (2), Deschutes (25), Douglas (21), Grant (4), Jackson (54), Jefferson (5), Josephine (18), Klamath (23), Lane (36), Linn (17), Malheur (7), Marion (79), Morrow (1), Multnomah (204), Polk (16), Tillamook (2), Umatilla (11), Union (13), Wasco (1), Washington (119) and Yamhill (18).

Gov. Kate Brown has ordered a two-week pause with new limits on social gatherings, indoor dining and visits to long-term-care facilities as new coronavirus infections surge in Oregon. Brown has insisted a Covid Pause in nine counties, listed below, as well.

Social gatherings are limited to six people, or immediate members of a household, and their frequency should be limited. Brown and other officials said people also should cancel large in-person gatherings for Thanksgiving or TV-watching parties for football games.

“They continue to be the main culprit of community spread in Oregon,” Brown said at a virtual briefing for reporters Friday. “The data prove that not all Oregonians are listening.”

Restaurant indoor dining is limited to 50 people, including staff, and indoor recreational activities are limited to 50 people per venue. Restaurant dining groups are limited to six people each. The restriction does not apply to religious gatherings “at this time.”

Indoor visits to long-term-care facilities are suspended.

“This is a wake-up call,” Brown said. “We do not want to take further action to stop the spread of COVID-19, because I know it will have a devastating impact on our businesses both large and small. But I will, to protect the health and safety of Oregonians.”

The two-week pause measures include:

  • Urging all businesses to mandate work from home to the greatest extent possible.
  • Pausing long-term care facility visits that take place indoors to protect staff and residents.
  • Reducing maximum restaurant capacity to 50 people (including customers and staff) for indoor dining, with a maximum party size of six. Continuing to encourage outdoor dining and take out.
  • Reducing the maximum capacity of other indoor activities to 50 people (includes gyms, fitness organizations/studios, bowling alleys, ice rinks, indoor sports, pools and museums).
  • Limiting social gatherings to your household, or no more than six people total if the gathering includes those from outside your household. Reducing the frequency of those social gatherings (significantly in a two-week period) and keeping the same six people in your social gathering circle.

A seven-month long investigation concluded on 11-06-2020 with the execution of four search warrants in Josephine County and the arrests of several individuals. The Rogue Area Drug Enforcement (RADE) Team has been investigating the prison gang, European Kindred (EK), and several of their members in Josephine County.

During the investigation, which focused on firearms, robberies and illegal activity involving marijuana, RADE detectives obtained probable cause to apply for search warrants and arrest several members of the EK.

With the assistance of the Grants Pass Department of Public Safety (GPDPS), Oregon State Police Southwest Region Marijuana Team (OSP SWR MJ), Basin Interagency Narcotics Team (BINET), the Medford Area Drug and Gang Enforcement Team (MADGE), Josephine County District Attorney’s Office, Oregon Department of Justice – Organized Crime Division (ORDOJ), Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the below listed subjects were taken into custody and lodged at the Josephine County Jail.

Arrested and charged were:

Eric WIlliam Kelly

Kelly, Eric William, 33 years old

  • Racketeering
  • Robbery in the first degree
  • Robbery in the second degree
  • Theft in the first degree
  • Felon in Possession of a Firearm
  • Delivery of Methamphetamine
  • Delivery of Heroin
  • Delivery of Marijuana
  • Post-Prison Supervision detainer out of Multnomah County (on Post-Prison for Attempted Assault 1)
Kyle David Thier

Thier, Kyle David, 37 years old

  • Racketeering
  • Robbery in the first degree
  • Robbery in the second degree
  • Theft in the first degree
  • Delivery of Marijuana
  • Felon in Possession of a Firearm x6
Nathaniel David Anderson

Anderson, Nathaniel David, 32 years old

  • Robbery in the first degree
  • Robbery in the second degree
  • Theft in the first degree

Seized during the execution of the search warrants were over 30 illegally possessed firearms, over 100 pounds of dried marijuana, over 40 marijuana plants, methamphetamine, heroin, packaging material and scales. Additional charges may be added after reviewing the case in its entirety.

Other subjects are being sought in relation to this case, but there is believed to be no danger to the public at this time. Anyone with information or questions is asked to call Det. Sgt. Doni Hamilton 541-450-6370 or email dhamilton@grantspassoregon.gov. Please reference case numbers 2020-51213 or 2020-51295.

Around the State of Oregon

Portland residents are celebrating the victory of President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris.  

Hundreds of people gathered Saturday for spontaneous celebrations, including a rally that drew several hundred people to Pioneer Courthouse Square.  Meanwhile, opposing demonstrations between Biden supporters and Trump supporters drew a heavy police presence outside the state Capitol in Salem.

A lettuce produce recall is in effect in Oregon and several other states over E.coli concerns.  The voluntary recall by producer Tanimura and Antle in Salinas, California was confirmed by an FDA tweet Friday.  

The company’s romaine lettuce packed as single heads with packaging dates of October 15th and 16th are affected.  The product was distributed in Puerto Rico and in 19 U.S. states including Oregon.

Thanks to over 79,000 residential and business customers who choose Pacific Power’s Blue Sky renewable energy, the popular program ranks third in a national study by the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).

The NREL recently released its ranking of leading utility green power programs based on 2019 data. For the 18th consecutive year, PacifiCorp’s Blue Sky program – which includes Pacific Power and Rocky Mountain Power customers – is being recognized. Pacific Power Blue Sky participation consistently increases about 6 percent year over year. Continual growth is anticipated in the future as increasing numbers of customers choose to support renewable energy.

Blue Sky allows customers to match their energy usage with the purchase of renewable energy credits (RECs). It’s a simple way for participants to support new renewable energy in the West, above and beyond PacifiCorp’s substantial and growing commitment to renewables.

The state has mailed approximately $3.2 million in unclaimed funds to nearly 11,000 Oregonians, marking a distribution of unclaimed property that is a first of its kind for Oregon.

Individuals who received a letter in October informing them of forthcoming unclaimed funds will soon receive a check in the mail from Oregon’s Unclaimed Property Program, administered by the Oregon Department of State Lands. The checks, which range between $50 – $2,500, are being mailed to current and former Oregonians. Each check represents a unique sum of unclaimed funds — referred to as unclaimed property — owed to each person by a business or organization that was unable to return the money to its owner.

Common examples of unclaimed property include uncashed checks, forgotten bank accounts, security deposits, tax refunds, credit balances, investment accounts, payroll checks, refunds and more. When businesses lose contact with their patrons for a certain time, they are required under state law to turn over funds held for those individuals to Oregon’s Unclaimed Property Program.

The funds are held in a central repository until they are reunited with their owner or heir — typically when a claim is filed.

Salem – Oregon Insurance Commissioner Andrew Stolfi will host the second statewide virtual Wildfire Insurance Town Hall on Thursday, Nov. 12, at 11 a.m.

He will be joined by representatives from the Oregon Division of Financial Regulation to answer questions about wildfire insurance, the claims process, and how the division can help Oregonians. A representative from the Federal Emergency Management Association will also be available to answer questions about the need for flood insurance after a wildfire.

Everyone affected by the wildfires are encouraged to tune in to the Zoom live stream. You can also listen to the town hall by calling (253) 215-8782 or (669) 900-6833. Use Meeting ID: 992 4748 7370 and Passcode: 867128.

“Our goal for these wildfire town halls is to address the important insurance information people need right now to move toward recovery,” said Stolfi, who is also the director of the Department of Consumer and Business Services. “Recovery will take time, but we are here to help Oregonians through every phase of their insurance claim.”

Oregonians can submit questions before the town hall. The commissioner and division representatives will answer as many questions as possible during the event.

The town hall will be recorded and captioned in both English and Spanish for people who have difficulty hearing, as well as many of those who are not native English speakers. That recording will be made available as soon as the captioning is complete.

Last month’s town hall can be viewed on the division’s wildfire insurance page. The site, available in English and Spanish, has resources and contact information to help answer many wildfire insurance questions. The division is also prepared to help people in any language they choose. Visit dfr.oregon.gov/help for more information.

Girl Scouts of Oregon and Southwest Washington (GSOSW) will host the first-ever STEMapalooza, a two-day virtual Science, Technology, Engineering and Math expo, November 14-15, 2020.

Girls will engage with STEM experts, explore STEM careers and experience live webinar panels, science demonstrations, and self-guided activities. STEMapalooza is generously sponsored by First Tech Federal Credit Union.

Throughout the two-day event, girls can explore more than 20 distinct STEM experiences, from live panels and demonstrations to self-guided STEM experiments and activities from partners including:

  • First Tech Federal Credit Union
  • Cambia Health Solutions Women in Information Security
  • Chintimini Wildlife Center
  • Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum
  • GSOSW Medford Service Center’s Garden Leader
  • GSOSW Portland Metro Astronomy Club (Girl-Led)
  • Haystack Rock Awareness Program
  • Mad Science of Portland & Vancouver
  • Microsoft Portland
  • Miss Oregon
  • National Association of Women in Construction – Portland
  • Oregon Mermaids
  • Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI)
  • Oregon State University’s Marine and Geology Repository
  • Portland State University Women in Aerospace
  • Society of Women Engineers, Columbia River Section
  • Women in Science PDX
  • Women in Transportation Seminar
  • University of Oregon’s Pine Mountain Observatory

“We know that for girls—and especially girls of color—representation matters,” says Nicole Frisch, Senior Director, Community Engagement First Tech Federal Credit Union. “That’s why we’re excited to partner with Girl Scouts of Oregon and Southwest Washington for STEMapalooza, where girls will be able to see and engage with career professionals who look like them, learn about education and career journeys, and find a path for themselves in STEM. It’s one way we can work together to diversify the STEM pipeline, and support our next generation of thinkers, doers and leaders.”

Research shows that girls are keenly interested in STEM and excel at it. Yet, for a variety of reasons, girls often don’t pursue STEM—starting as early as elementary school—and women and girls are underrepresented across all levels of the STEM pipeline. Girl Scout STEM programs are designed to introduce Girl Scouts of every age to science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) and bridge the gender gap with progression-based, multi-year STEM experiences such as Girl Scouts’ new STEM Career Exploration badges. Through STEMapalooza, Girl Scouts in grades 2-8 will be able to complete steps toward these new badges as they connect with STEM professionals, learn about what they do, and discover their pathway to STEM careers.

“At GSOSW, it is so important for us to create STEM opportunities for girls where they can see themselves represented in a field that they have been told is traditionally not for them,” says Tessa Crosby, Program Manager for Girl Scouts of Oregon and Southwest Washington. “We hope to inspire girls through these opportunities to step outside of their comfort zones to try something new, so they can cultivate the skills to become the STEM leaders of tomorrow.”

A blacktail deer was killed and recovered on the Miller Woods Conservation Area property outside of McMinnville.

Witnesses located the deceased deer, believed to be a doe, lying in a hiking trail with 3 fawns standing around it shortly after hearing a single rifle shot.  A short time later the property caretaker found that the deer had been drug off of the property along the trail that led to NW Orchard View Road.

The Oregon State Police is requesting that anyone with information about this incident contact the Oregon State Police Northern Command Center at 1-800-442-0776 and leave information for Trooper Tayler Jerome.

Individuals wishing to remain anonymous may also contact the Oregon State Police through the Turn in Poachers line at

TIP Hotline: 1-800-452-7888 or *OSP(677)

TIP E-Mail: TIP@state.or.us (Monitored M-F 8:00AM – 5:00PM)

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