Stories for December 2012

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Friday, December 28

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Sanda convinced by faith healing trip

Clyde Sanda purposely didn’t read up on John of God, a famed faith healer in Brazil, before he went down to see him in September to mark his 60th birthday. He wanted to experience and evaluate for himself the healer made famous by Oprah. He came away convinced, noting that the three things he sought help on have all improved.

China mandates visiting elderly parents

BEIJING (AP) — Visit your parents. That’s an order. So says China, whose national legislature on Friday amended its law on the elderly to require that adult children visit their aged parents “often” — or risk being sued by them.

Chicken sounds alarm on fire

ALMA CENTER, Wis. (AP) — A Wisconsin couple says fire clucks, not fire trucks, helped them escape a blaze at their home.

Arizona sheriff plans to arm volunteers

PHOENIX (AP) — An Arizona sheriff has announced plans to deploy an armed volunteer posse to protect Phoenix-area students in the wake of the mass shooting at a Connecticut elementary school.

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Looming Longshormen strike would be costly

NEW YORK (AP) — Shipments of products as varied as flat-screen TVs, sneakers and snow shovels could sit idle at sea or get rerouted, at great time and expense, if more than 14,000 longshoremen go on strike as threatened — a wide-ranging work stoppage that would immediately close cargo ports on the East Coast and the Gulf of Mexico to container ships.

Washington Fish and Wildlife hears testimony regarding lower Columbia fishing

Washington Fish and Wildlife hears testimony regarding salmon and sturgeon fishing in the lower Columbia fishing

Thursday, December 20

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Morelli duo surges SWC to victory

Still licking their wounds after a 0-2 tournament run last weekend in Culver, the South Wasco County Redsides came out with a sense of purpose against Griswold.

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Cowboys wrangled by TD defense

The Dalles Wahtonka head coach Bob Townsend and all-league center Grayson Byers said this part of the season is very important for the Eagle Indians. Tuesday put this group on a good path.

Tuesday, December 18

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Editorial: Overconfidence is the biggest risk

The first snowflakes of the year are usually met with cheers by children hoping for time off school, but for adults, it’s a different story.

Cell tower workers stranded on Steens

Update: Workers reported rescued Tuesday afternoon. PORTLAND — Four cellphone tower workers stranded by a storm on Steens Mountain in southeast Oregon have holed up in a concrete block building at about 9,000 feet, where they had food, water and heat, authorities said Monday.

Olympia eyes transient rules

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — At its last meeting of the year Tuesday night the Olympia City Council is considering further restrictions on transients sitting on sidewalks and camping downtown.

Officials track tsunami dock off Washington coast

SEATTLE (AP) — Federal, state and tribal officials are attempting to track a large dock that was reported drifting off the coast of Washington state, one of potentially hundreds of objects that could wash up along the West Coast

Kitzhaber posts energy plan

SALEM (AP) — Gov. John Kitzhaber has released a final draft of his plan to wean Oregon off fossil fuels and increase the use of renewable energy.

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Oregon electoral college votes Obama

SALEM (AP) — Oregon’s presidential electors cast seven ballots for President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden.

Feds use forfeiture law on Oregon pot farmers

MEDFORD. (AP) — Federal authorities are increasingly using asset-forfeiture laws to seize money and property from people they believe are exploiting Oregon’s medical marijuana program.

Donations sought for Sherman School Library's Mitten Tree

Donations of gloves, mittens, hats and scarves of all sizes will be used to decorate the Sherman School library’s annual “Mitten Tree.” Organizers are also requesting warm throws and blankets to place under the tree. All donated items will be given to the local food bank and other agencies which serve Sherman County. For more information call 541-565-3279.

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Bigs, Littles share breakfast with Santa

On Saturday, Dec. 8, the Moose Lodge in The Dalles hosted the annual Breakfast with Santa for Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Columbia Gorge.

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Snow storm blankets much of Pacific Northwest

SEATTLE — The strongest Northwest storm of the season blew in early Monday on winds that gusted to more than 80 mph on the coast, knocking out power in places and creating blizzard-like conditions in the mountains.

Hwy 97 crash north of Redmond leaves two dead

Oregon State Police (OSP) troopers are continuing the investigation into Saturday evening’s two-vehicle traffic crash on Highway 97 north of Redmond that resulted in the death of two people and injuries to a third person.

Missing woman found safe at father’s home

Eighteen days after she walked away from a care facility in The Dalles, Carolyn Rice was located Sunday at the home of her father.

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The Dalles Mayor Wilcox moving on

The term of The Dalles Mayor Jim Wilcox is winding down and his farewell speech at the final council meeting of his term also served as a literary lesson. That came as no surprise to city officials or the 25-member audience because the mayor has opened every meeting by reading a quote by founding father Thomas Jefferson, the principal author of the Declaration of Independence, or another notable figure in history.

Friday, December 14

Permit to include Timberline bike trails and skills park

Mt. Hood National Forest Supervisor Christopher Worth signed a Decision Notice Nov. 19 to authorize an amendment of RLK and Company’s Special Use Permit to include the Timberline Ski Area Mountain Bike Trails and Skills Park.

Child and Family Center Holding Respite Day

On Dec. 15 Mid-Columbia Child and Family Center is holding a Holiday Season Respite Day for families of children ages 3-12 who have developmental, physical, mental and related disorders. Their siblings are also welcome. The center will be providing crafts, games, story time and a visit from Santa at Wonder Works from 4:30 - 8:30 p.m.

Huge DNA code of the Christmas tree revealed

To millions of people, the Christmas tree is a cheerful sight. To scientists who decipher the DNA codes of plants and animals, it’s a monster. We’re talking about the conifer, the umbrella term for cone-bearing trees like the spruce, fir, pine, cypress and cedar. Apart from their Yuletide popularity, they play big roles in the lumber industry and in healthy forest ecosystems.

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Final hearing in Seattle on coal export plant

After six hearings around Washington on a proposed coal export terminal near Ferndale, supporters and opponents already knew their lines for Thursday’s final meeting, which was moved to the state convention center because it can accommodate 3,500 people.

Teacher evaluations on horizon for District 21

North Wasco County School District 21 is well positioned to start implementing teacher and administrator evaluations in 2013, according to The Dalles Middle School principal Pat Consoliver.

The Dalles preps for higher garbage rates in January

Residents of The Dalles will start the new year with an average garbage rate increase of 1.9 percent and could also see their sewer bill climb in January.

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Hood River Walmart expansion denied

The deciding vote in what is likely to be a precedent-setting land use decision was cast by someone who didn’t even expect to be voting when she walked into the city council chambers. With Kate McBride’s tie-breaking vote the Hood River City Council, by a 4-3 vote, denied Walmart’s attempt to expand its Hood River store by 30,000 square feet. And with that vote, another layer of controversy was added to a process that has already seen plenty.