Stories for February 2013

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Thursday, February 28

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Jason Hinkle explores the world of stone

Like snowflakes, no two thunder eggs are the same. That’s what local expert Jason Hinkle loves about the rocks, which look plain on the outside but reveal beautiful colored centers when split open and polished. “You never get the same one twice,” he said. “I’ve cut well into tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands and no two are ever the same.”

Free online maps offer details on local lands

Finding out property information in Wasco County no longer involves making a formal request to the county and waiting for it to be filled.

Fred Meyer recalls bread

Fred Meyer has recalled several varieties of private label bread delivered to stores in Oregon, Washington and Idaho after discovering pieces of plastic in loaves. Fred Meyer spokeswoman Melinda Merrill told The Oregonian the plastic was discovered in the retailer’s Clackamas bakery. The bread is sold under the Tender Twist brand and includes wheat, cracked wheat and whole wheat varieties.

Report: Indian casinos revenue up slightly in 2011

HARTFORD, Conn. — Indian casinos brushed off weak consumer spending in a sluggish U.S. economic recovery to post a modest increase in revenue in 2011, an industry study reported Wednesday.

Rapoza seeks extension: Panel members want developer to commit funds

Four members of the Columbia Gateway Urban Renewal Advisory Committee believe it is time for the Rapoza Development Group to show they are serious about revitalizing the Granada block by putting $20,000 into a performance bond

Arts and Entertainment

Submit items to Arts & Entertainment by e-mail at kursprung@thedalleschro nicle.com, by fax at 541-298-1365, or at The Chronicle office, 315 Federal St., The Dalles. This Week Feb. 28 – Kramdown Karaoke, 9 p.m., The Vault, 209 E. Second St., The Dalles Feb. 28- March 1-2 – “I Hate Hamlet,” 7:30 p.m., admission $12 adults, $10 children and seniors over 61, Columbia Gorge Community College, 400 E. Scenic Drive, The Dalles, 541-370-2513, www.theatrecompany.org

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U.S. to boost support to Syria oppossition fighters

ROME (AP) — The Obama administration said Thursday that it will provide the Syrian opposition with an additional $60 million in assistance and — in a significant policy shift — will for the first time provide nonlethal aid like food and medical supplies directly to rebels battling to oust President Bashar Assad.

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World and national news in brief

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Benedict XVI has left the Vatican for the last time as pope, flying by helicopter to the Vatican’s vacation retreat hours before becoming the first pontiff to resign in 600 years.

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In search of the GOP

Cartoon by Rogers

Accused cop killer deemed impaired

ST. HELENS, Ore. (AP) — A Washington state man accused of killing the Rainier, Ore., police chief in 2011 is mentally impaired and can’t assist with his defense, a judge ruled Wednesday.

Gunman at Oregon RV park was recently evicted

PORTLAND — A gunman who wounded one person at an Oregon recreational vehicle park before he was fatally shot by law enforcement officers was evicted from the park last week after making threats.

McAndie pleads guilty: Former high school teacher gets 52 months for kidnap, rape

At a recent settlement conference, Donald Stuart McAndie, a hearing specialist who has been employed in Hood River and The Dalles, pleaded guilty to one count each of attempted rape, attempted kidnapping, attempted unlawful sexual penetration and attempted sexual abuse. McAndie, also a former high school teacher and soccer coach in Stevenson, Wash., was arrested Nov. 21, and was originally charged with five felonies. He is a Home Valley, Wash., resident and was arrested by Hood River City Police Detective Don Cheli after the victim, whose name is being withheld, reported the crime.

For the Record, Feb. 28

Police, fire, medical and lottery reports gathered Feb. 28, 2013.

Cities, schools eye property tax changes

SALEM — Leaders of Oregon’s cities and school districts want voters to undo some of the stringent restrictions they placed on property taxes in the 1990s.

Umps needed for spring ball

The Mid-Columbia Umpire Association is looking for officials. For more information, call Bob Ford at 541-980-4165.

Sluggers to hold tryouts

The Dalles Sluggers traveling team is holding a free tryout for athletes 10 and under from noon until 2 p.m. on Saturday, March 2. For more information, call 541-340-4379.

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One-two punch: Eagle Indian ski teams earn spots in state finals

In their final regular season ski event, The Dalles Wahtonka boy’s and girl’s ski teams showed why they are program to be reckoned with. Both teams earned state berths, and the TDW boy’s team had all four skiers finish in the top-11 to grab its second victory of the season in Mount Hood Ski League action Saturday at Skibowl.

'Coyote Thin' planned for acreage in Gifford Pinchot National Forest

The U.S. Forest Service will likely soon begin preparations to open up close to 3,800 acres of the Gifford Pinchot National Forest for commercial logging as part of a thinning operation that is slated to occur just a few miles outside of Trout Lake.

Wishram man runs amok in Goldendale

Goldendale Police responded to a report of a man running around town and acting strangely, last week. The first call came around 11:43 a.m. when a man wearing a dark outfit entered the General Store and ran through the store towards the back of the building. It was reported that he sat down and looked around, then ran into a locked door before running back out the front of the building.

Lyle gets new school districts

By Andrew Christiansen, Goldendale Sentinel New districts were on the agenda of last week’s Lyle school board meeting. The redistricting, which was initiated by public petition last year, updates the division lines for the three school districts and changes the school board from a five-member board with all members representing specific districts, to a five-member board with three members representing districts and two members elected at-large.

Wednesday, February 27

The Millennial Take: 'I wish I could be a Republican'

If there is one thing that the 2012 presidential election made clear, it is that Republicans are going to have to figure out how to attract more minority and youth voters to their ranks if they ever want to win a presidential election again. It’s simple math.

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Taking care of business: TDW defense reigns in win over Wilson

With 11 days between games, The Dalles Wahtonka senior Jessica Riggs discussed the importance of taking practices seriously while preparing for Wilson. This group remained sharp and focused in those days leading up to game time, and it showed on the hardwood in a 46-28 victory over the visiting Trojans Tuesday night at Kurtz Gym in The Dalles.

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Japanese disaster films highlight victims’ stories

TOKYO — The unnerving clicks of dosimeters are constant as people wearing white protective gear quickly visit the radiated no-go zones of decayed farms and empty storefronts. Evacuees huddle on blankets on gymnasium floors, waiting futilely for word of compensation and relocation.

For the Record, Feb. 27

Police, fire, medical and lottery reports gathered Feb. 27, 2013

Advanced breast cancer edges up in younger women

CHICAGO — Advanced breast cancer has increased slightly among young women, a 34-year analysis suggests. The disease is still uncommon among women younger than 40, and the small change has experts scratching their heads about possible reasons.

National and world news in brief

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Indian casinos brushed off weak consumer spending in a sluggish U.S. economic recovery to post a modest increase in revenue in 2011, an industry study reported Wednesday. Not only did revenue rise 3 percent, to $27.4 billion, but Indian casinos are holding on to their share of total casino gambling revenue, competing closely with commercial casinos, according to the report, “Casino City’s Indian Gaming Industry Report.”

Top leaders will meet hours after sequestration cuts kick in

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama will meet Friday with the top leaders in the House and Senate to discuss what to do about automatic cuts to the federal budget, White House and congressional leaders said. The meeting is set to take place hours after the $85 billion in across-the-board cuts will have officially kicked in. This suggests both sides are operating under the assumption a deal won’t be reached to avert the cuts ahead of the March 1 deadline.

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Voting rights law gets Supreme Court challenge

WASHINGTON (AP) — The most potent weapon in fighting discrimination at the ballot box was before the Supreme Court on Wednesday in a case that weighs the nation’s enormous progress in civil rights against the need to continue to protect minority voters.

What's Happening from Feb. 27 Chronicle

CONTRACTORS NOTICE: Oregon Landscape Contractors Law (ORS 671) requires all businesses that advertise and perform landscape contracting services be licensed with the Landscape Contractors Board. This 4-digit number allows a consumer to ensure that the business is actively licensed and has a bond insurance and a qualified individual contractor who has fulfilled the testing and experience requirements for licensure. For your protection call 503-967-6291 or visit our website: www.lcb.state.or.us to check the license status before contracting with the business. Persons doing landscape maintenance do not require a landscaping license. PANCAKE FEED: Wasco County Farm Bureau is hosting a pancake feed and scholarship auction as part of Farm City Appreciation Day, Thursday, Feb. 28, at 5:30 p.m., at St. Peter’s Parish Hall, 111 Cherry Heights Rd., The Dalles. A $4 donation is requested at the door. Children under 12 are free. The menu is pancakes, eggs and ham prepared by the North Wasco Education Foundation. Auction items have been donated by local businesses and friends of the Farm Bureau. Proceeds benefit agriculture in the classroom. In 2012, $4,500 was donated to programs in The Dalles, Dufur and Maupin. Tax deductible cash donations are welcome to both the Farm Bureau and the Education Foundation. BOOK PRESENTATION: On Friday, March 8, at 7 p.m. Dr. Linda Tamura, a professor of education at Willamette University and a sansei (third-generation Japanese American) from Hood River, will be at the Columbia Gorge Community College Hood River Indian Creek Campus to present her new book, “Nisei Soldiers Break Their Silence: Coming Home to Hood River.” For special access needs, contact Shayna Dahl at 541-506-6046.

Free Medicare 101 class at CGCC March 19

Donna Delikat, advocate for SHIBA (Senior Health Insurance Benefits Assistance), will be in The Dalles Tuesday, March 19, presenting a free class, Medicare 101. The program will be from 6 to 9 p.m. at Columbia Gorge Community College, The Dalles Campus, 400 E. Scenic Drive.

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'Hating Hamlet' starts Thursday

“I HATE HAMLET,” an adult comedy performed by the Theatre Company of The Dalles premiers Feb. 28 at 7:30 p.m., and continues March 1, 2, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, at 7:30 p.m. at the Columbia Gorge Community College-Auditorium Building 2, Floor 3. Characters pictured from left are: Andrew Rally (Lowell Weller), Deirdre McDavey (Ryli Rapelje), Gary Peter Lefkowitz (Dave Owens), Felicia Dantine (Linda Beiter), Lillian Troy (Jennifer Ashley), and John Barrymore (Steve Daniels). Advance tickets are available at Klindt’s Book Sellers, The Dalles and at the door. Adult admission is $12, students and seniors $10. Call the Theatre Company of The Dalles at 541-370-2513 for more information.

Local soldiers in court: One arrested for beating child, another pleads guilty to sex abuse

One National Guard soldier from Alpha Company in The Dalles has recently been sentenced for sex abuse and another is awaiting prosecution for assaulting a child. Private First Class Trask Kuhn, 21, is lodged in the regional jail unless he or a family member comes up with a $75,000 cash bail. He has been accused by Wasco County District Attorney Eric Nisley of physically abusing a child in his household who was less than three years of age.

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Hagel takes helm at Pentagon after bitter fight

WASHINGTON — Chuck Hagel took charge Wednesday of the Defense Department with deep budget cuts looming and Republican opponents still doubtful that he’s up to the job.

Worldwide bird count successful

Feb. 21, 2013 — From Antarctica to Afghanistan, bird watchers from 103 countries made history in the first global Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC), February 15-18, 2013. In the largest worldwide bird count ever, bird watchers set new records, counting more than 25.5 million birds on 120,000+ checklists in four days -- and recording 3,144 species, nearly one-third of the world's total bird species. The data will continue to flow in until March 1.

Fishing report for central zone

Weekend fishing opportunities: Water levels have been steady and fishing has been good on the Crooked River. Trout fishing in the upper Deschutes River between Lake Billy Chinook and Bend often picks up during increased flows, which are happening now. Anglers are catching a few winter steelhead in the Hood River, and that number will increase as the season progresses. Taylor Lake, near The Dalles, has been recently stocked and should offer some good trout fishing.

Corps seeks comments on St. Helens management plan

PORTLAND, Ore. - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is beginning the scoping process for a supplemental Environmental Impact Statement on its Mount St. Helens long-term sediment management program. The public is invited to comment on the scope of the Supplemental Environmental Impact until April 6, 2013.

Tuesday, February 26

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Tribe skiers maintain edge in GS

This The Dalles Wahtonka ski squad is moving right ahead with a state rally for a chance at hoisting gold. Eli Holeman won for the fourth time this season and five skiers overall chalked up top-10 finishes during Mount Hood Ski League varsity action in last Saturday’s giant slalom event on the Stadium course on Mount Hood Meadows.

For the Record, Feb. 26

Police, fire, medical and lottery reports gathered Feb. 26, 2013

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Northwest news in brief

GLENDALE, Calif. (AP) — Security cameras and panic buttons are coming to Glendale schools. A January bomb threat at a Glendale school and the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Connecticut are among the reasons for the Glendale Unified School District decision to bolster security.

Wash. anti-commujnist oath presists

OLYMPIA, Wash. — It has been just shy of 50 years since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that a Washington state law barring members of the Communist Party from voting or holding public-sector jobs is unconstitutional. Evidently, that is not enough time to remove it from the books.

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Oregon to review $30M in tax credits for wind farm

PORTLAND (AP) — The state Department of Energy is reviewing whether a major wind farm in north-central Oregon should have received $30 million in tax credits. Officials decided to re-evaluate their recent approval of the tax breaks for the Shepherd’s Flat wind farm after The Oregonian newspaper raised questions about whether it should have qualified for them.

Letter to the Editor: Safer buses

To the editor: I would like to give a big shout out to North Wasco County School District 21 for recently equipping the school buses with updated video and audio cameras. Technology has come a long way since they put the original cameras in and these discourage most of the negative behavior on the bus.

Letter to the Editor: Roman superstition

To the editor: Many people are aware of that uncomfortable aura emitting from churches creating that “stay away” warning. What is that? That strange aura is a mixture of boastful arrogance and pastor-induced ignorance. The arrogance gives pastors license to improve or ignore the Bible and the audacity to correct the Creator. Their ignorance of Bible history blinds them to their insulting disloyalty towards the Jewish Son.

Letter to the Editor: Thanks, Lions

Thanks, Lions To the editor: The Dalles-Wasco County Library Foundation would like to publicly thank The Dalles Lions Club for its generous contribution towards our library expansion project. The Foundation has been working to raise funds for a new space at our library devoted to our children and youth. With the Lions’ help, the Foundation is well on its way to raising the matching funds needed for this project.

National and world news in brief

LUXOR, Egypt (AP) — A hot air balloon flying over Egypt’s ancient city of Luxor caught fire and crashed into a sugar cane field on Tuesday, killing at least 19 foreign tourists in one of the world’s deadliest ballooning accidents and handing a new blow to Egypt’s ailing tourism industry. The balloon, which was carrying 20 tourists and a pilot, was landing after a flight over the southern town, when a landing cable got caught around a helium tube and a fire erupted, according to an investigator with the state prosecutor’s office.

Number of insurgent attacks higher than originally reported

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S.-led military coalition in Afghanistan incorrectly reported a decline in Taliban attacks last year, and officials said Tuesday that there was actually no change in the number of attacks on international troops from 2011 to 2012.

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Supreme Court rejects surveillance lawsuit

WASHINGTON (AP) — A sharply-divided Supreme Court on Tuesday threw out an attempt by U.S. citizens to challenge the expansion of a surveillance law used to monitor conversations of foreign spies and terrorist suspects.

What's Happening from Feb. 26 Chronicle

HEAD START: Mid-Columbia Children’s Council is now accepting applications for the Early Head Start program, which serves pregnant women and children from birth to 3 years old. Mid-Columbia Children’s Council’s Head Start and Early Head Start programs are free. Applications are available at your local Head Start Center, library, Health Department, DHS, by calling Mid-Columbia Children’s Council, Inc. at 541-386-2010, or in our website at www.mcccheadstart.org. February 26 FLOOD LECTURE: Cataclysms on the Columbia, the Great Missoula Floods Lecture will be at the next Hood River Watershed Group (HRWG) meeting is set for 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 26, at the Columbia Gorge Community College Indian Creek Campus in Hood River (Room 310). PSU geology professor Dr. Scott Burns will lecture on the catastrophic ice age floods that sculpted the Columbia Gorge and lower portions of the Hood River valley some 14,000 years ago. The event is free, and everyone is invited. THYROID LECTURE: Thyroid hormones affect everything from brain development, breathing, heart and nervous system function, to our body temperature, muscle strength, weight, cholesterol and more. Dr. James Lundblad, endocrinologist at Oregon Health and Science University and Columbia Crest Clinic Outpatient Services will talk about the many disorders that affect the thyroid including symptom management and treatment during a lecture Tuesday, Feb. 26, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. All lectures are free and at Water’s Edge, second floor Deschutes Room, 551 Lone Pine Blvd., The Dalles. Call 541-296-8444 or visit www.mcmc.net to register. February 27 HABITAT EVENT: The Dalles Area Habitat for Humanity is beginning the selection process for prospective home owners. Applications will be available at the following information meetings: Wednesday, February 27 at 7 p.m. at UCC Congregational (5th and Court) basement or Sunday, March 3 at 2 p.m. at St. Peter’s Catholic Church parish center. For more information call: 541-296-8817. February 28 THEATRE PERFORMANCE: “I Hate Hamlet,” and adult comedy, performed by the Theatre Company of The Dalles premiers Feb. 28 at 7:30 p.m., and continues March 1, 2, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 7:30 p.m. at the Columbia Gorge Community College-Auditorium Building 2, Floor 3. Advance tickets are available at Klindt’s Book Sellers, The Dalles and at the door. Adult admission is $12, students and seniors $10. Call The Theatre Company of The Dalles at 541-370-2513 for more information.

Officer zapped with stun gun

EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — A man accused of turning an officer’s stun gun against him during a struggle outside a bar was arraigned Monday on four charges.

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Pope to be called ‘emeritus pope,’ will wear white

VATICAN CITY — Pope Benedict XVI will be known as “emeritus pope” in his retirement and will continue to wear a white cassock, the Vatican announced Tuesday, again fueling concerns about potential conflicts arising from having both a reigning and a retired pope. The pope’s title and what he would wear have been a major source of speculation ever since Benedict stunned the world and announced he would resign on Thursday, the first pontiff to do so in 600 years.

Trainers share methods and tactics

Police recently revealed Newtown, Conn., mass shooter Adam Lanza picked a school for his killing spree because he wanted to surpass the body count of a Norwegian mass killer, and knew a school presented a high concentration of targets. With that introduction from a trainer, area law officers recently received daylong training in responding to “active shooter” calls, specifically focusing on a school shooting. Officers had a morning lecture, followed by an afternoon session of practical training with student role players. Lt. Mike Herbes, regional/advanced trainer for the Oregon Department of Public Safety Standards and Training, led the course.

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Preparing for the Worst: Emergency personnel practice response to deadly scenario

Three girls huddled in the corner of the classroom, screaming. Just feet away, two shooters were firing rounds. Drawn by the sound of gunfire, law officers burst into the classroom in a carefully orchestrated pattern, and soon both shooters were down.

Monday, February 25

Study suggests salmon find their home rivers through magnetic imprinting

BEND-When migrating, sockeye salmon typically swim up to 4,000 miles into the ocean and then, years later, navigate back to the upstream reaches of the rivers in which they were born to spawn their young. Scientists, the fishing community and lay people have long wondered how salmon find their way to their home rivers over such epic distances.

Columbia managers dial back flows for spawning chum to save water for upper spring Chinook

BEND-With the Columbia River system's water supply forecasts shrinking with nearly every passing day of the New Year, hydro and fishery managers this week agreed to back off, for at least the near future, the river flow levels intended to maintain higher elevation spawning areas for chum salmon.

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Hiking back in time

After hiking Washington’s Catherine Creek Natural Area we usually drive west on Old Road 8 to where it connects with Hwy 14 and then head home. Over the years we have ignored a small trailhead coming in from the north just before Rowland Lake. This week we decided to see what we were missing. Well, we were missing a lot. The area between Catherine Creek and the Mosier Syncline has had human activity for hundreds if not thousands of years. Native Americans have been active here for a very long time. In the 1900s, homesteaders began busily building homes, farms, ranches and other undertakings. Roads were a big problem back then. Highway 8 wasn’t built until 1910 and Highway 14 didn’t come along until the mid 1930s. That meant the homesteaders had to build goat-track roads up and over the walls of Rowland Basin and Mosier Syncline to be able to drive to Bingen and beyond.

Sunday, February 24

Mandatory reporting for hunters

Thanks to all hunters who reported their 2012 tags on time. Hunters who did not report 2012 deer and elk tags on time will pay a $25 penalty fee when they purchase a 2014 hunting license. If your 2012 deer and elk hunts extend into 2013, you have until April 15, 2013 to report your hunt. More information on reporting.

Columbia and Willamette spring chinook season underway

The first fish of the season have been caught on both the Columbia and Willamette. Seasonal regulations take affect March 1 and are posted here.

Spring trout stocking underway in Oregon

Early season trout stocking is underway in several areas and some stocking schedules have been posted –others are coming soon. Ready to explore some new water? Check out the Google-based maps for driving directions. It’s all on the ODFW Trout Stocking page.

Wildlife viewing opportunities in Oregon's central zone

Wildlife viewing opportunities for Oregon's central zone, including Sherman and Wasco counties.

Hunting reports for Oregon's central zone

Hunting reports and information for Oregon's central zone, provided by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Oregon's central zone fishing report

Fishing reports from the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife for Oregon's central zone.

Columbia zone fishing report

Weekend fishing opportunities and catch results for the Columbia River in Oregon.

Saturday, February 23

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Baker City just out of reach: CC hits buzzer-beating 3-pointer to defeat SWC, 50-47

MOLALLA - South Wasco County was 41.1 seconds away from earning their first Baker City state berth since the 2008-2009 campaign. So close, they could taste it. When the final buzzer rang however, a bitter flavor overcame them.

Budget panel members sought

Mid-Columbia Economic Development District (MCEDD) has opened the process to nominate applicants for its budget committee.

Public meetings for week beginning Feb. 25th

The Dalles Monday – The Dalles City Council, 5:30 p.m., City Hall council chambers, 313 Court St., The Dalles. Agenda: public hearing on community development block grant for implementing the Mid Columbia Regional Home Repair program for Wasco, Hood River and Sherman counties; amending dog ordinance to establish a penalty for failure to license dogs. Tuesday – Urban Renewal Advisory Committee special meeting, 5:30 p.m., City Hall council chambers, 313 Court St., The Dalles.

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Six leaking waste tanks are Hanford’s latest woe

YAKIMA, Wash. — Federal and state officials say six underground tanks holding a brew of radioactive and toxic waste are leaking at the country’s most contaminated nuclear site in south-central Washington, raising concerns about delays for emptying the aging tanks.

Wyden pledges renewed timber county payments

GRANTS PASS — Sen. Ron Wyden is pledging to renew and expand the federal subsidies to timber counties known as Secure Rural Schools. The Oregon Democrat says that for the next year or two, he wants to renew the payments that brought $105 million to Oregon in 2012 as part of $346 million that went to 729 counties nationwide. As a permanent solution, he wants to go beyond timber country and extend similar payments to rural counties with federal lands and waters being tapped for mining and energy.

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World news in brief

PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) — North Korea warned the top American commander in South Korea on Saturday of “miserable destruction” if the U.S. military presses ahead with routine joint drills with South Korea set to begin next month.

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First US Everest team reunites

BERKELEY, Calif. — It might be hard to conceive now, in an era of extreme sports and ultra-light equipment, but there was a time when Americans who set out to conquer mountains engaged in a pursuit that was as lonely as it was dangerous.

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Want a job? First you need a job

NEW YORK — Help wanted. Qualifications: Must already have a job. It’s a frustrating catch for those out of work in an era of high unemployment: looking for a job, only to find that some employers don’t want anyone who doesn’t already have one.

Simple steps can boost perennial survival

A couple weeks ago my wife and I took advantage of the beautiful late winter weather that we were having and planted some container plants in our garden. This is in a bed that we started renovating last fall. It was the first perennial bed that we planted in our yard many years ago and it had turned into a hodgepodge of plants that we thought might be interesting. The problem was that there was no order in the bed and it lacked unity.

What's Happening from Feb. 24th Chronicle

HIGH TEA: Wendy and Friends High Tea and Auctions will be celebrating its 10th annual tea on Saturday, March 2, at 1 p.m. at The Dalles Middle School. This event is sponsored by Sonrise Academy and presented by the Wendy Ott Memorial Scholarship Foundation. Tickets are on sale now for $18 in advance or $22 at the door. Group Rates are also available. Tickets are on sale at Sonrise Academy or from tea hostesses. For information call 541-298-8922. BOOK SALE: The Dalles Friends of Library used book sale, Saturday March 2, 10 a.m. to noon, will be at 722 Court St., at the Book Barn behind the Library. It is the first sale of the year and features lots of gardening books, and a little something for everyone including audio books on tape and lots of free stuff. Proceeds aid the library and their community programs. Help support Literacy. February 24 SMART FUNDRAISER: The Dalles chapter of SMART, Start Making a Reader Today, will hold its annual fundraiser Sunday, Feb. 24, from 2 to 5 p.m. at the Sunshine Mill complex, 901 E. Second St., The Dalles. This event helps support one-on-one reading by adult volunteers with kindergarten through third grade students. It also provides free books for the students to take home to have as their own. Free wine tasting is provided by Quenett Winery and Copa di Vino. Many local restaurants are providing an array of hors d’oeuvres. A raffle and silent auction will feature many items donated by local businesses and individuals. Live music is also on the agenda. Tickets are $20 at Klindt’s Booksellers and at the door during the event.

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Macnab helps bridge the gap between agricultural science and the farm

Sandy Macnab likes to tell folks he went to Oregon State University to get his schooling, then came back to the farm to get his education.

Friday, February 22

Horse influenza found in Eastern Oregon

CORVALLIS, Ore. – A horse from Eastern Oregon that was referred to Oregon State University’s veterinary teaching hospital because of illness has been diagnosed with equine influenza virus, a highly contagious respiratory disease in horses that typically is not fatal.

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Pro wrestlers mix it up in The Dalles

Once he emerges from the curtains for his grand entrance, C.J. Edwards strips himself of being a father, a husband, a middle class worker and becomes the bad boy from Long Beach, Calif.

What's happening from Feb. 22 Chronicle

Announce your public, nonprofit activities here, 75 words or less. E-mail to tdchron@thedalleschronicle.com or fax to 541-298-1365 or drop off at the Chronicle, 315 Federal St., PO Box 1910, The Dalles OR 97058. New Entries TUESDAY LECTURE: Susan Benedict, RN, from the Pulmonary Rehabilitation program at Waters Edge, will be the featured speaker at the Mid-Columbia Senior Center’s Tuesday Lecture Feb. 26, at 11 a.m. She will discuss the upcoming Pulmonary Health Awareness event in March as well as steps we can take to breathe easier and feel better.

Kidnap victims released in Syria

BEIRUT (AP) — Activists say that more than 200 people kidnapped recently by gunmen from opposing Sunni and Shiite villages in northern Syria have been released, temporarily easing local tensions.

Pistorius granted bail pending murder trial

PRETORIA, South Africa — In an agonizingly slow announcement, a magistrate allowed Oscar Pistorius to go free on bail Friday, nine days after the Paralympian was arrested in the Valentine’s Day killing of his girlfriend. Pistorius’ family members and supporters shouted “Yes!” when Chief Magistrate Desmond Nair made his decision after a more than 1 hour and 45 minute explanation of his ruling to a packed courtroom.

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National news in brief

HONOLULU (AP) — A federal grand jury has indicted a Hawaii man on charges he lied to authorities when he said a possible hijacker was aboard an Alaska Airlines flight to Seattle. Timothy David Hershman faces up to five years in prison if convicted. Last month the FBI said a caller reported a possible hijacker aboard a Jan. 17 flight from Kailua-Kona.

Sea otter has basketball talent

PORTLAND (AP) — Nothing but net? No problem for one sporty sea otter at the Oregon Zoo. Eddie the otter has been trained to dunk a basketball through a small plastic hoop. It’s an exercise a veterinarian recommended for his arthritic elbows. Eddie is 15, quite old for a sea otter. But as they put it at the Oregon Zoo, he’s got game. Eddie makes most of his shots. But when he misses, he hits the boards, grabs the rebound and goes up again until he scores.

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States get health plan brief

SALEM — Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber will brief other state leaders this weekend on his plan to lower Medicaid costs, touting an overhaul that President Barack Obama highlighted in his State of the Union address for its potential to lower the deficit even as health care expenses climb. The Oregon Democrat leaves for Washington, D.C., on Friday to pitch his plan that changes the way doctors and hospitals are paid and improves health care coordination for low income residents so that treatable medical problems don’t grow in severity or expense.

Pine Grove auction, south of Hood River, seeks donations

That annual jolt. The 49th annual auction on March 2 at Pine Grove Fire Department auction is like the cardiac debrillators the auction helped pay for last year: the needed burst in this case goes to the volunteer fire department. The yearly fundraiser helps keep the organization well-equipped, and provides a fun event for the community.

Pipe bomb found on Post Canyon cycling trail

Members of the Oregon State Patrol and Portland Police bomb squads destroyed a pipe bomb at the popular Seven Streams trail head in Post Canyon Tuesday afternoon. Hood River County Sheriff Matt English said deputies received a report from a county forestry employee regarding the device at around 1 p.m.

For the Record, Feb. 22

Police, fire, medical and lottery reports gathered Feb. 22, 2013.

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Royal Rumble in The Dalles

The raucous crowd of 200 filled The Dalles’ Eagles Lodge Aerie 2126 with boisterous chants of U.S.A.!, U.S.A.!, U.S.A.! while Oregon City resident Buddy Highway locked wrestling horns with England’s own ‘Gentleman’ George Michaels in the first bout of the night. Edwards, Highway and a slew of grapplers including ‘Maniac’ Matt Bourne, tag team champions Bubba and Jeremy Blanchard and the son of ‘Rowdy’ Roddy Piper, Colt Toombs, were on display Thursday during a filming of Portland Wrestling Uncut. Highway won his match and exited stage left to a cascade of cheers from the crowd — a great patriotic way to start.

Thursday, February 21

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Drill Time: Active shooter training underway

Officers from throughout the region gathered Tuesday for "active shooter" response training in The Dalles. Visit the photographer's blog, "Eye on the Storm," for early observations regarding the training.

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Wolfpack rains on Ranger parade: Portland Waldorf’s dynamic duo hits 11 3-pointers in 59-56 victory

On a rainy evening in Dufur, the twin duo of Anya and Greta Conlon rained down threes as the main weapon of choice to lead No. 19 Portland Waldorf to a 59-56 sub-round playoff upset win over the No. 11 Dufur Rangers Wednesday night at Dufur High School. In all, the Conlon twins hit 17 field goals, 11 from long distance in combining forces for 55 points, including all 24 in the opening quarter.

Lawmaker seeks private-school tax credits

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — An Oregon lawmaker wants to ask voters to allow tax credits to pay for tuition at private and religious schools.

‘Land use junkie’ on gorge commission

Part two of a four part series. Dan Ericksen, a “land use junkie,” orchardist and former Wasco County commissioner and judge, sought county-level appointments to the commission twice before winning a governor’s appointment.

County gets Smith’s medical bills

Wasco County Commissioner Scott Hege was “astounded” to learn that almost $250,000 in medical bills for a deceased murder suspect’s brain surgery might have to be paid by local taxpayers. “When I heard that, my jaw hit the floor and I thought, ‘Are you kidding me?’” he said.

Entertainment calendar from Feb. 21 Chronicle

Live ensembles headline entertainment in the Columbia Gorge this week, starting with a heroic performance by the Columbia Gorge Sinfonietta this weekend and continuing with the premier of The Dalles Theatre Company’s “I Hate Hamlet.”

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Sinfonietta heralds ‘heroic’ performances

Music has always played a part in stirring up patriotism in the hearts of humankind. Two Columbia Gorge Sinfonietta concerts slated for this weekend will explore that phenomenon through their presentation of “The Heroic Spirit in Music.” On Friday in The Dalles Civic Auditorium and Sunday at Wy’east Middle School performing arts center, the 45 musicians of the Sinfonietta, under the direction of Mark Steighner, will offer an array of musical perspectives that explore this theme.

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National and World news in brief

ATLANTA (AP) — A federal grand jury has indicted four people in a 2009 salmonella outbreak linked to a Georgia peanut processing plant. The indictment unsealed Wednesday in federal court in Georgia charges four employees with Virginia-based Peanut Corp. of America. The charges include conspiracy, wire fraud, obstruction of justice and others related to contaminated or misbranded food. The company’s filthy processing plants were blamed for the outbreak that killed nine people and sickened hundreds. The company later went bankrupt. Named in the indictment were company owner Stewart Parnell, vice president Michael Parnell, Georgia plant manager Samuel Lightsey and Georgia plant quality assurance manager Mary Wilkerson.

Jackson Jr. pleads guilty to misusing funds

CHICAGO — Residents in this swath of sprawling Chicago neighborhoods and suburbs have brimmed with loyalty to Jesse Jackson Jr. over the past 17 years, giving him an enthusiastic majority each election — even after questionable links to ex-Gov. Rod Blagojevich, reports of an extramarital affair and a bizarre five-month medical leave.

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Private US firms take major role vs. cyberattacks

WASHINGTON — When Kevin Mandia, a retired military cybercrime investigator, decided to expose China as a primary threat to U.S. computer networks, he didn’t have to consult with American diplomats in Beijing or declassify tactics to safely reveal government secrets.

Letter to the Editor: Out of place

To the editor: Thank you for the editorial called “A Matter of Propriety and Perception.” I, too, felt that Bill Dick was out of place to ask for more funding for the Discovery Center. He has been on that board since the beginning and should have put his talents into doing audits. Why did all those years go by with an employee taking money? And who is left to pay for all this? More tax dollars going for this mistake and Discovery Center has been a drain on all taxpayers.

Letter to the Editor: Spring nightmare

To the editor: Spring has arrived too early for those involved in animal rescue.

On the Record, Feb. 21

Police, fire, medical and lottery reports gathered Feb. 21, 2013.

California to receive larger share of mortgage deal

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California should receive at least $20.6 billion from a settlement with the nation’s major mortgage lenders, the largest share of any state and about $2 billion more than expected when the agreement to assist homeowners was announced last year, according to a report released Thursday.

Wednesday, February 20

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Wyden takes a close look at Hanford

RICHLAND, Wash. — The nation’s most contaminated nuclear site — and the challenges associated with ridding it of its toxic legacy — will be a subject of upcoming hearings and a higher priority in Washington D.C., a key lawmaker said Tuesday.

For the Record, Feb. 20th

Police, fire, hospital and lottery reports gathered for Feb. 20, 2013.

Anne Hathaway honored by Costume Designers Guild

LOS ANGELES — Anne Hathaway was deemed best dressed — by people who dress her for work. The “Alice in Wonderland” and “The Dark Knight Rises” actress, who’s nominated for the supporting actress Academy Award for her role in “Les Miserables,” was honored Tuesday evening with the spotlight award at the 15th annual Costume Designers Guild Awards. The spotlight award honors actors and directors for their collaborations with costume designers.

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Redsides pour it on: SWC outscores Damascus Christian in every quarter

So many positive things can come from a loss. Three days after losing to Horizon Christian in the Big Sky conference district championship, the South Wasco Redsides rode some hot second-half shooting and a decisive rebounding effort in their 69-52 victory over Damascus Christian in opening round 1A state playoff action in Maupin.

National and world news in brief

WASHINGTON (AP) — Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich says President Barack Obama’s campaign was “eight, maybe 10 years, ahead” of the Republican Party last year in understanding the rapidly changing face of the American electorate. Gingrich tells “CBS This Morning” that GOP strategists have failed to respond effectively to the new demographic landscape.

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Pentagon notifies Congress of likely furloughs

WASHINGTON (AP) — Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told Congress on Wednesday that if automatic government spending cuts kick in on March 1 he may be compelled to furlough the “vast majority” of the Defense Department’s 800,000 civilian workers.

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Federal research chimps savor retirement

KEITHVILLE, La. (AP) — For the first time in their lives, four aging chimpanzees once used in federal research can go outside whenever they like. They can lie on the grass, clamber onto a platform 20 feet up on a chimp-style jungle gym and gaze freely at the open sky, the vista unbroken by steel bars.

What's happening from Feb. 20 Chronicle

New Entries RODEO BANQUET: The Fort Dalles Rodeo Association hosts its annual banquet and coronation of the 2013 Fort Dalles Rodeo Queen, Candace Shattuck, Saturday, March 9, at The Dalles Country Club. Admission is $30 per person. A no-host social hour starts at 6 p.m., with dinner at 7. Menu features prime rib or halibut. RSVP by March 5 to 541-980-4190 or Villalobos@wildblue.net. ORGANIZING MEETING: An AFS meeting is open to all folks interested in helping to organize the chapters work. Now is a great time to get involved. The meeting starts at 7 p.m., Monday, Feb. 25, at the Lovell’s home, 2522 Old Dufur Rd. The Dalles. THYROID LECTURE: Thyroid hormones affect everything from brain development, breathing, heart and nervous system function, to our body temperature, muscle strength, weight, cholesterol and more. Dr. James Lundblad, endocrinologist at Oregon Health and Science University and Columbia Crest Clinic Outpatient Services will talk about the many disorders that affect the thyroid, including symptom management and treatment during a lecture Tuesday, Feb. 26, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. All lectures are free and at Water’s Edge, second floor Deschutes Room,551 Lone Pine Blvd., The Dalles. Call 541-296-8444 or visit www.mcmc.net to register.

Backyard astronomers: An eye to the February sky

Late February is a good time of month for the backyard astronomer. Columbia Gorge Amateur Astronomers will host a free session for the public Friday, Feb. 22, up at Thompson Track in The Dalles, weather permitting. The session will be from 6:30 to 9 p.m.

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Blair: opinion has moderated

The Columbia River Gorge Commission got four new members last year, and while their leanings can somewhat be discerned from their backgrounds, they have yet to make any major decisions.

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Future science: Using 3D worlds to visualize medical data

CHICAGO — Take a walk through a human brain? Fly over the surface of Mars? Computer scientists at the University of Illinois at Chicago are pushing science fiction closer to reality with a wraparound virtual world where a researcher wearing 3D glasses can do all that and more. In the system, known as CAVE2, an 8-foot-high screen encircles the viewer 320 degrees. A panorama of images springs from 72 stereoscopic liquid crystal display panels, conveying a dizzying sense of being able to touch what’s not really there.

Tuesday, February 19

High court hears high-stakes soybean fight

WASHINGTON — Vernon Hugh Bowman seems comfortable with the old way of doing things, right down to the rotary-dial telephone he said he was using in a conference call with reporters. But the 75-year-old Indiana farmer figured out a way to benefit from a high-technology product — soybeans that are resistant to weed-killers — without always paying the high price that such genetically engineered seeds typically bring. In so doing, he ignited a legal fight with seed-giant Monsanto Co. that has now come before the Supreme Court, with arguments taking place Tuesday.

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Amid Scout turmoil, other groups hope to grow

NEW YORK — With the Boy Scouts of America entangled in a furor over its ban on gays, lesser-known youth organizations across the ideological spectrum see an opportunity. They wonder if the turmoil might prompt some families to give them a closer look as options for their boys.

For the record, Feb. 19th

Police, medical, fire and lottery reports gathered Feb. 19, 2013.

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Morales finishes fourth to secure state bid

Eric Morales is now four wins away from achieving every wrestler’s dream – a state championship. Saturday at Marshall High School in Portland, Morales, while wrestling at the 170-pound classification, scored four wins, two by pin to end up in fourth place for The Dalles Wahtonka’s only state qualifier.

Gates, Buffett push pledge to give wealth to charity

SEATTLE (AP) — British billionaire and Virgin Group founder Richard Branson and his wife Joan are among the newest philanthropists who have pledged to give away half their wealth to charity.

Letter to the Editor: A right to choose

To the editor: One of God’s most important gifts is choice. God’s choice is to not force us to do anything. I’m Irish and my parents were married on St. Patrick’s Day, so if I choose to celebrate this year with a big party, no one should care. It’s my God-ordained choice. I go to the bakery and ask about getting the cake, but the baker says “I don’t believe in St. Patrick so I choose to deny your request.”

Letter to the Editor: Possible confusion

The final paragraph of The Chronicle’s Feb. 6 story, “Mayor eyes role and goals,” was constructed in such a way that casual readers may draw erroneous conclusions from it. Here is how it appeared:

Letter to the Editor: Huffman believes

To the editor: I want to thank our representative, John Huffman for being a chief sponsor of HB 2787 (Tuition Equity). This bill has much vocal opposition. Representative Huffman has gone out on a limb because he believes, as I do, that it is the right thing to do.

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World and national news in brief

Google stock price tops $800 SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Google’s stock price topped $800 for the first time Tuesday amid renewed confidence in the company’s ability to reap steadily higher profits from its dominance of Internet search and prominence in the increasingly important mobile device market. The milestone comes more than five years after Google’s shares initially hit $700. Not long after breaking that barrier in October 2007, the economy collapsed into the worst recession since World War II and Google’s stock tumbled into a prolonged malaise that eventually led to a change in leadership. Court to look at spending limit WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court will hear a challenge to campaign finance laws limiting how much an individual can give to political campaigns. The justices on Tuesday decided to hear an appeal from Shaun McCutcheon of Alabama and the Republican National Committee. They are arguing that it’s unconstitutional to stop a donor from giving more than $46,200 to political candidates and $70,800 to political committees and PACs.

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Pistorius: Thought lover an intruder in shooting

PRETORIA, South Africa (AP) — Oscar Pistorius wept Tuesday as his defense lawyer read the athlete’s account of how he shot his girlfriend to death on Valentine’s Day, claiming he had mistaken her for an intruder.

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Multimillion-dollar diamond heist in Brussels

BRUSSELS (AP) — Eight masked gunmen forced their way through the security fence at Brussels’ international airport, drove onto the tarmac and snatched some $50 million worth of diamonds from the hold of a Swiss-bound plane without firing a shot.

Vessel inspection Feb. 22 in The Dalles

VESSEL INSPECTION: The U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary will hold its annual vessel inspection Friday, Feb. 22, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at The Dalles Marina ramp and at Mayer Park ramp Saturday, Feb. 23, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Vessels that pass inspection will receive a 2013 sticker and certificate.

SMART Fundraiser Feb. 24th

SMART FUNDRAISER: The Dalles chapter of SMART, Start Making a Reader Today, will hold its annual fundraiser Sunday, Feb. 24, from 2 to 5 p.m. at the Sunshine Mill complex, 901 E. Second St., The Dalles. This event helps support one-on-one reading by adult volunteers with kindergarten through third grade students. It also provides free books for the students to take home to have as their own.

Soroptimist seeking women award winners

Soroptimist of Hood River is hoping to hear from some of the dozens of women who has received its Women’s Opportunity Award in the past 15 to 20 years.

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Eagle Watch kicks off Feb. 23-24 near Madras

MADRAS — The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department, Portland General Electric, The Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, and The Crooked River National Grassland invite the public to attend the 18th annual Eagle Watch, a celebration of the cultural and ecological importance of the majestic birds of prey Feb. 23 and 24 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Round Butte Overlook Park, 10 miles west of Madras.

US security firm alleges massive Chinese hacking

BEIJING — Cyberattacks that stole massive amounts of information from military contractors, energy companies and other key industries in the U.S. and elsewhere have been traced to the doorstep of a Chinese military unit, a U.S. security firm alleged Tuesday.

Deadline today for student immunizations

SALEM (AP) — Wednesday is the deadline for Oregon parents to make sure their children’s immunizations are up to date or they could be excluded from school.

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Explosion startles citizen

A resident in the area of 12th and Quinton streets reported hearing a big boom late Monday night, and police found a plastic 20 oz. bottle wrapped in black electrical tape with Nazi symbols on it. A fuse hole was drilled into the cap of the bottle, according to the police log.

Sunday, February 17

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TD Art Center announces student art awards

The Dalles Art Center have announced the 2013 awards for the annual Mid Columbia Middle and High School open juried show. Retired art instructors Doug Leash and Chuck Kornegay were the judges this year.

Saturday, February 16

Public meetings for week beginning Feb. 17

The Dalles Tuesday — The regularly scheduled Urban Renewal Advisory Committee meeting set for Tuesday, Feb. 19 is cancelled. A special meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 26, at 5:30 p.m. in City Hall Council Chambers, 313 Court St., The Dalles. Wasco County

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Facebook gets unwelcome look at hackers’ dark side

SAN FRANCISCO — Facebook is getting an unwelcome look at the shady side of the hacking culture that CEO Mark Zuckerberg celebrates.

Wash. wolf population nearly doubles in 1 year

SPOKANE, Wash. — The number of gray wolves in Washington nearly doubled in the past year, according to a new survey released Friday by the state Department of Fish and Wildlife.

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National and world news in brief

Budget fight: not so bad? WASHINGTON (AP) — Get ready for two weeks of intensifying warnings about how crucial, popular government services are about to wither — including many threats that could eventually come true. President Barack Obama and congressional Republicans made no progress last week in heading off $85 billion in budget-wide cuts that automatically start taking effect March 1. Lacking a bipartisan deal to avoid them and hoping to heap blame and pressure on GOP lawmakers, the administration is offering vivid details about the cuts’ consequences: trimmed defense contracts, less secure U.S. embassies, furloughed air traffic controllers. Past administrations have seldom hesitated to spotlight how budget standoffs would

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Meteors often menace Earth: 2 space rocks hours illustrate danger

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — A space rock even bigger than the meteor that exploded like an atom bomb over Russia could drop out of the sky unannounced at any time and wreak havoc on a city. And Hollywood to the contrary, there isn’t much the world’s scientists and generals can do about it.

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‘Stay calm and execution follows’: Dufur Ranger girls bust deadlock with Echo

HERMISTON — It appeared as if the Echo Cougars were about to make a big run for the district championship game. But mantra inside the Dufur huddle was to remain calm and the execution would follow.

Letter to the Editor: Leave it to patriots

The people who created this country understood the problems with government very well. They came from where a supreme government supremely ruled. While they formed our government, they knew that by definition government itself is anti-freedom. With our constitution and its amendments, they did their best to ensure the future people of this country their freedom. Likely the most important of all freedoms is the right to own and bear arms. We weren’t given that right so Daniel Boone could legally hunt deer. We were given that right so we could always defend all our other freedoms from threats, both foreign and domestic.

Invasive species permit required for Oregon paddlecraft

The Oregon State Marine Board and Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife remind operators of paddlecraft (kayaks, canoes, paddleboards, sailboats, etc.) that it’s time to buy an aquatic invasive species prevention permit for 2013. Permits are required for paddlecraft and other non-motorized vessels 10 feet long and longer for both residents and nonresidents. Permits are transferable between boats, but each boat on the water needs to carry a permit.

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Plenty of snow fun on Mt. Adams

TROUT LAKE, Wash. — It’s a substantial drive — about two hours — from the Portland-Vancouver metro area to the cross-country ski and snowshoe trails on the south side of Mount Adams. So, that’s the down side. But here are the benefits:

What's Happening from Feb. 16th Chronicle

Announce your public, nonprofit activities here, 75 words or less. E-mail to tdchron@thedalleschronicle.com or fax to 541-298-1365 or drop off at the Chronicle, 315 Federal St., PO Box 1910, The Dalles OR 97058. New Entries HAPPINESS PASSPORT: The Passport to Happiness monthly talk will be held Wednesday, February 20 from 3 to 4:30 at the Senior Center in The Dalles. This month’s speaker is Julie Reynolds, PhD. Her talk will be on “Social Health and Happiness” and will feature some short video clips and volunteer opportunities. The public is invited to this free event, and every person who attends will receive a free copy of Passport to Happiness calendar.

Judge backs sea lion plans

PORTLAND (AP) — A federal judge in Oregon has ruled that the National Marine Fisheries Service did not err when it reauthorized a program targeting sea lions for death in the Pacific Northwest. Judge Michael Simon said in a ruling issued Friday that the program intended to preserve endangered salmon by killing sea lions is within the bounds of the fisheries service.

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Running toward danger

Oregon State Police Det. Elijah Preston was driving by the Clackamas Town Center on I-205 last Dec. 11, when a call came over the police radio. There was a shooting in progress inside the mall.

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Active shooter training set in The Dalles

Over 80 area law officers will receive day-long training in responding to “active shooter” incidents over the next four days at the vacant Chenowith Middle School. The training, which will see 20 officers a day getting trained between Feb. 18 and Feb. 21, is organized by the Oregon State Police and the state’s police academy, the Oregon Public Safety Academy.

States’ health care choices set up national health experiment

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul is unfolding as a national experiment with American consumers as the guinea pigs: Who will do a better job getting uninsured people covered, the states or the feds?

Planning getaway without kids can be a challenge

FORT COLLINS, Colo. — In 12 years, my husband and I have had two vacations without our daughter. Once, we drove 200 miles to drop her at her godparents; the other time, her grandfather flew 850 miles on an $800 plane ticket to spell us.

Judge clears sea lion control plan

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A federal judge in Oregon has ruled that the National Marine Fisheries Service did not err when it reauthorized a program targeting sea lions for death in the Pacific Northwest.

Repairs close Union Street rail crossing through weekend

Union Pacific Railroad plans to perform crossing repair at the Union Street railroad crossing -- not Webber Street as previously announced -- on Saturday, February 16, from 8 a.m. until 7 p.m. on February 17th, 2013. At that time Union Street between West 1st and 2nd Streets will be closed to all traffic, including emergency vehicles.

Friday, February 15

League tryouts scheduled

The Dalles Babe Ruth baseball is holding its final signup day for local kids from the ages of 12-15 starting from 5:30-7 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 22 at Quinton Street Ballpark. Cost is $90 for the first child and $75 for additional family members. Any signups after this date will be assessed an additional $20 fee. Parents are to bring a copy of birth record. For more signup information, call 541-993-2230.

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No. 8 Redsides demolish Arlington

With many of the names on the South Wasco County Redside roster not having any previous experience in a district playoff setting under the bright lights, they came out and handled it like wily veterans.

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National news in brief

MOBILE, Ala. (AP) — Passengers who finally escaped the disabled Carnival cruise ship Triumph were checked into hotels early Friday for a hot shower, food and sleep or riding buses back to Texas after five numbing days at sea on a ship left powerless by an engine-room fire. The vacation ship carrying some 4,200 people docked late Thursday in Mobile after a painfully slow approach that took most of the day. Passengers raucously cheered after days of what they described as overflowing toilets, food shortages and foul odors.

Unyielding GOP politicians doing what voters ask?

HEBER CITY, Utah (AP) — U.S. Rep. Jason Chaffetz flew home from Washington last week, leaving behind a capital baffled by Republicans like him in Congress: those who stubbornly refuse to compromise with President Barack Obama, a tactic that some see as damaging the GOP brand and pushing the nation repeatedly to the brink of fiscal chaos.

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Meteor falls in Russia, 700 injured by blasts

UPDATE: Updated with link to article with Russian videos. MOSCOW — A meteor streaked through the sky and exploded Friday over Russia’s Ural Mountains with the power of an atomic bomb, its sonic blasts shattering countless windows and injuring more than 750 people. The spectacle deeply frightened thousands, with some elderly women declaring the world was coming to an end.

Social media used in search for Hood River theft suspect

Hood River Police are using social media to identify a suspect in a recent theft case. On Thursday the department posted a photo and message on Facebook asking for help in identifying a man who was viewed on store videotape taking a wallet. The wallet, belonging to a Hood River woman, was inside a purse that was left in a shopping cart Feb. 11 at Safeway in Hood River, according to Hood River Police Det. Mike Martin. The suspect appears to be 45-50 years old, with dark hair that is close-cropped and receding.

Gov’t to crack down on unsafe tour bus operators

WASHINGTON (AP) — Responding to recent deadly tour bus accidents, teams of federal inspectors will target bus companies with a history of problems as part of a national crackdown aimed at weeding out unsafe operators, the government said Thursday.

For the Record, February 15

Police, fire, medical and lottery reports gathered Feb. 15, 2013

Coal company rapped by research group

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — An environmental research group says an Australian company seeking to ramp up U.S. coal shipments to Asia has financial problems that could hobble its export ambitions.

Love bird penguins make a splash at Portland Zoo

PORTLAND — A smartly dressed young couple has moved in at the Oregon Zoo just in time for Valentine’s Day. Two young Humboldt penguins, Luna and Milo, arrived last month from the Roger Williams Park Zoo in Providence, R.I., and have now joined the 16 other penguins in the zoo’s penguinarium.

VA grants burial rights for same-sex Ore. couple

PORTLAND— The Department of Veterans Affairs has decided to allow the same-sex spouse of a member of the military to be buried in a U.S. national cemetery. VA Secretary Eric Shinseki granted a waiver of department policy to allow the burial of Nancy Lynchild’s ashes, the agency said in a statement Thursday. U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., who called Shinseki last month to lobby for the action, said the Oregon couple will become the first same-sex couple buried together in a national military cemetery. The VA was trying to determine if that was true.

What's Happening from Feb. 15 The Dalles Chronicle

New Entries RETIRED TEACHERS: Unit 20, Oregon Retired Teachers Association will meet noon Tuesday, Feb. 19, in the cafeteria at the Columbia Gorge Community College where a faculty representative will speak on the college’s course offerings. Retired school personnel from Sherman, Wasco and Hood River counties are invited to attend. Inquiries may be directed to Unit 20 President Roy Nellermoe at 541-354-1007.

Columbia River system at risk for invasive species

PORTLAND (AP) — Research-ers from Portland State University say the Columbia River has suitable conditions for invasive freshwater mussels to grow if they get a toehold. The researchers told the Northwest Power and Conservation Council Thursday that the water chemistry and temperatures are suitable for quagga and zebra mussels to grow if they get introduced. The mussels have wreaked havoc on docks, dams, and freshwater ecosystems from the Great Lakes to the Southwest, but so far not the Northwest.

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Local veterans may face burn pile risks

Thousands of U.S. combat troops exposed to toxic chemicals from burn pits at military bases in Iraq and Afghanistan could end up with potentially deadly health problems.

Oregon bill aims at malpractice

SALEM — Usually staunch adversaries, doctors and trial lawyers have both gotten behind an Oregon bill creating a new mediation process for patients injured by medical mistakes.

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New Oregon wilderness bill faces uncertain future

GRANTS PASS — Longstanding proposals to protect rivers and forests in Oregon as wilderness areas were reintroduced in Congress on Thursday by Oregon’s two senators.

Thursday, February 14

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Holeman pulls off skiing trifecta

He keeps going and going and going – It is not the Energizer bunny, it is Eli Holeman. The Dalles Wahtonka’s sophomore ski standout scored his third consecutive victory and added the Mount Hood League’s slalom title to his record Saturday on Ski Bowl at Mount Hood Meadows.

For the Record, February 14, 2013

Police, fire, hosptital and lottery reports gathered February 14.

Boehner taking a you-first approach to proposals

WASHINGTON — John Boehner is pulling back. After two stressful years as Washington’s most powerful Republican and a pair of failed, high-profile rounds of budget talks with President Barack Obama — and disappointment over Obama’s re-election — the battle-scarred House speaker has adopted a you-first approach to the Democrat in the White House, his allies who control the Senate and anyone else who wants to work with them.

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Tunisia: birthplace of Jihadists?

TUNIS, Tunisia — The cradle of the Arab Spring is increasingly looking like the birthplace of jihadists. Long before Tunisia ousted its dictator and inspired the North African pro-democracy movement, the small, relatively prosperous country had the more dubious distinction of exporting Islamic militants. Now, as the country wrestles with the creation of a new government after the killing of a liberal opposition leader, experts say the flow of fighters is getting worse.

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World news in brief, February 14

WASHINGTON (AP) — The world must show its resolve in the face of North Korea’s nuclear provocations or risk emboldening Iran, which is under scrutiny over its uranium enrichment program, Secretary of State John Kerry said Wednesday.

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Valentines for Life: Long married couples in NY to share celebration

NEW YORK — Murray and Esther Redlitz fell for each other in the worst of circumstances. The two Holocaust survivors met in Poland while trying to find missing family members after the Russian Army freed their concentration camps at the end of World War II.

Letter to the Editor: Trees and guns

To the editor: Just thought I’d remind people of the full content of the 2nd Amendment. First, though, I’d like to present my creds on using guns. I shot targets with an M16 in the military, with a 22 I popped radio/TV tubes thrown in the river. I’ve driven pick-ups with gun racks, and have butchered out deer on the kitchen table that my Mom bagged. Never did my family or I use an AK 47. That is not a sporting gun. A 30 ought 6 is a sporting gun.

Northwest news in brief

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Three paid signature gatherers apparently committed extensive fraud while collecting support for two Washington initiatives, elections officials said Wednesday.

Timber Counties seek tax hikes for law enforcement

GRANTS PASS — Three timber counties are asking voters to raise their taxes to restore deep cuts to law enforcement forced by the expiration of a longstanding federal subsidy.

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Railroad goes to federal court over Albany log yard

ALBANY (AP) — A railroad company has asked a federal judge to keep the Linn County government from shutting down a business that last fall started loading logs on trains.

Arts and Entertainment calendar

elebrate your inner Cupid with the one (or ones) you love this week. Nearby venues have plenty of “in the mood” music on their marquees to serenade that special someone. Dads (or a suitable surrogate) can take their daughters to the Daddy Daughter Dance this Friday. Or show the whole family how much you love them with popcorn at the free family movie.

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Seventh Day Adventists ponder new home

Pastor Del Griebel is looking on a sewer flood at his church as a somewhat stinky sign from God that The Dalles Seventh Day Adventist Church should consider new operating quarters.

Obama minimum wage plan renews economic debate

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama’s call to raise the minimum wage to $9 an hour and boost it annually to keep pace with inflation is already getting a trial run. Ten states made similar cost-of-living adjustments, including Washington state, where workers earn at least $9.19 an hour, the highest minimum wage in the country.

Social Security head: Program fraying from neglect

WASHINGTON (AP) — Outgoing Social Security Commissioner Michael J. Astrue has some parting shots for Congress, the White House and advocates for seniors. They have all “really walked away from Social Security,” he says, leaving the program “fraying because of inattention to its problems.”

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Pretty Little Angel Eyes

The Harmonaires, a jazz choir from The Dalles Wahtonka High School, have been spreading cheer around town with musical Valentines, including this rendition of “Pretty Little Angel Eyes” in the Chenowith Elementary School front office on Feb. 13. From left to right are Quinn Farquharson, Hannah Lupkes, Madeleine Morgan, Kellina Coy and Kathleen Albrecht. Photo by Jade McDowell

Wednesday, February 13

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A matter of propriety and perception

During a recent city goal-setting session, a pattern emerged. Bill Dick, a member of the Discovery Center’s board, convinced the city council to consider restoring funding for the debt service associated with the center.

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Tribe keeps playoff hopes alive: Eagle Indians seal a 60-51 victory

Needing a win to keep their playoff hopes alive, The Dalles Wahtonka boy’s basketball team fought and battled until the very end against a Pendleton squad that was not willing to give an inch.

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MacFarlane gets Oscar-hosting advice from Crystal

LOS ANGELES — Despite getting advice from Billy Crystal and working as hard as he can to prepare to host the Academy Awards, Seth MacFarlane thinks his hosting gig is a “one-off” and that he’ll be “flayed by the press” no matter what he does.

For the Record from Feb. 13

Police, fire, hospital and lottery reports gathered Feb. 13.

Wold, Pacific Northwest news in brief

HERMISTON (AP) — The Umatilla Chemical Depot will end 180 jobs Thursday as work continues to close the plant that destroyed more than 1 million pounds of chemical agents and munitions.

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Wisconsin scientists help search for alien life

MADISON, Wis. — Scientists at the University of Wisconsin-Madison are helping search for evidence of alien life not by looking into outer space, but by studying some rocks right here on Earth.

What's happening from Feb. 13 issue of The Dalles Chronicle

LASAGNA FEED: Big Brothers Big Sisters benefits from a lasagna feed Friday, Feb. 15, from 5 to 8 p.m. at Grace Baptist Church, 1280 W Jewett Blvd., White Salmon. Cost is $10 for adults, $6 for children (7 and under) and seniors (65 and over). There is also a raffle with prizes donated by local businesses. This fundraiser is hosted by Beneventi’s Pizza in Bingen and Canyon Market in Klickitat. CAKE CONTEST: Deadline to enter the Last Days of Jesus Easter pageant’s cake decorating contest is Friday, Feb. 15. The contest features a $1,000 prize. See www.morgan

What they're saying about State of the Union

Some reaction from members of Congress to the President Barack Obama's State of the Union address Tuesday night:

Analysis: Minimum wage plan a new test for Obama

WASHINGTON (AP) If anything illustrated President Barack Obama's new sense of self-confidence, it was his State of the Union call for an increase in the national minimum wage.

Highlights of Obama's State of the Union address

Highlights of the economic and other proposals President Barack Obama called for in his State of the Union address: *JOBS: Partner with businesses and communities to invest in American-made technologies through a network of Manufacturing Innovation Institutes, three of which Obama said he would create by executive order while asking Congress to create 15 more. Eliminate tax breaks that encourage companies to move jobs outside the U.S., and rewrite the tax code.

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Obama: Nation stronger, GOP should back his plans

WASHINGTON (AP) Uncompromising and politically emboldened, President Barack Obama urged a deeply divided Congress Tuesday night to embrace his plans to use government money to create jobs and strengthen the nation's middle class. He declared Republican ideas for reducing the deficit "even worse" than the unpalatable deals Washington had to stomach during his first term. In his first State of the Union address since winning re-election, Obama conceded economic revival is an "unfinished task," but he claimed clear progress and said he prepared to build on it as he embarks on four more years in office.

Obama: Will Act on Climate, With or Without Congress

President Barack Obama said Tuesday night that he will use his executive powers to enact new policies to fight climate change if Congress does not address the issue. In his fourth State of the Union address, and his first since winning re-election, Obama linked climate change to recent extreme weather events to make his case.

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GOP faults Obama speech for liberalism, hostility

WASHINGTON (AP) Republicans charged Wednesday that President Barack Obama delivered a State of the Union address studded with tired liberal notions and campaign-style hostility and said the speech did little to ease partisan tensions over issues like gigantic budget deficits.

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Obama proposals face quick opposition in Congress

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama set up high-stakes clashes with Republicans over guns, immigration, taxes and climate change in a State of the Union address that showcased his determination to mark his legacy. Republicans urged Obama to get out of campaign mode and offer more than “gimmicks and tax hikes.”

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Redd: Guilty except for insanity

ST. HELENS (AP) — A man charged with killing a mental health worker in May pleaded guilty except for insanity Tuesday and is expected to be sent to the Oregon State Hospital.

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Body is likely fugitive cop’s; license found in burned cabin

BIG BEAR LAKE, Calif. (AP) — As police scoured mountain peaks for days, using everything from bloodhounds to high-tech helicopters, the revenge-seeking ex-cop they wanted was hiding among them, holed up in a vacation cabin across the street from their command post.

Tuesday, February 12

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Medicare to fine hospitals for too many readmissions

WASHINGTON — More than 1 million Americans wind up back in the hospital only weeks after they left for reasons that could have been prevented — a revolving door that for years has seemed impossible to slow.

For the Record Feb. 12, 2013

Police, fire, medical and lottery reports gathered Feb. 12, 2013.

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North Korea conducts third nuclear test

PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) — Defying U.N. warnings, North Korea on Tuesday conducted its third nuclear test in the remote, snowy northeast, taking a crucial step toward its goal of building a bomb small enough to be fitted on a missile capable of striking the United States. North Korea said the atomic test was merely its “first response” to what it called U.S. threats, and said it will continue with unspecified “second and third measures of greater intensity” if Washington maintains its hostility.

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Swimmers Hernandez, Nelson off to state

On the biggest stage in front of their contemporaries, The Dalles Wahtonka swimmers Erin Nelson and Mika Hernandez both knocked it out of the park. This dynamic duo grabbed top honors to go along with personal records, while Nelson completed the trifecta with a district record at Saturday’s 5A Columbia River Conference district swimming championships at the Hood River Aquatic Center.

Wash. man, 82, says he’s OK after tackling suspect

LONGVIEW, Wash. (AP) — An 82-year-old Washington state man says he was a little sore but otherwise OK after tackling and helping police catch a felon one-third his age. Terry Miracle, of Longview, was weeding in his garden Friday when heard a commotion. It was police chasing a burglary suspect identified as 27-year-old Morgan Perry Bluehorse.

Letter to the Editor: Taxes required

To the editor: Maybe I have just lived too long, but historically, a balanced package to avoid the so-called “fiscal cliff” and “sequester” problems, lower unemployment, and eventually reduce the federal deficit would include considerably higher taxes on the richest Americans and much less near-term spending cuts than any of the current proposals.

Letter to the Editor: Call problems

To the editor: Although telecommunications services are vital to all Oregonians, many rural Oregon landline telephone customers no longer take the ability to make and receive telephone calls for granted.

Fugitive ex-LA cop charged with murder of officer

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Police are now investigating more than 1,000 tips from the public in the search for the fired officer suspected of a deadly revenge plot against the Los Angeles Police Department.

Slain ex-SEAL honored by thousands

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Surrounded by her husband’s military friends, one who offered a glove to wipe away her tears, Taya Kyle stood in front of the flag-draped coffin, her voice trembling as she described to a crowd of thousands what her husband, ex-Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle, meant to his family, friends and country.

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Democrats and Republicans clash during gun hearing

WASHINGTON (AP) — A top Democrat says the toll that gun violence is taking on families makes it clear that Congress needs to pass more firearms restrictions. At a hearing Tuesday of a Senate Judiciary subcommittee, Illinois Sen. Richard Durbin said it is time for lawmakers to act. He said he believed steps like requiring background checks for all gun purchases would be constitutional, and he said current laws have too many gaps in them.

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Soccer faces epic fight against match-fixing

ZURICH (AP) — Soccer is falling under a cloud of suspicion as never before, sullied by a multibillion-dollar web of match-fixing that is corrupting increasingly larger parts of the world’s most popular sport.

What's Happening from Feb. 12 Chronicle

SENIOR CLASS: Chocolate-covered cherries being sold by The TDW Class of 2013 are still available and can be purchased from any member of the class or from Kristal Corey in the main office. They come in one-pound bags at $10 each. Sales support the TDW Senior Class of 2013 and their drug and alcohol-free year-end party. CHINOOK SEASON: There will be no spring chinook season on the Deschutes River. Fisheries managers have announced that the popular spring chinook fishery will not open in 2013. Deschutes River Anglers can expect fall chinook season in August. February 12 PANCAKE SUPPER: First United Methodist Church, 301 E 11th St. in The Dalles, is inviting the community to a Feb. 12 Shrove Tuesday pancake supper from 5 to 7 p.m. Donations will be accepted to send youth to a weekend retreat later in the month. For more information, call 541-296-4675. DEMOCRATS MEETING: Wasco County Democrats monthly meeting will be Feb. 12 at 7 p.m. in the library conference room. Come and discuss this year’s events. February 14 VALENTINE’S DAY: In honor of its patrons, the Hood River Aquatic Center will host its 12th Annual Complimentary Pancake Breakfast Thursday, Feb.14, from 7:45 to 10:15 a.m. in the Hood River Aquatic Center party room.

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Retiring Pope Benedict XVI in uncharted territory

VATICAN CITY — For months, construction crews have been renovating a four-story building attached to a monastery on the northern edge of the Vatican gardens where nuns would live for a few years at a time in cloister. Only a handful of Vatican officials knew it would one day be Pope Benedict XVI’s retirement home.

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Air Guard F-15s to train more in Eastern Oregon

Two Wasco County officials recently caught a ride to an Oregon Air National Guard base in Portland but their mode of transport wasn’t a car or van, it was a C-23B+ Super Sherpa, a military plane that transports personnel and cargo.

Redd, formerly of The Dalles, heads to court in Saint Helens today

ST. HELENS (AP) — A plea and sentence hearing was scheduled today after press deadlines in St. Helens for a man accused of killing a mental health worker. Brent Redd had pleaded not guilty in the May 2012 stabbing of Jennifer Warren. She was killed while making a medicine delivery to his apartment in St. Helens.

Monday, February 11

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Dufur alumnus returns to inspire students

A motivational poster on the wall of the hospital gave Jake French words to live by after the accident that left him in a wheelchair: Life is 10 percent what happens to you and 90 percent how you react to it.

Pair pulls man from icy waters

Two young heroes employed at the Best Western Hood River Inn took fast action at the Columbia River on Feb. 7 around 1:25 p.m., pulling a 77-year-old man to safety from frigid river water.

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Brophy helps veterans with the aftermath

Disabled at 29, Marine has experience to share

US Marine Corps Capt. Daniel Brophy walked for the last time on Feb. 23, 1969, the day his body was broken by a .50 caliber bullet — but the warrior spirit that took him to Vietnam has enabled him to continue living with purpose from a wheelchair.

Saturday, February 9

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Senior night dominance for T-Dub wrestling

In his final wrestling dual, The Dalles Wahtonka senior Junior Fernandez could hardly come to grips with the fact that his four-year ride is over. TDW wrapped up its regular season with a pair of dual victories over Jefferson and Franklin in a PIL/Columbia River Conference dual on senior night at The Dalles Middle School.

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Backcountry yurts are a winter haven

IN THE BOISE MOUNTAINS, Idaho (AP) — Daybreak’s rose-colored light glows over the snowy mountain peaks surrounding Stargaze Yurt in the Boise Mountains. It’s minus 6 outside, and the January air is so cold and clear it crystallizes and sparkles in the sunlight. Each dawn in one of the Idaho City backcountry yurts brings amazing winter experiences, like the changing colors of a rose, pink and purple sunrise in snow country, the ultimate silence of the dead of winter and fresh animal tracks in silky snow.

Hunt for suspected shooter centers in mountains

BIG BEAR LAKE, Calif. (AP) — More than 100 officers fanned out again at daybreak in the snow-covered San Bernardino Mountains, resuming the search for the former Los Angeles police officer suspected of going on a deadly rampage to get back at those he blamed for ending his career.

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APNewsBreak: Flaws found in US missile shield

WASHINGTON (AP) — Secret Defense Department studies cast doubt on whether a multibillion-dollar missile defense system planned for Europe will ever be able to protect the U.S. from Iranian missiles as intended, congressional investigators say.

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Blizzard wallops Northeast with two feet of snow

BOSTON — A behemoth storm packing hurricane-force wind gusts and blizzard conditions swept through the Northeast overnight, where more than 650,000 homes and businesses in the densely populated region lost power, roads were impassable and New Englanders awoke Saturday to more than 2 feet of snow.

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World news in brief, Feb. 10, 2013

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama will foc us his State of the Union address on boosting job creation and economic growth at a time of high unemployment, underscoring the degree to which the economy could threaten his ability to pursue second-term priorities such as gun control, immigration policy and climate change. Obama also may use Tuesday’s prime-time address before a joint session of Congress to announce the next steps for concluding the U.S.-led war in Afghanistan by the end of 2014.

What's happening, from Feb. 10 Chronicle

Announce your public, nonprofit activities here, 75 words or less. E-mail to tdchron@thedalleschronicle.com or fax to 541-298-1365 or drop off at the Chronicle, 315 Federal St., PO Box 1910, The Dalles OR 97058. New Entries VALENTINE’S DINNER: American Legion Post 19 will host a Valentine’s Day dinner and dance. They will be serving pork loin with all the trimmings and a glass of champagne. Cost for a single is $8, couples $15. Music will be by Les Vaughn. Donations for music are greatly appreciated.

Good behavior pays off

SEATTLE (AP) — To Laura King, her three children were acting normal while enjoying dinner at an Italian restaurant in their hometown in Washington state. But staffers of the restaurant Sogno di Vino in Poulsbo were so impressed with her children’s table manners during their Feb. 1 dinner that they thanked her kids and gave the family of five a bowl of ice cream. It wasn’t until King got home that she noticed a $4 “well behaved kids” discount on her receipt to cover the dessert. A friend posted a picture of the receipt on the website Reddit, and the story took off.

After early start, worst of flu season may be over

NEW YORK — The worst of the flu season appears to be over. The number of states reporting intense or widespread illnesses dropped again last week, and in a few states very little flu was going around, health officials said Friday.

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When the jury letter arrives, it’s your duty

When Mohamed Mohamud was accused of trying to detonate a car bomb at Portland’s annual Christmas tree lighting event, it wasn’t the FBI agents who arrested him, the attorneys who prosecuted him or the judge who presided over his case who ultimately decided whether he would be convicted.

Letters to the editor: Chronicle guidelines

EDITORIAL GUIDELINES The Dalles Chronicle welcomes letters. These should be signed, accurate, free from libel, and include the writer’s name, telephone number, street address (which will not be printed) and city of residence for verification. Those without complete identification of the writer will not be published, the most common reason letters are not published. (If your letter hasn’t been published, call 541-506-4601.) 400 words

Letter to the editor: How charitable?

To the editor: In response to Dorothy Hill’s letter of Tuesday, Feb. 5, when I saw the big shiny Goodwill semi sitting in the Albertsons parking lot, I smiled at their logo: “Your donations improve lives.” (I may not have that exactly right.) My thought was, whose lives do they really improve?

Feb. 10 in history

Today is Sunday, Feb. 10, the 41st day of 2013. There are 324 days left in the year. This is the Chinese New Year of the Snake. Today’s Highlight in History:

Public meeting for the week of Feb. 10

The Dalles Monday – The Dalles City Council, 5:30 p.m., City Hall Council Chambers, 313 Court St., The Dalles. Agenda: public hearing regarding supplemental budget for current fiscal year; discussion regarding proposed changes to infill development policies. Wasco County Monday – Wasco County

Zoo assumes legal rights to Rose-Tu’s Lily

PORTLAND, Ore. — The Oregon Zoo has it in writing: Lily the elephant is here to stay. In an agreement finalized today, the zoo assumed legal ownership of Rose-Tu’s new calf from Have Trunk Will Travel, the California-based company that had previously held rights to the young elephant.

Friday, February 8

Sports: tryouts and signups

Oregon Select holding tryouts The Oregon Select baseball program is holding its annual tryouts from 7-9 p.m. this Saturday, Feb. 9, at The Yard Baseball Academy in Beaverton for interested players for the classifications ranging from 9U to 17U as well as the 12U Elite Cooperstown squad. Birthdate is determined by your age on April 30, 2013. The tryout fee is set for $10. Schedule consists of three or four highly competitive tournaments starting in March. For more information, dmerisman@gmail.com or fax signup sheet from www.leaguelineup.com /oregon2005 to 866-374-6004.

No spring chinook season on the Deschutes

THE DALLES (ODFW) – Fisheries managers have announced that the popular spring chinook fishery on the Deschutes River will not open in 2013. According to Rod French, district biologist with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, managers are predicting fewer than 650 wild spring chinook will return to the Warm Springs River to spawn.

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Tuning it up on the mats: TDW wrestling team preparesw for regional tourney

Coming off a 72-12 loss to Hermiston on Jan. 31, The Dalles Wahtonka wrestling team went back to work Thursday night in a Columbia River Conference clash with Hood River Valley. The host Eagles landed plenty of pins, decisions and forfeits in a 70-10 victory in a varsity duel at Hood River High School.

Seattle mayor ends police drone efforts

SEATTLE — Seattle’s mayor on Thursday ordered the police department to abandon its plan to use drones after residents and privacy advocates protested. Mayor Mike McGinn said the department will not use two small drones it obtained through a federal grant. The unmanned aerial vehicles will be returned to the vendor, he said.

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Train crunches semi truck in Stevenson

STEVENSON, Wash. (AP) — Officials say a freight train collided with a tractor-trailer rig that landed on rail tracks in the Columbia River Gorge after veering off Washington state Highway 14 and going over an embankment. While the Washington state Department of Transportation tweeted that the “train peeled back the semi-trailer like a can of sardines,” no one was injured in the Thursday afternoon crash east of Stevenson.

For the record, Feb. 8, 2013

Fire, police, hospital and lottery information gathered Feb. 8, 2013.

Church news in brief

Roundup of faith related events

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World news in brief, Feb. 8

European officials agree to budget BRUSSELS (AP) — European Union leaders have agreed to a budget worth €960 billion ($1.3 trillion), a significantly reduced sum that represents the first decrease in a budget in the union’s history.

China: Year of the Snake may bite

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — As Indiana Jones might say: Why did it have to be the Year of the Snake?

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Mandela sisters star in TV show

NEW YORK — The newest reality television show is in some ways like any other: mother and daughters, sibling rivalry, family gossip and talk of Big Grandpa, who is very strict but loves it when his great-grandchildren are around making a racket. But that’s where the twist comes in: Big Grandpa is Nelson Mandela, the anti-apartheid legend.

Sherman and Wasco County cattlemen discuss merger

Let the chips fly and dining commence on March 6 at the Imperial River Company as Sherman and Wasco County Cattlemen’s Associations meet once again to discuss the merging of their two groups.

Pleasurable parenting topic of training series

Learning new parenting skills can help enrich the lives of parents and their children. The Next Door, Inc., is offering skills training in the series, “Make Parenting a Pleasure,” at Colonel Wright Elementary School in The Dalles. Classes run Thursdays, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., between Feb. 28 and May 23. The classes are described as a “fun, family-oriented series for series for parents, grandparents, caregivers and their children from birth to age 8.

Farnham concert rescheduled

Scheduling conflicts have forced the Mid-Columbia Community Concert Association to reschedule the Jason Farnham concert to Monday, March 25, at Gateway Presbyterian Church at 7 p.m. More information on the community concert schedule is available online .

Senators seek deal on gun-sale background checks

WASHINGTON (AP) — A bipartisan quartet of senators, including two National Rifle Association members and two with “F’’ ratings from the potent firearms lobby, are quietly trying to find a compromise on expanding the requirement for gun-sale background checks.

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City eyes stabilization of East Scenic Drive roadway

The City of The Dalles is taking steps to shore up an unstable embankment along the ridge of East Scenic Drive that is in a landslide zone.

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Small schools exceed diploma rate

Small rural schools often get overlooked in the discussion on education reform, but they frequently outperform their larger counterparts.

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Tuff Wash wants to clean up in the gorge

Alex DeVlaeminck and his new Tuff Wash business are in the super-clean business. DeVlaeminck runs a mobile pressure-washing and steam-cleaning business in The Dalles.

Thursday, February 7

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Serene scenic

A BARGE moving down the Columbia River Feb. 6 passes between an island offshore of Oregon's Memaloose Park and the Washington shore. Photographed from Chamberlain Lake Rest Area on Highway 14, looking west.

For the record, Tuesday Feb. 7, 2013

Record for Feb. 2, including fire, police, hospital and lottery reports.

BLM holds back part of timber county payments

GRANTS PASS — A federal agency is holding back 10 percent of a special payment to timber counties in Oregon in case federal budget cuts known as sequestration go through, posing another hardship for rural counties already struggling to pay for law enforcement and other services.

Five arrested in Goldendale, face drug charges

GOLDENDALE — Five people were arrested Feb. 5 on illegal drug charges — and theft of a fire truck — related to Klickitat County Sheriff’s raids at two Goldendale-area residences.

Heart Truth run results

2013 Go Red Run/Walk on Feb. 2 at Kiwanis Pocket Park in TD 3K Results 1. Kyle Chaffin...........................25:45 2. Nicole Chaffin.......................25:55 3. Justin Chaffin........................25:57 4. Zain Hartsock........................27:00 5. Heather Hartsock..................27:00 6. Addie Case...........................28:49 7. Mark Chambers....................29:01

States set chinook and sturgeon seasons

PORTLAND (ODFW) – Fishery managers from Oregon and Washington set spring chinook salmon and sturgeon fishing seasons for the Columbia and Willamette rivers today during a joint state hearing.

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Senior swimmers poised

Every senior on The Dalles Wahtonka swim team now has his or her moment to shine on the biggest stage. It is district time this Saturday at the Hood River Aquatics Center and now they have one last opportunity to earn their marks

Bills would limit Oregon public records law

SALEM — Want to find out if a particular motel has bedbugs?...Who won the lottery?...How much a retired public employee is earning from a pension? Some in the Oregon Legislature want to keep that information confidential, and several bills would cut off public access to those records.

Letter to the editor: Shrewd strategy

To the editor: At the time I thought Mr. Obama’s strategy was a mistake, but I was wrong. By appearing constantly on entertainment programs — late night comedians, daytime talk shows and always ready to rub elbows with the Hollywood elite, our commander in chief certainly knew what he was doing.

Letter to the editor: Selfish and greedy

To the editor: The economy broke to half in my dump truck business in 2007 and has pretty much stayed there. The doubling of water bills is indicative of the fox guarding the henhouse.

Letter to the editor: Gun responsibilities

To the editor: Like other citizens, gun owners are troubled by the level of gun violence. They would like to see an end to the senseless deaths caused by the misuse of firearms, but question whether new legislation will significantly reduce gun violence in a country with over 300 million existing weapons.

Letter to the editor: Sign of the times

To the editor: I am responding to the letter in the Jan. 31 issue concerning guns and murders.

Letter to the editor: Kudos, Sherman

It is with great enthusiasm that we send kudos and congratulations to the Sherman County School District. They have recently received word of their successful grant application from the competitive Farm to School and School Garden award of $1,087.

California nuclear plant denies knowing about faulty equipment

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The utility that runs the troubled San Onofre nuclear power plant on the California coast sharply denied Thursday that it was aware of equipment problems linked to a 2012 tube break that released a trace of radiation.

A year before Olympics, Putin is not pleased

SOCHI, Russia (AP) — A year before the 2014 Winter Olympics are to begin, President Vladimir Putin has demanded that a senior member of the Russian Olympic Committee be fired, apparently due to cost overruns in host city Sochi.

Afghan boys from nominated film to walk red carpet

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — Fawad Mohammadi has spent half his life peddling maps and dictionaries to foreigners on a street of trinket shops in Kabul. Now the 14-year-old Afghan boy with bright green eyes is getting ready for a trip down the red carpet at the Oscars. It will also be his first time out of the country and his first time on a plane.

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Schools get creative to bring in more police

­CASTLE ROCK, Colo. (AP) — Stunned by the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings in Connecticut, police and school officials in one Colorado county felt they had to do something to reassure students. Their solution: Have police officers on patrol do their arrest reports and other paperwork in school parking lots, rather than simply pulling off the road or returning to the police station.

Lawmakers to get drone report before CIA hearing

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama’s choice to head the CIA faces a Senate Intelligence Committee confirmation hearing just hours after lawmakers are expected to receive a classified report providing the rationale for drone strikes targeting Americans working with al-Qaida overseas.

Radioactive scraps found at Hanford

RICHLAND, Wash. (AP) — Hanford cleanup workers found three broken pieces of uranium fuel rods in the sludge of storage basin.

DA focuses on sole murder case

Wasco County District Attorney Eric Nisley was able to clear a large stack of files off the left corner of his desk with the unexpected fatal heart attack of murder suspect Roark David Smith in mid-January.

Hongs reflect on tragedy

The family of Patti Hong, 46, and her son Randy Hong, 23, slain Feb. 25, 2009, at their own west The Dalles home, were not emotionally ready in January to comment on the death of the accused killer but issued written statements Wednesday.

Sign up for a hunter education class

SALEM, Ore.— Students interested in getting certified in hunter education by this fall’s hunting season should sign up for a class now. Classes are limited and most are scheduled from spring through late summer.

Wednesday, February 6

Celebrage Oregon's 154TH birthday

News Release from: Oregon Historical Society CELEBRATE OREGON'S 154TH BIRTHDAY WITH CAKE AND FREE ADMISSION AT THE OREGON HISTORICAL SOCIETY

Wildflower hikes planned

NEWS FLASH--Wildflowers are in bloom already this year! We are happy to report Grass widows and Salt and Pepper Lomatium have been spotted on both Catherine Creek trails and Dalles Mountain. It will be a few weeks yet before the blossoms appear in quantity and get larger in size.

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Fishing, hunting and wildlife viewing opportunities detailed

ODFW report details fishing, hunting and wildlife viewing opportunities in Oregon's central and Columbia River zones.

For the record, Wednesday Feb. 6, 2013

Fire, police, hospital and lottery reports.

Flying ace and legislator Ken Jernstedt dies

Oregon’s first flying ace died Monday at age 95. Hood River’s Ken Jernstedt Sr. was a pilot, community leader, father and businessman. His life was a long, full and adventurous one. Piloting the famed Flying Tiger aircraft over Burma in 1941-42, he shot down more than 10 Japanese airplanes, and that was just part of his World War II service.

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Internet cat stars scratch the fame’s surface

NEW YORK — They frolic in empty boxes and stick their heads under faucet streams of water. They dance on tippy toes and fly through the air with Pop-Tarts. They play piano wearing little frocks and get tickled to distraction to the delight of millions on YouTube.

Lifestyle, pop culture drive dog popularity

LOS ANGELES — Help wanted: One trained, easygoing, low-maintenance dog that will work for next to nothing. It was the classified ad that Matthew VanFossan wrote in his head after going blind.

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Still on a hot streak: Eli Holeman wins, TDW ski squads tally second place

So far this season, The Dalles Wahtonka skier Eli Holeman is having a breakout campaign. In just the third race of 2013-2013, Holeman captured his second win overall by dominating a field of 36 other Mount Hood League skiing participants in a giant slalom event Saturday on Rams Head at Mount Hood Meadows. Holeman’s win, with a final mark of one minute, 7.07 seconds, put him in an elite class in the annals of TDW history. He is the first boy’s competitor to win a GS since the late 1990s.

Mayor names committee members

Mayor Steve Lawrence has assigned city councilors and citizens to the following committees for 2013:

Report: Family and medical leave law working

WASHINGTON — Just 16 percent of eligible workers took time off under the Family and Medical Leave Act last year to recover from an illness, care for a new child or tend to a sick relative, according to a government report released on the law’s 20th anniversary Tuesday. Most employers said the absences did not hamper productivity or profitability.

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World news in brief, Feb. 6

Cat Joins Monopoly The newest Monopoly token, a cat, rests on a Boardwalk deed next to a die and houses at Hasbro Inc. headquarters, in Pawtucket, R.I., Feb. 5. Voting on Facebook determined that the cat would replace the iron token. AP Photo/Steven Senne

Brennan, once stung by waterboarding, now opposes

WASHINGTON (AP) — John Brennan, now President Barack Obama’s nominee to be CIA director, sat quietly around a conference table at the agency’s headquarters in Langley, Va., during briefings about the capture and waterboarding of key al-Qaida operative Abu Zubaydah. Former and current U.S. intelligence officials who were part of those briefings say Brennan, then deputy executive director of the CIA’s administrative arm, did not raise objections to the interrogation practices in those forums. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to discuss the top-secret meetings publicly.

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Bones of contention: Cities fight over Richard III

LONDON (AP) — The discovery of King Richard III under a parking lot in the English city of Leicester thrilled history buffs around the world. But the news that they had been proved authentic “beyond a reasonable doubt” meant a winter of discontent for the rival city of York, and now the two are doing battle over the royal bones. Officials in Leicester say the monarch, who was unceremoniously buried without a coffin 528 years ago, will be re-interred with kingly dignity in the city’s cathedral.

What's happening from Feb. 6 Chronicle

Announce your public, nonprofit activities here, 75 words or less. E-mail to tdchron@thedalleschronicle.com or fax to 541-298-1365 or drop off at the Chronicle, 315 Federal St., PO Box 1910, The Dalles OR 97058. New Entries

Kiwanis Club schedules Feb. meetings

KIWANIS CLUB: The Dalles Kiwanis Club meetings are held every Thursday noon at Spooky’s. Visitors are welcome. Speakers include:

‘Amazing Oregon’ theme for ag banquet Feb. 21

Amazing Oregon is the theme for the Wasco County Soil and Water Conservation District annual meeting and ag banquet, Thursday, Feb. 21, at the Columbia Gorge Discovery Center.

FDA warns of fake drug

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Food and Drug Administration is warning doctors about another counterfeit version of the cancer drug Avastin distributed in the U.S., the third case involving the best-selling Roche drug in the past year.

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Mayor eyes role and goals for City of The Dalles

The Dalles Mayor Steve Lawrence asked city attorney Gene Parker for a point of clarification about his new role at Monday’s goal setting session.

District 21 schools target graduation issues

Sixty percent of North Wasco County School District 21 high school seniors graduated on time with a regular diploma in 2012, and 12 percent more received a modified diploma or other alternative.

Postal Service to cut Saturday mail to trim costs

WASHINGTON — Apparently trying an end-run around an unaccommodating Congress, the financially struggling U.S. Postal Service says it will stop delivering mail on Saturdays but continue to disburse packages six days a week. In an announcement scheduled for later Wednesday, the service is expected to say the Saturday mail cutback would begin in August and could save $2 billion annually.

Tuesday, February 5

Baseball and softball upmpires needed

UMPIRES NEEDED: The Mid-Columbia Umpire Association (MCUA) is looking for a few good men and women to umpire baseball & softball games in the upcoming 2013 High School Season. The MCUA covers games for local high schools in the Mid-Columbia Area.

Record for Jan. 4, 2013

Medical, fire and police reports from Feb. 5 Chronicle

Re-evaluate Urban Renewal, sewer rates

To the editor: I would like to express my disagreement with the council’s passage of the sewer increase, but I do applaud two council members (Tim McGlothlin and Linda Miller) who were not in favor of the increase. If memory serves me, I believe we had a water and sewer increase not too long ago. I, like Mr. Nelson, agree this new increase would definitely place an extra cost burden on our low-income and fixed-income citizens. I also agree the statistics from the engineering firm based out of Portland were way out of line in their projected figures. I have lived in The Dalles for 35 years and the population only creased by 3,000.

Glad for Goodwill

To the editor: I think it’s going to be nice having the Goodwill come to The Dalles. They also do a lot for people who really need help. We have a lot of folks who need a helping hand once in a while, but more that seem to need it all the time. Hopefully, in a few months, the farmers will be needing help.

Keep dancing

To all of the area dancers that have attended Neva and Bill Reid’s Social Dance/Social Ballroom classes over the last seven years, we would like to say “thank you” for joining us. We have had a wonderful time sharing many dance rhythms with you and hope you have learned a little something along with having a good time. Unfortunately, it has become time for us to hang up our social dance shoes.

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World news in Brief, Jan. 5

Arrival of the Modern Mind A sculpture of an adult female bison worked from a large piece of mammoth tusk dates at least 21,000 years old, discovered at Zaraysk, Osetr Valley, Russia, is seen on display in an exhibition ‘Ice Age Art : arrival of the modern mind’ at the British Museum in London, Feb. 5. The exhibition present masterpieces create from the last Ice Age. AP Photo/Sang Tan

Government sues Standard & Poor’s

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. government accused Standard & Poor’s of inflating ratings on mortgage investments to boost its bottom line, taking aim at a key player in the run-up to the financial crisis.

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US milatarizing its drug war in Latin America

The crew members aboard the USS Underwood could see through their night goggles what was happening on the fleeing go-fast boat: Someone was dumping bales. When the Navy guided-missile frigate later dropped anchor in Panamanian waters on that sunny August morning, Ensign Clarissa Carpio, a 23-year-old from San Francisco, climbed into the inflatable dinghy with four unarmed sailors and two Coast Guard officers like herself, carrying light submachine guns. It was her first deployment, but Carpio was ready for combat. Fighting drug traffickers was precisely what she’d trained for.

OSP lists freeway driver safety tips

Oregon State Police Trooper Michael Holloran said Monday’s wrong-way accident involving three vehicles on Interstate 84 east of The Dalles is an example of why motorists need to be watching ahead while traveling.

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Oregon Lawmakers kick off 2013 session

SALEM — The Oregon Legislature kicked off its five-month session Monday, beginning work on a new two-year budget and dozens of other initiatives.

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Kaseberg enters "The Zone" to lead Sherman win

Only a select few know what it is like to be in the zone. Sherman sophomore Austin Kaseberg can add his name to that esteemed mix.

DUII definition expansion beyond alcohol proposed

SALEM (AP) — Oregon lawmakers are considering a bill that would expand the definition of drunken driving to include prescription drugs and synthetic substances that mimic drugs.

The Dalles man struck while crossing freeway

Oregon State Police troopers are continuing the investigation into a Friday evening crash on Interstate 84 that resulted in the injury of a pedestrian.

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Wrong-way driver crashes on I-84

Oregon State police say an 88-year-old wrong-way driver was responsible for a multiple vehicle crash Monday morning that closed the eastbound lanes of Interstate 84 for about 90 minutes.

Saturday, February 2

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They've found their match with Big Brother, Big Sister

A six-year-old boy wants to learn how to swim but has no one to teach him. An eight-year-old boy has been waiting two years for someone to do outdoor activities with him. A six-year-old girl who is “very enthusiastic and full of life” needs to spend more time outside her tiny apartment. Those children, along with about 25 more, are on the waiting list for the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Columbia Gorge. About 72 kids in Wasco County, Hood River and part of Klickitat County are currently being served.

Public meetings for the week beginning Jan. 5

Government meetings for the week beginning Monday, Jan. 5, 2013.

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Birding guide shows stops for freeway viewers

MEDFORD (AP) — Ashland birder Harry Fuller steps out of his car with binoculars in hand, ready to scope a field near the Medford airport for one of the Rogue Valley’s more unusual winter visitors.

Oregon man says IRS agent coerced sex

EUGENE (AP) — An Oregon man has filed a lawsuit against an IRS agent with whom he had sex, claiming he was coerced into the relationship because the woman showed up at his door “provocatively attired” and threatened him with a tax penalty.

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For the blind, group offers a place to turn to

SALEM (AP) — At the talk of white canes and cane signals, and crossing streets, Terry Chapman is reduced to tears. It’s too much. At this moment, it’s too much. “I’m very timid and frightened, and I’ve never been that way in my life and I find myself lost,” she says, holding tight to a tall wooden staff that her husband, Bob, carved for her.

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No. 8 Tribe makes a statement in The Dalles

With the memory of a 51-28 loss to Pendleton still fresh on their minds, No. 8 The Dalles Wahtonka responded in resounding fashion. And defense was the name of the game.

Critics skeptical of US ‘compassion’ for mustangs

RENO, Nev. (AP) — The U.S. Bureau of Land Management is issuing new policy directives emphasizing “compassion and concern” for wild horses on federal lands in the West, in response to a growing public outcry over alleged abuse during roundups of thousands of mustangs in recent years. Federal laws protecting wild horses since the 1970s require the government to treat them humanely when culling overpopulated herds to reduce harm to public rangeland.

Letter to the editor: Veterinary hospital great

To the editor: My family and I want to say that the staff at Columbia Veterinary Hospital are amazing. We had just suffered the loss of our deaf Persian cat who had chronic health issues since he was born. Not only was the prior doctor (Dr. Will Nunn) able to save his life at a very young age but the new owner of the practice (Dr. Cynthia Lindsey) has gone above and beyond the call of duty to help with him and when the time came and the most humane thing to do became the only option, Dr. Lindsey held him while he fell asleep which is far from the call of duty. The Staff always showed compassion and understanding throughout the past with not just our recent loss but with all our babies.

Letter to the editor: HAL wonderful

To the editor: I recently had the wonderful experience of adopting a dog from Home At Last. I went shopping there and believe me it wasn’t hard to find just the right companion for me.

Letter to the editor: 1,022

One Thousand Twenty-two. That is how many people in these United States that have died to gun violence as of Jan. 22, 2013, a little over a month since Sandy Hook. This does not include the many who have died on the streets of Chicago in the last week.

Letter to the editor: Hypocrisy

To the editor: As a resident of The Dalles and someone that lives downtown in the Commodore II apartments, I have noticed some hypocrisy.

NOAA reports January is colder than normal

Temperatures at The Dalles airport averaged slightly colder than normal in January, according to preliminary data received by NOAA’s National Weather Service in Pendleton.

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An end to Winters bite?

PUNXSUTAWNEY, Pa. (AP) — An end to winter’s bitter cold will come soon, according to Pennsylvania’s famous groundhog.

Sage grouse worries Eastern Oregon ranchers

GRANTS PASS — Hoping to keep sage grouse, at right, from the endangered species list, ranchers in Eastern Oregon are working on a first-in-the-nation deal that would lay out voluntary steps to reduce the harm to sage grouse on 10 million acres of federal grazing lands. “The livestock industry knows this is an important issue, and wants to be in position to somewhat control our destiny,” said John O’Keefe, a Warner Valley rancher and sage grouse coordinator for the Oregon Cattlemen’s Association.

Investigation continues into serious injury accident

The Dalles man LifeFlighted ot Portland

Oregon State Police (OSP) troopers are continuing the investigation into Friday evening's serious injury pedestrian-involved crash in the westbound lanes of Interstate 84 in The Dalles. The name of the injured pedestrian is being released in this update.

Friday, February 1

Northwest growers expect gains in China market

As any good economist can tell you, one of the biggest emerging markets for U.S. goods can be found halfway around the world — in China.

On the record, Feb. 1

Police, fire, medical records and lottery, gathered Feb. 1, 2013.

Adding some bite to its bark: Sherman using forfeit as motivation

In a span of 36 hours, the Sherman Huskies went from one game back of second place in the Big Sky Conference after a 77-68 win over South Wasco County to sole possession of third place, two games behind the Redsides. The reason?

Faith news in brief, Feb. 1

News in brief from the Faith page.

U.S. families wait for adoptions

NEW YORK (AP) — The boy, named Vladimir, is 5½ years old, struggles at learning to count and draw, and lives in an orphanage in Kyrgyzstan. His would-be parents in New York have had just five brief visits since they signed on to adopt him in 2008, yet they refuse to abandon the quest.

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US limited in N. African fight

WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States is struggling to confront an uptick in threats from the world’s newest jihadist hot spot with limited intelligence and few partners to help as the Obama administration weighs how to keep Islamic extremists in North Africa from jeopardizing national security without launching war.

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A neighbor both near and far

What’s that smudge up in the sky? Say hello to our closest neighbor — only 2.9 million light years away! The Andromeda Galaxy, M31, is at the same time the nearest major galaxy to our neck of the woods, and the most distant object readily visible to the naked eye. M31 is often considered a replica of our own galaxy, the “Milky Way.”

Gallery seeks artists

WILD ART: The Columbia Art Gallery in Hood River is looking for artists who have the sense of adventure to explore one of the region’s federally designated wilderness areas. Eighteen artists will be selected for this project by a jury of art professionals. Those chosen will visit one of the following: Indian Heaven, Trapper Creek or Mt. Adams in Washington, and Oregon’s Mark O. Hatfield, Mt. Hood and Badger Creek wilderness areas.

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Main Street revises plan to fund marketing

The Dalles Main Street Steering Committee has revised its proposal to generate funding for marketing purposes by taxing downtown properties.

Oregon car-bomb suspect guilty of terrorism

PORTLAND (AP) — Three hours before they handed down a sentence that could put an Oregon man in prison for life, deliberating jurors sent a note to a trial judge with a question.

Suicide bombing at US Embassy in Turkey kills 2

ANKARA, Turkey — A suicide bomber detonated an explosive Friday in front of the U.S. Embassy in Ankara, killing himself and a guard at the entrance gate, officials said.

Signups set for Heart Truth run

Signups are open for the annual 3k, 5k and 10k Heart Truth run/walk scheduled for 10 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 2, at Kiwanis Pocket Park on Klindt Dr. Cost is $20 with a shirt and $10 without a shirt on the day of event.

Country dances begin

Feb. 9 - Second Saturday Country Dance starts with a potluck at 5:30 p.m. this month, dance lessons begin promptly at 7 p.m., all ages, admission $6 for Mid-Columbia Folklore Society members, $7 for nonmembers, $1 for youths and students, bring a treat to share, Rockford Community Grange, 4262 Barrett Drive, Hood River, 541-352-7550 or 541-386-5771

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Brewer’s Grade is new name for local band

After performing to audiences in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and California for more than a decade, the country music group long known as “Unwound” has made the decision to change the band name to Brewer’s Grade. The new name will be the first and likely most drastic, of many changes that will begin to roll out in the coming weeks and months.

"The Blues" art exhibit Feb.1-24

Feb. 1-24 – “The Blues,” exhibit, opening reception during First Friday, 6-8 p.m., Columbia Center for the Arts, 215 Cascade Ave., Hood River, 541-387-8877, ext. 117, www.columbiaarts.org

Chronicle archive and old issues available online

Recent stories from The Dalles Chronicle remain available at the links below. The News Bank archive allows users to search for and print recently published news articles. A selection of the earliest historic issues of the Chronicle can be found at the Oregon Newspapers site at the University of Oregon.