Statesman Journal from Salem, Oregon on March 30, 1996 · Page 13
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Statesman Journal from Salem, Oregon · Page 13

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Salem, Oregon
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Saturday, March 30, 1996
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Page 13
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STATESMAN JOURNAL SATURDAY March 30, Salem, Oregon Metro Editor Richard Aguirre 399-6739 INSIDE IB Closeup: Obituaries: Business: Decisions for the canyon T7" c cP . ; J - lit I i . i II X V. f - N ',1.:'Jrv:j 1 ft " X 1 9i ... U ) 7 m 4 I) J J0m "m 0 Ron CooperStatesman Journal Joe Lichlyter, a log truck driver and the mayor of Gates, thinks the North Santiam Canyon communities are too controlled by outsiders. Opal Creek issue centers on control Some say the real controversy is about whether outsiders will decide what happens to the forested land. By Theresa Novak The Statesman Journal MEHAMA Jerry Branch doesn't mind so much that Sen. Mark Hatfield has proposed to protect Opal Creek. The manager of a logging equipment business, Branch thinks that battle was lost long ago. Branch, whose father started Branch Raymond Logging Equipment 40 years ago, thinks the Opal Creek issue isn't about saving or cutting trees anymore. It's about outsiders calling the shots in the community where he lives. "I haven't talked to anyone in the industry even loggers who gives a damn about Opal Creek anymore," Branch said. On Friday, Hatfield, R-Ore., introduced a bill on the floor of the Senate to protect 26,000 acres of the Opal Creek drainage from logging and mining. The forested heart of Opal Creek would be surrounded by a 12,800-acre enclave to be called the Opal Creek Wilderness Area. An additional 13,000 acres encompassing the former logging camp at Jawbone Flats and to ward the three pools campground would be named the Opal Creek Scenic and Recreation Area, extending protection to the regions surrounding Opal Creek. Elkhorn Creek would be designated a wild and scenic river, and the portion of the Bull of the Woods Wilderness within the Willamette National Forest would be renamed as part of the Opal Creek Wilderness. Please see Opal, Page 2B ft ptioD lhinglhwsi! Police agencies will focus their efforts to improve the safety of Highways 22 and 18. By Janet Davies The Statesman Journal Four police agencies are combining forces in an effort to provide safer highways between Salem and the coast. As many as 10 patrol cars will be on Highways 18 and 22 during peak travel periods, as police try to prevent repeats of the two fatal collisions nearly a week ago. Their presence will be especially evident Sunday, the last day of spring vacation, Polk County Sheriff Ray Steele said Friday. Officers from Oregon State Police, Yamhill County Sheriffs Department and Salem police will aid the effort. "Most of the agencies don't have the ability to patrol (Highways) 18 and 22 full-time," Steele said. This is the only way we can come up with the manpower." The two-lane routes to the coast from both Salem and McMinnville are notorious for being easily tied up by wrecks. Most are caused by speed combined with driver inattention, Steele said. SAFETY "People tell us they see drivers reading magazines, combing their hair, shaving, talking on the cell phone and reaching for things," he said. Polk Sgt. Brian Kauff-man, coordinator of the saturation patrol, said officers will have a zero tolerance for distracted drivers who drift from their lanes. "We will stop them and make them aware," he said! Those who are cited will face bails ranging from $67 to $285 for such offenses as speeding, failure to yield right-of-way, driving while encumbered and failure to stay within a lane of traffic- The patrol cars involved in the saturation will be both marked and unmarked. The Salem department's participation mainly will be in the West Salem area. The Polk and Yamhill departments will cross county lines as becomes necessary to cover Highway 18, which includes the Sheridan and McMinnville areas. Kauffman said the saturation patrols will be conducted for two weeks. Their work, including times and coverage areas, then will be evaluated to determine its effectiveness. Library board members face recall By Larry Roby The Statesman Journal uSILVERTON A committee has been formed to seek the recall of three members of the Silver Falls Library District board who vfeted not to renew library director Alan Miller's contract. Ted Conrad was named Thursday night as the chief petitioner of the recall movement against Nancy Woodward, Jeff Gunter and Mary-ahhe Layton, the three bpard members who voted against Miller. Conrad said about 45 people attended the meeting of the Committee to Save the Library, and the vote was nearly unanimous to proceed with the recall election. 'City Councilor Stu Ras-mussen, a copetitioner in the recall drive, said the board's decision "did not represent the best interest of Board meeting . The Silver Falls Library District board meets at 7 p.m. Monday at the library, 410 S. Water St, Sil-verton. The Committee to Save the Library will meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Fischer Building, 400 S. Water St., to discuss further plans to recall three library board members. Both meetings are open to the public. the library district. I think the board struck a nerve here, and it is quite close to the spinal cord of the community." Many residents were surprised by the board's 3-2 vote on March 18 to let Miller go. "The citizenry feels that the director is doing a marvelous job, and we are all irate. If the board won't listen to the populace, we don't feel they should be serving," said Jean Witte, another leader of the recall. Residents say they are frustrated because the board members have not made public the reasons for their decision not to renew Miller's contract. Woodward has said she had some concerns about Miller's management and administrative skills but would not elaborate. Gunter said Friday that he had no comment about his reasons for voting against Miller. He also had no comment about the recall movement against him. - Layton could not be reached for comment. "We don't know what clear and objective criteria they (board members) used for . not renewing the contract," ! Rasmussen said. "If there was a lacking of administrative skills or it involved per- sonnel matters, it seems that minor disciplinary actions or coaching sessions could have helped correct those problems." Conrad said he would offer the board members two options when the board meets Monday: Reverse the decision on not renewing the contract. Resign at the end of Monday night's meeting. "By doing either of these things, the board can serve the community's wishes to keep Mr. Miller, and they can save themselves the personal embarrassment of going through a recall election," Conrad said. ' Woodward has said she does not intend to change her vote on the issue. Gunter said the board plans to set the criteria for hiring a new library director at Monday night's meeting. Gravel industry wants clear guidelines Land-use activists fear weaker rules could lead to more neighbor conflicts. By John Henrikson The Statesman Journal . Oregonians can comment on an overhaul of state guidelines for siting gravel pits and protecting natural resources at a series of hearings next week. The Oregon Land Conservation and Development Commission is rewriting Goal 5, one of 20 statewide land-use planning goals to guide local decisions. The goal requires local governments to spell out how they will protect historic areas, wildlife habitats, scenic views and sites and other natural resources. The state's proposal "tries to clarify the existing policy," said Bob Rindy, a policy specialist with the Department of Land Con servation and Development. The rewrite could make a big change in one of the most controversial land-use issues in the Willamette Valley: gravel mining. The gravel industry has told the commission that the rules make establishing a gravel mine too difficult when faced with local opposition. They are asking for clear rules to protect gravel resources and allow for mining. But some land-use activists, including many who have fought gravel pits in their areas, fear that weaker rules could lead to more conflicts with neighbors and loss of high-quality farmland. They are asking the state to appoint a task force to study the matter further. The proposed revision separates gravel regulations from all the other rules, Rindy said. "The intent is to make it very clear to local, governments what they need to do to deal with aggregate mining applications," he said. "It provides a clear and objective set of standards." The proposal requires local governments to attempt to resolve conflicts between gravel mines and farms, Rindy said. Although it prohibits digging mines on the highest-quality farm soil, it wouldn't stop mines on class-two soil, which is considered nearly as good but is more plentiful. "If we prohibit mining on class-two soils, we essentially prohibit mining in the valley," Rindy said. Keep up with growth In the burgeoning Mid-Willamette Valley with Signs of Growth Saturdays In the Statesman Journal. More lnsids3D DEVELOPMENT: More on growth proposals. Signs of Growth Speak up The Oregon Land Conservation and Development Commission will hold hearings next month on proposed revisions to Goal 5. The state land-use rule applies to siting gravel mines and protecting natural resources. The schedule includes: Tuesday, 6:30 to 9 p.m.: Library, Hatfield Marine Science Center, Newport. Wednesday, 6:30 to 9 p.m.: Hearing Room 32, Yamhill County Courthouse, 535 E. Fifth a, McMinnville. April 18 and 19: LCDC . meeting and final public hearings, Hearing Room F, State Capitol, Salem. mm i j CV' IN 8il IW V I' 1 V I rr m ADVICE: Leo : Mellon, a roving principal with the Woodburn School District, helps the : student council at Nellie Muir School recently. Timothy J. Gonzalez Statesman Journal Principal wears many hats Woodbum's roving administrator appreciates his varied schedule. By Tonya Y. Menefee The Statesman Journal WOODBURN Leo Mellon is a principal without a school. A typical day as Wood-burn School District's roving principal and vice principal will have him managing a staff and working with students he probably won't see again for weeks. He sits at a desk that is not his own, working from a schedule centered around the district's middle and three elementary schools. Because the district operates on a year-round school system, principals can burn out if they don't take time off, said Mellon, who is in his late 40s. And that's where he comes in. For three years, Mellon has filled in for principals and vice principals so they could take vacations and sick days and attend confer ences and other special as signments. 1 He does not have a home, school to oversee but was the assistant principal at French Prairie Middle; School for four years. "What I'd been doing there was pretty intense, sc-I wanted a change," said Mellon, casually dressed in slacks, loafers, a short; sleeved shirt and tie. Please see Sub, Page 3B Hispanic vets come together By John Henrikson The Statesman Journal WOODBURN Ismael Villastrigo didn't live to see his vision of a gathering of Oregon's Hispanic veterans. But today, many of the Woodburn veteran's friends will carry on that dream without him. The newly formed Chi-cano Latino Veterans Association de Oregon will hold a daylong conference to discuss veterans' issues and remember Villastrigo. A disabled Vietnam vet, Villastrigo died of cancer earlier this month as the group was forming and planning the conference. He became interested in veterans' issues because of his own health problems, which he thought were caused by Agent Orange. "They never could pin Gathering today WhafaOregon Chicano Latino Veterans Conference. When: 11 a.m.-4p.m. today. Where: Woodburn United Methodist Church, 700 N. Cascade Drive, Woodburn. Agenda: Keynote speaker Master Sgt. Roy Benavidez, Medal of Honor winner; recognition awards; discussion of veterans' medical, employment and benefit Issues; vet-to-vet discussions. Cost: Free. down that it was service-connected," said Oregon National Guard Sgt. Mary Cornejo, co-chairwoman of the veterans association. "He died without the benefits that would have come from that." Appropriately, the event will feature one of Villa-! strigo's heroes, Master Sgt. Roy Benavidez, a Medal of Honor winner in Vietnam." Benevidez will give the keynote address. The State of Oregon Honor Guard will open the event at 11 a.m., followed by welcoming remarks and recognition awards in honor of Villastrigo. Afternoon programs will provide a chance for veterans to visit and learn more about employment and medical benefits. All Chicano or Latino vets, their friends and family and anyone else with an interest is welcome, Cornejo said. For information about the veterans association, call Cornejo at 945-3808 or co-chairman Francisco Garcia at 981-1396. r

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