2nd Oregon News Minute from the AP

AP-OR–2nd NewsMinute,301
Here is the latest Oregon news from The Associated Press
SALEM, Ore. (AP) – Drivers caught talking on their cellphones
are losing the “I have to use it for work” excuse next week. That
loophole in Oregon’s phoning-while-driving ban will be eliminated,
one of dozens of new laws that take effect in the new year. Come
Sunday, people who solicit underage prostitutes will face steep
fines, possessing shark fins will be illegal, and drunken drivers
will have to get a breath-test machine installed in their car.

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) – A robber who found his Portland victims
through gay chat lines and pretended to be interested in romance or
sex has been sentenced to more than 14 years in prison.
Investigators said Elijah Cohens II had four victims earlier this
year and each time pretended once he met them to be a policeman.
The Oregonian reports that investigators tracked him down through a
cigarette butt that had DNA matching an entry in the state

DEXTER, Ore. (AP) – Despite daily fines, a Lane County gravel
mining operation continues to haul rock away from a 600-foot butte
that, over decades, could be reduced to a 200-foot stub. The Eugene
Register-Guard reports that neighbors objected to the work at
Parvin Butte, and the county has begun fining the owners $330 a day
for working without land-use approvals. The owners say the county
lacks the authority to regulate their mine.

SALEM, Ore. (AP) – The first woman to chair the Oregon
Republican Party has died at 70. Deanna Marie Smith suffered a
stroke and died at a Salem hospital shortly after midnight
yesterday, according to longtime friend Judy Edstrom. Smith was
married to former five-term congressman Denny Smith. The couple
were a political team, and The Oregonian reports that Deanna Smith
was heavily involved in her husband’s unsuccessful bid for governor
in 1994.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

AP-NY-12-28-11 0930EST