Local vigil to remember Orlando shooting victims

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Local News

Candlelight vigil at St. Andrews is for remembrance

An ecumenical gathering is set for Thursday night in Florence to remember and honor those involved in Sunday’s mass shooting in Orlando.  Georgia DuBose is the Vicar of St. Andrews Episcopal Church in Florence.  She says all are welcome for the outdoor candlelight vigil.

Georgia DuBose – “That event is to remember those who died and also to pray for those who have people they lost in this event.”

DuBose began planning the vigil with Judy Schwartz of the Florence Jewish Community, but several other faiths and congregations will be involved.

Georgia DuBose – “The objective is remembrance.  It’s not a political event, we’re not there to make a point, we’re there to remember the people who died.”

The vigil begins at 9 p.m. Thursday at the labyrinth behind St. Andrews on 19th Street at Tamarack.  People are encouraged to bring votive candles in glass jars or; preferably; battery operated candles.   Du Bose said it will be brief…

Latest reported scam involves student tax

Taxes are a year-round favorite when it comes to finding ways to defraud residents.

Ken Ross is the manager of the Oregon Department of Revenue Anti-Fraud efforts.  He said the latest variation on scammers’ fraudulent collection calls has not yet reached Oregon.  But, it has been reported in other parts of the country.

It works like this… You get a phone call from someone purporting to be from the IRS saying you are delinquent in payment of your federal student tax.  Like all phony collection calls Ross says, they will badger and threaten a person to send them money immediately… often by wire transfer or making payment on an iTunes gift card or other prepaid card.

Ross says don’t talk to callers that are insistent in immediate action.  Hang up and double check by calling the agency back at a publicly posted phone number.  The Oregon Department of Revenue will only call you about money owed after at least one notice sent by mail.  Ross suggests you go online to review potential scams at several government websites, including the one for the Oregon Department of Justice.

Bagley scholarship to aid nursing education

A Deadwood native who wants to become a midwife and nurse practicioner will get $20-thousand to help pay for her education.

Lila Patterson is this year’s recipient of the Geraldine Bagley Foundation Scholarship.  She will receive $5-thousand each year over four years.  Patterson intends to use it at Cedarville University in Cedarville, Ohio where she will pursue a nursing degree.  She is the first Bagley Scholarship recipient who has completed her entire education through home-schooling.

Oregon Pacific Bank Trust Officer Tina Meyers said the selection committee was “very impressed”  by Patterson’s application and added they were “thrilled” to grant her the scholarship.

The Geraldine Bagley Foundation Scholarship was established in 1999 and is designed to give financial assistance to graduating seniors in the Siuslaw or Mapleton school districts who wish to pursue higher education.  It is administered by the Oregon Pacific Bank Trust Department.

Seven Lane County elected officials could see pay hike

A salary boost has been proposed for seven elected Lane County officials.  The most dramatic would be a nearly 90-percent hike for the half-time Justice of the Peace position.  The current pay rate of $25,469 would increase to just over $48-thousand if Lane County Commissioners approve it next month.

The five commissioners would also get a pay hike out of the deal… something they have not had since 2008.  The county’s “elected official compensation committee” submitted their recommendations this week to give the five commissioners a 14.5-percent increase… from about $79-thousand a year to $85-thousand.  The other elected official to see a suggested raise would be the Sheriff… he would see the smallest jump percentage wise, but would remain the highest paid official at $141,570… up from about $136-thousand.

The committee is made up of five public and private human resource directors compare pay for similar positions in Clackamas, Deschutes, Jackson and Marion Counties.

Green light given to local razor clamming

Local razor clamming enthusiasts can now go after the tasty bivalve again.  The Oregon Departments of Agriculture and Fish and Wildlife announced the reopening of a popular stretch of beach in the area.

Levels of shellfish toxins in the clams recently fell enough to allow officials to open the stretch of beach between the Siuslaw River and Heceta Head to harvest.

Much of the Oregon Coast was off limits in the past year because of elevated toxin levels.  Beaches north of Heceta Head were opened to harvest last month.

New elevator scheduled for Sea Lion Caves

55-years after the original went into service at Sea Lion Caves, the owners of the visitor attraction and wildlife preserve will be updating the elevator that provides access to the cave itself.

Caves General Manager Boomer Wright said the replacement will be more energy efficient and environmentally friendly.

Boomer Wright – “Time to update and upgrade and get something that’s gonna be a little more, as far as we’re concerned, following the philosophy of, you know, being green and helping the environment.”

The elevator will utilize new technology and instead of cables that continually need adjustment and petroleum based lubricants, the “Gen-2” Otis Elevator is driven by self-contained belts.  Work on the replacement will begin sometime in October.

Boomer Wright – “That’s when our, the Sea Lions normally are not here. You know, we sure want people to come and visit, the gift shop will still be open, but at this point that’s probably the best time for us to close.”

The Cave itself will be closed to the public during the work which is expected to be completed before Thanksgiving.