Coast Radio Daily News

Can Logging Help Suppress Fires; Coast Guard Auxiliary Offers Boating Certificate; Health Coverage Threatened; 101 Delays Towards Yachats

Logging Could Help Fire Control

Logging was once a big contributor to the economy, but with regulations and laws regarding the logging of federal timber those days are behind us.  But with the recent devastation of wildfires both here in Oregon and around the pacific northwest, many are wondering if there isn’t a better way to control the millions of acres of Federal forests by being proactive.  Bob King of R&R King Logging says the decades old regulations have meant less money for things like roads and infrastructure because the federal government doesn’t offer contracts for major logging operations and generally only allows sporadic thinning.

“The return dollar to the government and us taxpayers is practically nothing because there is no return because they have to sell the timber at such a low price.”

Regulations that have been in effect since the Clinton Administration prohibit the large scale removal of trees from lands that are under the care of the Department of Forestry.  King says this creates dangerous conditions that lead to this summers massive fire outbreaks.

”By not managing our forests like up here in the headwaters of the Siuslaw of the North Fork and up in that area it is all fire prone.”

King says he does not know what the future will bring, but hopes he is seeing an effort to reinvigorate the logging industry.  King says in today’s forests, due to conservation and replanting by loggers we have more timber than in the days prior to civilizations foothold on the land.

Boating Class Scheduled

The U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary will be conducting a safe boating class for anyone who wishes to operate a boat in the state of Oregon.  It is a requirement for anyone operating a boat that has a motor that is over 10 horsepower and for youth 12-15 years of age.  There is a $15 charge for the  class and it will be held at the Siuslaw Valley Fire and Rescue Station 2625 highway 101. Pre-registration is required by contacting the Coast Guard Auxiliary at 541-463-1797.

Measure Could Wipe Out Coverage

Groups are mobilizing to protect the heath coverage of 350-thousand Oregonians from an initiative heading for January’s ballot. Measure 101 challenges House Bill 2391 – passed by this year’s Legislature and supported by most health insurers and providers – which funds insurance for low-income people on the Oregon Health Plan though a tax on health insurers and providers. Karen Escobar is bipolar and schizophrenic and relies on O-H-P for in-home care and medication. She says she couldn’t function without it.

“Without my mental meds, I couldn’t live on my own. I can’t even boil water without them.”

More than 200-million dollars in funding for O-H-P and the State Reinsurance Program will be cut if H-B 2391 is repealed. Escobar’s caretaker Nancy Finerty says that would affect people in her line of work. She says the people she takes care of wouldn’t be able to afford in-home care anymore and would most likely have to live in a nursing home.

“We are not just paperwork. All of us is people. And we depend on working for these people that – I know they’re called clients, but these people aren’t clients. They are family. They are friends.”

Because of the initiative’s wording, a “yes” vote will keep the health-care funding in place and a “no” vote will rescind it.

Road Closure Announced

If you are planning a day trip to Yachats today you should be prepared for delays as the Oregon Department of Transportation is doing repair work on a stretch of highway 101 beginning at milemarker 166.  The almost two mile stretch of road will be down to one lane while workers repair portions of the road.  The closure will be from 9am until 5pm this evening.  Delays could be as long as 30 minutes as traffic is led by a pilot car.  ODOT suggests that you check for up to date information on the traffic situation.