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Fire destroys North Bank home

Todd MacCloud and a friend living with him at his North Bank Chetco River Road home watch as firefighters extinguish a fire that started sometime after 6 a.m. this morning.

A fire about a mile up the North Bank Chetco River Road this morning destroyed a house, but the two occupants and their dog were able to escape without injury.


Superintendent search begins

A group of about 30 people that includes school administrators, teachers and citizens prioritize a list of qualifications that will be included in the job description the Brookings-Harbor School Distict will use to hire an interim superintendent.

A group of 30 people gathered at Kalmiopsis Elementary School library Monday night. Their assignment: determine the key qualifications for candidates applying for the interim superintendent job at the Brookings-Harbor School District.

“This is really exciting. This is a wonderful opportunity to effect change in our school district,” said Bette Moore, Brookings resident and education advocate. 

She joined other residents, school administrators, teachers and staff who accepted the school board’s offer be help create the job description for the position that opened when Superintendent Brian Hodge resigned two weeks ago.


Outreach medical clinic closing

It is with bittersweet emotions that Bernie Lindley, vicar of St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church in Brookings, closes the doors of the Outreach Clinic there.

“It’s kind of sad to see it close, to know it’s going to come to an end,” he said of the clinic’s last day, Aug. 19. “It’s ‘mission accomplished.’ I hate that phrase.”

The clinic started in 2010 as an effort to provide free medical care in Brookings and Harbor to those who had no insurance. The vast majority of Outreach Clinic patients now have health-care insurance through the expanded Oregon Health Plan or the Affordable Care Act.


Group pursues community radio project

Another FM radio station might be joining the airwaves over Curry County soon.

A group of Brookings residents is delving into the low-power FM community radio genre in hopes of offering an array of programming that local commercial stations serving the area cannot always afford to do.


Authorities investigating reports of dead deer

Brookings police are working with state officials after stories of maimed, injured and killed deer — including two found in a Dumpster on Fifth Street last week — began circulating on social media.

Residents in the neighborhood of Fifth and Ransom streets said they’d seen does with missing legs, had heard of someone chopping off deer’s legs and even called police when the dead deer were found in a Dumpster.


Man fined for lying during herbicide spraying probe

The state of Oregon has fined the owner of a company that sprayed Cedar Valley residents with herbicides almost a year ago — not for making 40 residents fall ill, but for lying in the ensuing investigation.

Steven Owen, the applicator found responsible in the incident, has been fined a $10,000 civil penalty for providing false and misleading information in connection with the application northwest of Gold Beach. 

Additionally, the Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) has revoked Owen’s license and fined his company, Pacific Air Research, of White City a corresponding $10,000 fine.


Slides taking toll on road budget

A 2012 storm caused the Chetco River to rise high enough to undermine the slope below North Bank Chetco River Road. The cost to stabilize the slope will drain the city’s road repair budget.

The impacts of the November 2012 storm and flood just won’t quit.

The cost to repair two landslides in Brookings is likely to consume the city’s entire annual revenue for street repairs and resurfacing, City Manager Gary Milliman reported earlier this week.

At its July 28 meeting, the city council decided to proceed with geologic testing and plan preparation for the repairs on North Bank Chetco River Road and Marine Drive.


South Coast summer

Photo by Liz Cohen

A heron keeps a watchful eye on a sea lion swimming in the sea near the Port of Brookings Harbor. 

Transition underway at sheriff’s office

Curry County Sheriff John Bishop has promoted two of his men as part of a transition before his last day Sept. 30.

Lt. Jail Commander Dave Denny will now be a sergeant in parole and probation, replacing Kris Bishop, the sheriff’s wife; Jail Deputy Mike Espinoza will then take over Denny’s job as jail commander.

“He’s asked for (the position), and it makes sense because he works closely with parole and probation,” the sheriff said of Denny’s move. “He’ll have a learning curve, but he’s the easiest to put in there to train. He’s a good fit because he works so closely with corrections already; he knows the back-end of sanctions.”


Source of Mill Beach pollution remains elusive

Oregon Public Health officials have issued a second health advisory for water at Mill Beach after tests revealed a higher-than normal level of fecal bacteria.

The advisory does not have scientists overly concerned at this point, as Mill Beach has only had an incident rate of 12.5 percent for the year, said Aaron Borisenko of the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ). Usually, it hovers around a 15 percent incident rate.

The bacterial level was found to be 763 colony-forming units per milliliter of water on Aug. 6, Borisenko said. The acceptable level is 158 units per ml.


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