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Police seek hit and run driver

Laying in a hospital bed Friday with a broken hip, knee and multiple cuts, Brookings resident Tim Price was thinking about only one thing.

“I hope they find the guy who did this,” the 29-year-old resident said. “I could have died that night.”

 

Price was heading home from work at 6 p.m. Wednesday, riding his motorized bicycle on North Bank Chetco River Road, when he was hit head on by a large pickup. The driver of the truck fled the scene, leaving Price’s crumpled body on the side of the road, about 2 miles east of Brookings.

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Port picks up two popular events

The Port of Brookings Harbor has assumed responsibility for two events — a summer farmers market and this Saturday’s crab festival — in an effort to make them bigger and better.

For its 13 years of operation, the Saturday Farmers Market at the port’s boardwalk, which typically starts in early June and runs through the second week in October, has been run by local residents. The current organizers, Tina and Dale Kirkpatrick, have run the market for two years. Before them, Vi and Len Burton ran the market for seven years.

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Prison time for woman guilty of identity theft

Kassandra Michelle White was sentenced to 36 months in prison after she was found guilty of three counts of identity theft and two of mail theft in Circuit Court Jan. 13.

The Brookings Police Department and Curry County Sheriff’s Office officials said a lengthy investigation showed White gave people methamphetamine in exchange for bags of mail they’d stolen from more than 50 Brookings-Harbor residents.

In the mail was blank checks of a couple from Brookings that White used in an attempt to cash or make purchases in town.

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Curry Medical Center sees uptick in patients

The number of patients being seen at Curry Medical Center in Brookings has increased 45 percent from its opening in 2011, primarily due to the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, officials of the health network said earlier this month.

On average, the clinic and urgent care facility, at 500 Fifth Street, now treat 2,171 patients per month.

To combat the 25 percent increase of patient registrations within the last year, the number of providers has more than doubled to include seven primary care providers, in addition to specialists pediatrician Raymond Harris, M.D., and pain management specialist Christopher Amsden, M.D.

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Woman hit by car in Harbor

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Caitlin Getz

Brookings resident Caitlin Elizabeth Getz, 21, is in stable condition at a Redding hospital after she was struck by a car Monday night while crossing Highway 101 in Harbor.

Getz, who suffereded head injury and possible brain bleeding, was transported first to Sutter Coast Hospital in Crescent City and then airlifted to Mercy Medical Center in Redding, California. On Tuesday, a hospital official listed Getz as being in stable condition in the intensive care unit. No more information was available.   

 

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Anti-panhandling efforts effective

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Bill Vogel’s frustration with trash on the beach has resulted in county ordinances that ban those in passing cars from giving panhandlers anything, signs erected to let people know about the new law, and information pamphlets directing the homeless to churches and agencies that can help them.

“Maybe that will solve our transient problems,” the Harbor resident said. “It seems to be working. You see people panhandling and you come by 10 minutes later and they’re gone. It might be working out on both angles.”

For years, Vogel strolled the beaches, becoming increasingly frustrated with the amount of trash he found. Although much comes from the ocean, piles — including tents, clothing, blankets and kitchen detritus — are often left behind by transients, in the grasses and under the trees higher on the shoreline.

He and others — residents Forbes Duncan, Gloria Draper and Nancy McVay — decided to try to tackle the problem at its source: the homeless who routinely panhandle at South Coast Center in Harbor.

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Possible impacts of big quake more dire

The repercussions of a magnitude 9.0 earthquake along Oregon’s coast are more dire than originally anticipated, Brookings City Manager Gary Milliman learned at a Southwest Area Commission on Transportation meeting in Coquille earlier this month.

According to a report made by Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) officials, residents on the coast could be isolated for as long as two to three years — not months.

The report was based on a study recently completed regarding the scheduling of retrofitting the state’s bridges. That study now puts coastal bridge priorities in the middle of a 1-6 ranking.

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It’s final: Harbor post office closing

After emotional pleas from Harbor residents for the last three months, the fate of the Harbor Post Office is settled. It will close on January 30, 2015, as all operations are moved to the Brookings Post Office. 

All customers will be assigned a new P.O. Box at the Brookings office, and will keep their mailing addresses.

Though the Harbor office will close, the USPS is still looking for business owners who want to run a Contract Postal Unit (CPU), which operates through another business, such as a grocery store, and would provide retail services such as mail services and selling stamps and other products. The CPU would not, however, have post office boxes. 

Harbor residents who initially protested the closing met several times in November and organized themselves to figure out a way to stop it, but were unsuccessful in their efforts.

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County gets some federal funding, but it’s no bailout

Curry County is no longer getting federal O&C bailout money. But it will receive some federal funds this year as part of the Twenty-Five Percent Fund Act of 1908.

All involved agree: It’s complicated.

Locally, elected leaders want to make sure residents understand: The money Curry County will receive is not one of the unexpected bailouts O&C counties have received in recent years, said Curry County Accountant Gary Short.

Ultimately, the county Road Fund expects to get $90,000 — not $1.5 million like last year.

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Huxley big on communication

County Commissioner Tom Huxley outlined his list of goals for his term that started Jan. 5 during a workshop this week in Gold Beach.

His plans revolve primarily on improved communications — from the recording microphones in the county meeting room to digitizing maps for easier access on the Internet — policy, plan and code updates; and consolidating the 911 departments of Gold Beach and Brookings.

Huxley would like to see microphones that project the board members’ voices, rather than merely record them for minutes.

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