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Less than an hour south of Clatsop County

Walmart sets up hiring center

Walmart set up a temporary hiring center in Astoria and is in the process of interviewing workers to fill 300 associate positions. “With the talented individuals in Warrenton, we are going to build one great Walmart team,” store manager Kimberly Smith said. “I am very excited to get started with the opening of our Hiring Center.” The center is open 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays 422 Gateway Ave., Suite 100. Interested applicants may also apply online at The store will (continued)

Human Services panel has openings

Clatsop County is seeking citizens to serve on the Human Services Advisory Council. The council advises county commissioners on services for residents with developmental disabilities, mental illness and drug or alcohol addictions. The panel identifies needs, establishes priorities for publicly funded services and assists in selection of service providers, evaluates services and provides a link to the public through advocacy and education. There are three openings on the council, each for (continued)

Former Mayor Kujala files for county seat; He faces challengers from Astoria in May 15 election

Former Warrenton Mayor Mark Kujala is among the three contenders running for Clatsop County Commissioner, hoping to take over the District 1 seat that will be vacated by Chairman Scott Lee. Kujala faces George McCartin and Andy Davis, both of Astoria, in the May 15 election. District 1 includes Warrenton, Hammond and the western portion of Astoria. Whoever is elected will take over in January, replacing Lee who has chosen to step down after eight years on the panel. All three men vowed to help (continued)

Scammers portray sheriff's personnel

The Clatsop County Sheriff's Office has been hit by multiple scams in the area, the agency reported Wednesday. Someone is calling residents saying they’re a deputy or employee of the sheriff’s office. The most recent includes a person identifying himself as “Sgt. Sullivan,” although previous callers have used the name “Sgt. Smith” or “Deputy Harper.” “Please be aware these are not real law enforcement officers,” the sheriff’s office wrote in a media release. “The unknown (continued)

All crabbing now open statewide

The state has determined the level of toxic substances in crab is minimized and declared commercial and residential crabbing open throughout the entire coast. While crabbing began a few weeks ago in this area, the portion of the coast south of Cape Blanco remained closed due to high levels of domoic acid, a marine biotoxin. Oregon Department of Agriculture and state Fish and Wildlife still recommend that crab be eviscerated and the guts or butter discarded prior to cooking. When whole crab (continued)

State has good hiring news

Oregon added 5,000 jobs in January, keeping the unemployment rate at a record low. Unemployment has been at a historical low and stable for more than a year, remaining at 4.1 percent in January and December. Oregon’s unemployment rate is the lowest since 1976. Three major industries each added close to 1,000 jobs: private educational services at 1,100; construction, 1,000; and manufacturing, 800. The gains were partially offset by a loss of 700 jobs in leisure and hospitality. (continued)

No charges will be filed in Camp Rilea death

No criminal charges will be filed in the accidental firing of a weapon that killed a soldier at Camp Rilea on Jan. 31, the Clatsop County District Attorney’s Office announced. Spc. Devin James Kuhn, 24, was found with a gunshot wound about 6:30 p.m. Jan. 31 in Rilea’s housing area. He was taken to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead by doctors in the emergency room. The DA’s office reviewed extensive reports from the Clatsop County Sheriff's Office and conducted ex (continued)

Drug store counter from before 1922 fire gets a new home

A historic drug store counter, saved from Owl Drug before it burned in the 1922 fire, was donated to The Liberty Theater this week. The theater plans to use it as a concession stand. Owl Drug Store operated out of the Lovell Building after the fire and, by 1928, was rebuilt downtown on the northeast corner of 12th and Commercial streets, across from the theater. The Liberty Theater has needed a concession stand for some time and has been actively looking for solutions, the theater’s manager (continued)

Lake sediment cores offer 1,500-year watershed time capsule

Researchers have analyzed layers of sediment at the bottom of a southwest Oregon lake to get a better understanding of watershed disturbances dating back nearly 1,500 years. Like chapters in a book, the annual layers provide a glimpse into the natural and human factors that have affected Loon Lake since it was created by a landslide on Lake Creek. Scientists have documented the earthquakes and regional climate cycles -- as well as fires and storms -- that swept through the watershed in the (continued)

Model train hobby club is on the right track


Dick Wagner of Warrenton remembers when passenger and freight trains were common everywhere. At 90 years old, he recorded his knowledge many years ago by creating a scale model layout in his garage showing railroading as he remembers it. “It’s fun,” he said. Wagner is a member of the Columbia Northwestern Model Railroading Club, a local group that’s been around for more than two decades. The club meets at each other’s homes so they can help build and improve everyone’s train (continued)

A 'Natural' fit with shoppers: Ice cream social lures residents on grocer's opening day

The lure of ice cream, muffins and a chance to win free groceries, brought hundreds of shoppers to Youngs Bay Plaza for Natural Grocers’ two-day grand opening. The all-organic GMO- and hormone-free food seller’s 21,800-square-foot Warrenton store was much anticipated. “It’s a lovely store,” said Sandy Van Meer of Astoria, who was sampling elk and black-bean sliders from the catered spread set up in the education center at the back of the store. “It’s all delicious.” As mor (continued)

Tide changes in Eighth Street Dam controversy

State law precludes Warrenton from replacing the old tide gates removed from the Eighth Street Dam in 2015, the state’s top fish passage expert told city leaders Tuesday. “We have a long history in this state of fish-passage challenges,” said Greg Apke, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s statewide fish passage program leader. Oregon’s laws governing tide gates date to 1859, when it became a state. All older tide gates – and Oregon has more than 1,200 -- were grandfathered in. (continued)

Voters will be asked to keep police position

Residents will be asked in May to continue paying for a Warrenton police officer position. The funding would come from the extension of a property tax levy first passed in 1999. Warrenton Police Department has seven officers and, should the levy fail, at least one officer position would be cut. “There is not some magic pot of money,” Mayor Henry Balensifer said at Tuesday night’s City Commission meeting. “This will end in some real cuts if we don’t have this levy.” Home owners (continued)

Dems vote on delegates and platform 'planks'

The Clatsop County Democratic Central Committee has voted to continue its fight against fossil fuel facilities on the coast and recommends a new plank in the party platform: Oregon’s inclusion in a presidential popular vote interstate compact. The committee, which met Jan. 29 in Astoria, decided the national popular vote compact is essential to ensure their presidential electors vote based on the popular vote count within the 50 states and the District of Columbia. The 2000 and 2016 (continued)


Letter to the Editor: Disagrees with plan to destroy flood structure

I’m responding to last week’s story about the fish passage specialist who spoke at the last Warrenton City Commission meeting. I have never been opposed to fish passage as a desirable goal for any waterway. However, I oppose future uncontrolled flooding potential along waterways that have flood control structures that could be used to control flooding. Since 1963, property owners adjacent to the Skipanon River south of the Eighth Street flood control structure had never experienced serious (continued)

This Week in Aboriginal History: Columbus calls Indians 'men of great kindness'

March 9, 1935: Officers of tribes are now considered U.S. officers. March 10, 1621: Samoset meets the pilgrims. He startled colonists by greeting them in English, which he’d learned from visiting ship captains. March 11, 1856: The Nez Perce join Col. Cornelius in a fight against the Yakima. March 12, 1858: The Poncas sign a treaty granting them a permanent home on the Niobrara River and protection from their enemies, both white and Indian. For these privileges, the Poncas give up part of (continued)

Senior Moments for March 9: We need each other every day

I have a little sign by my computer, which gives me renewed strength sometimes. It says: “Stress is not what happens to us, it is our response to what happens and response is something we can choose.” A wise woman, Maureen Killoran, wrote that. The last name sounds a little Irish. We seniors have a way of cheering each other and I’m told that’s why it’s best we not stay home alone, alone. Our peers often help us work through the way we respond to a given situation. And yes, we really (continued)

Senior Moments Column: Musings on spring and baseball

Take me out to the ball game; Take me out to the park; Buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jack, I don’t care if I ever get back. Let me root, root, root for the home team, If they don't win, it’s a shame. For it’s one, two, three strikes, you’re out at the old ball game. Want some good news? Baseball players are already in serious practice games. Only two more weeks ahead when we maybe will have winter weather and then we break into beautiful spring. Baseball season! Remember one month ago (continued)


Free boater safety class offered

A state-mandated boater safety class will be held in Astoria March 24 and registrations are being taken now. The U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla 62 in Cape Disappointment and the Oregon State Marine Board are sponsoring the free class. The class is from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the second-floor conference room at Englund Marine & Industrial Supply, 95 Hamburg Ave. Students who successfully complete the course may apply for their boater education card, which is required by Oregon’s and (continued)

French influence on the Pacific Northwest is topic of talk

A talk on how the Northwest was influenced by French-speaking people is set for 1 p.m. Sunday, March 18, at Fort Clatsop. “From the Great Lakes to the Lower Columbia: French Canadians and Metissage” is the title of Robert Foxcurran’s talk, which is part of the monthly “In Their Footsteps” free speakers series. Foxcurran, a retired Boeing historian, is co-author of the 2016 book, “Songs Upon the Rivers: The Buried History of the French-Speaking Canadiens and Metis from the Great (continued)

Air Force jazz band offers free concert

The U.S. Air Force Band of the Golden West’s jazz ensemble, The Commanders, will perform a free concert at 2 p.m. Saturday, March 17, at the Liberty Theater, 1203 Commercial St., Astoria. The Commanders are one of seven performance groups that make up the Band of the Golden West, which is stationed at Travis Air Force Base, Calif. In addition to performing for civilian communities throughout California, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Nevada, Arizona and Utah, the band supports 13 Air Force bases, (continued)

Future WHS freshmen invited to open house

Warrenton High School invites all potential incoming freshman for the 2018-19 school year to an open house from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 22, at the high school, 1700 S. Main Ave. This will be a great opportunity for parents and students to meet WHS staff, teachers, coaches, club advisers and administrators. Coaches will have information on summer schedules and fall schedules for the upcoming school year. 6 to 6:30 p.m.: Athletics information and faculty meet-and-greet. 6:30 to 7 p.m.: (continued)

'Chick Cam' offers live look at hatchings

The popular Chick Cam from Oregon State University Extension Service, Clatsop County, has returned. The 24-hour video camera follows the fate of a dozen chicken eggs from hatching until they emerge on the expected due date of March 20. March 23 will be the final day of live viewing. In years past, the Chick Cam went viral as people discovered the fascination of watching nature at work. In one week, thousands of viewers watched the Chick Cam for an average of four minutes, checking back tim (continued)

Professor talks about pondering and protecting fish

How does a baby fish get from its birthplace to the location where it will settle and grow? Scott Heppell, associate professor of Fisheries at Oregon State University, ponders and explains those kinds of questions for a living. Heppell’s studies in juvenile rock fish has led him to question the size and space or Oregon’s marine reserves and protected areas. Heppell and his team are among the first to research the size and scope of the reserves for the Redfish Rocks Marine Reserve near Port (continued)

Public Safety

Police blotter for March 9 edition

Arrests Drunken driving, 4:05 p.m. Feb. 25, Harbor Drive at Heron Street. Bryon Garratt Stalcup, 56, of Woodland, Wash., was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of intoxicants and cited for having no operator’s license and refusing to take a breath test. Burglaries/thefts Stolen trailer, 2:53 p.m. Feb. 23, Les Schwab. A 2005 7-foot by 16-foot Bulldog car trailer worth $5,000 was taken. Theft of cash, 2:09 p.m. Feb. 26, Fred Meyer. Customer in self-checkout lane forgot to take (continued)

March 2: Police and fire logs

Arrests Warrant, 7:30 p.m. Feb. 24, 1500 block South Main Avenue. Caleb Daniel Connell, 30, of Warrenton was arrested on a probation warrant and released pending a court appearance. Thefts/burglaries Theft of package, 10:20 a.m. Feb. 22, 0-100 block Southwest Birch Court. Man reports a package delivered by FedEx was stolen off his front porch. Theft from vehicle, 1:14 p.m. Feb. 23, 1200 block Third Avenue, Hammond. Man reports theft of a tool box, drill with charger and deck screws valued at (continued)

Road Work

A major project in downtown Tillamook is likely to delay drivers headed south on Highway 101 and work will continue on the Astoria-Meglar Bridge’s $20 million painting and improvement project through July. Road maintenance in Jeffers Garden and Lewis & Clark Road. Road maintenance on Aldrich Point Road and Old Highway 30 in Svensen. Brush removal in Hamlet. (continued)