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Tag Archives: columbia river gorge

I’m ‘The Columbian’, Hear Me Roar

The Vancouver Columbian has rather fawning article about how "Women have come to power in the city government here for the first time since Washougal was incorporated in 1908." That's all well and good — but what does it mean? That they'll license cats for free and double the fees for dogs? The repainting of city worktrucks to a shade of fuchsia? No. Well, maybe. Rather, the gender overcompensation is, says The C, that a 5-3 female majority on the city council (heck with the other three!) "brings fresh energy...just as a new day is dawning..." Wow. Maybe the rest of us could get our towns to vote in female council majorities! I mean, a new day dawning! Still, the piece is worth reading (even if it entails a bit of eye-rolling) for the details of Washougal's renewal projects and downtown-sprucifying. One question remains, however: Is Washougal is the Gorge? It's town's tagline is "Gateway to the Columbia Gorge" — but, then, it's on the other side of the river, so you decide.

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Homegrown Hollywood

A love of film and home mark the indie Parkdale Film Festival by Tomi Owens It was dark and bitter cold outside the night I interviewed Parkdale Film Festival coordinator Jess Caudillin the Full Sail Ale Brew Pub in Hood River. When I arrived, Jess and his fellow coordinators were gathered in a far corner, still deep in discussion. After making my way to them slowly, I pulled up a chair at the edge of their little circle to listen to the last of the meeting while staring out the massive plate glass windows at the inky Columbia River below. I hear about logistics, venues, sponsorship and all the attention to detail that has made the festival an unqualified success since its inception in 2003. The festival is back with a new venue in 2006 — and there's still time for aspiring film-makers to shoot and submit their cinematic creations.

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Measure 37 in Court: There’s Got To Be A Better Way

Sam Lowry The Oregon Supreme Court allowed 90 minutes Tuesday for oral arguments in the appeal of MacPherson vs. Dept. of Administrative Services, better known as the Measure 37 court case. The trickle of words was the tip of an iceberg: The legal arguments fill hundreds of pages. But the brief public show made clear how close to state government's heart the issues cut, how much untangling the justices have to do. And how despicable a mess hard heads have created.

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White Salmon Rock Slide

Did you see this bit o' landslide reported in the White Salmon Enterprise? It's raining boulders out there.

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Addicted to Casinos

You'd think several large casinos plus lottery tickets and video poker machines in every mom-and-pop shop would satisfy the gambling market, not to say saturate it. But that's the problem with addiction: Saturation is not enough. So we've had gambling on the brain recently: * There are efforts underway to build two Metro-area casino centers,

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Blogger Captures Trains. On Film.

Aaron Hockley is a man with a mission: To follow trains, and take their pictures. He blogs about this curious pastime, and recently put up a photo essay of trains in the Columbia Gorge. Hockley also organizes the annual GorgeRail festivities, where train fans from around the West converge on the Gorge to talk and share photos. Of trains. Some of them are rather eye-catching. The photos, I mean. Not the fans so much, I suspect. GorgeRail 2006 is this May.

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The Real Lesson of Abramoff: A Warning About Gorge-Area Casinos

by Frank Maguire Was the startling revelation in l'affaire Abramoff that politicians and other unscrupulous agents accept payoffs from those who, with hidden intent, seek special favors? Of course not! Lobbyists pander while politicians and their pertinent partners pilfer — as night follows day. Don't be gulled by those covert money folk — whoever they are — who promote gambling as family fun and games.

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Walden: Mount Hood Plan Coming in February

Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.), of Hood River, says the bipartisan Mount Hood Wilderness expansion plan plan he's been touting with Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) will debut as a proposed new federal law next month. The statement came on Walden's Web site, as part of his outline for a 2006 legislative agenda.

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Biofuelin’ an Ethanol Industry

During a meeting this week of a thousand Oregon business and government bigwigs in Portland, Harvard business prof Michael Porter argued that the state needs to develop its industrial "clusters,"or groupings of related industries. They feed off one another's energy, it seems. One cluster that may be sprouting in our neighborhood: Ethanol plants. One Gresham man, Hiroshi Morihara, hopes to construct an ethanol plant (producing ethanol from the wood chips of poplar trees barged down the Columbia River) and research center in east Multnomah County. Further along with its plans is WestPac Fuel of Mill Valley, Calif., which signed a deal in December to lease 25 acres from the Port of Morrow in Boardman, Ore.

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Oregon’s Measure 37 Gets Its Day In Court

Today is the day. Measure 37's day in court. Today, Tuesday, the Oregon Supreme Court is hearing arguments that the 2004 ballot measure which upended state land-use regulations is, and is not, constitutional. Waiting in the balance are more than 3,000 applications under Measure 37. Each one is an Oregon landowner — including a couple hundred in the Gorge — who wants to bypass land-use rules, for everything from putting a second home on his property to subdividing his land for a hundred houses. If the Supremes uphold an autumn ruling from Marion County Circuit Judge Mary Mertens James, they will strike down Measure 37 as unconstitutional for favoring longtime landowners over more recent landowners, and for trampling on the duties reserved for the Legislature. If they reverse James and uphold Measure 37, they will confirm the voters who agreed that landowners shouldn't be bound by land-use rules that limit their property value. Measure 37 said that governments must waive such rules, or else compensate owners. Since compensation en masse is beyond the reach of government, Measure 37 essentially releases most checks on development.

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