The NWAACC baseball tourney is now under way at LCC’s Story Field, and runs through Monday. LCC’s first game is set for 7:35 tonight against Yakima Valley…..Erik Bedard threw six scoreless innings and scattered six hits en route to a 3-0 Mariners’ win over Minnesota. Two relievers helped to preserve the shutout. Seattle has today off, then will open a three-game series with the Yankees tomorrow…..Mark Grace Jenks with Mark Morris shot an 80 to finish 4th at the 2A state golf tourney, leading the Monarchs to a 5th-place team finish. The Ilwaco boys won their third 1A title in the past 4 years…..Bandon ousted the Rainier baseball team from the 3A playoffs with a 7-0 win. The Columbians’ softball team also got knocked out, as Horizon Christian came from behind for a 6-5 win.
Archive | May, 2011
The Longview City Council is putting the city’s Red Light Camera ordinance to a vote, but it’s not the vote that backers of Longview Initiative Number 1 were looking for. By a vote of 4-3, the City Council voted to declare the initiative invalid, but did vote to put the issue on the November ballot for an advisory vote. About 50 people came to this morning’s meeting, led by initiative backers Mike Wallin, Josh Sutinen and Tim Sutinen, along with anti-tax and anti-red light camera activist Tim Eyman. The City Council took about a half-hour of citizen input. Many spoke against the red light cameras, but nearly all expressed support for opportunity to allow people to vote. In the end, Mayor Kurt Anagnostou was joined by Council members Dennis Weber, Mary Jane Melink and Chuck Wallace in voting to declare the initiative invalid, and for the advisory vote in November. Don Jensen, Ken Botero and Chet Makinster voted against that motion. City Attorney Marilyn Nitteberg-Haan says that she’ll now start working on a resolution that best reflects the wishes of the City Council, then that resolution will be placed on a future Council agenda for discussion and citizen input. Backers of the initiative say that they’re hoping that the language of their measure will be used. Nitteberg-Haan says that she doesn’t know the exact timing, but given the election schedule, she anticipates a draft to be out in late June or early July.
The Minnesota Twins snapped the Mariners six game winning streak with a 4-2 victory yesterday. The teams are playing a day game today in Minneapolis…..The teams will begin to arrive today on the eve of the NWAACC Baseball Championships at Story Field. Four games begin tomorrow morning at 9:35 am with LCC playing Yakima Valley at 7:35 pm…..The Rainier baseball team begins the 3A State playoffs with a game at Bandon this afternoon…..The Rainier softball team also begins 3A State action at Horizon Christian today…..Karina Paavola of Kelso is a national champion as her Linfield team wins the NCAA Division III title…..Mary Grace Jenks of MM shot an 81 on the first day of the State 2A Golf Tourney, good for 4th place. Kamri Tapani of RAL shot an 86, tied for 12th.
Backers of the initiative to put Longview’s Red Light Camera ordinance in front of the city’s voters are expressing outrage over the announcement that the City Council will be asked to invalidate the initiative that was delivered on Monday. Mike Wallin, Tim Sutinen and Josh Sutinen spent yesterday sending out e-mails, handing out flyers and contacting local media about their efforts to battle the city on this. Wallin contacted an attorney in Bellevue, who sent an e-mail to the city, citing case law that supports the initiative process, contradicting the City Attorney opinion that the initiative is invalid. Sutinen and his son spent the day doorbelling and distributing flyers, urging people to show up for this morning’s City Council meeting. There was even a false rumor going around that the meeting had been moved up a half-hour, so that the Council could avoid the public outcry. City officials confirm that this morning’s special meeting is set to begin at 8:30 am. After convening, the Council will move into executive session to discuss potential litigation, then will return to open session to discuss the proposed resolution to invalidate the initiative. Backers of the initiative are planning a rally at the City Hall, starting at 7:30 this morning.
They’re still trying to figure out exactly what caused a fire that did severe damage to a home on Ostrander Road yesterday morning. Fire agencies from Kelso and Castle Rock responded to a structure fire reported just after 11 am , when flames and smoke were seen coming from the house at 1248 Ostrander Road. First responders reported that the house was “quite involved” when they arrived, asking for additional resources. A family of four safely escaped the fire, but four pets did not. Three cats and a small dog died in the fire. They say that it took 13 firefighters about an hour to get the fire completely put out, with about 50 percent of the home engulfed in flames when they arrived. Fire officials say that it looks like the fire started on the lower level of the home, but the cause hasn’t been pinpointed. The Red Cross is assisting the family that was displaced, and it’s also reported that the homeowners do have insurance.
The Sheriff’s Office is looking into a burglary reported early this morning at Capstone Cellars, located in the 4300 block of Pacific Way. A security company reported an alarm at the facility at about 1:20 this morning; when Deputies arrived, they found a broken front window on the building. Further checking shows that the suspect got into the building, then went out through the back door. They haven’t said what might have been taken. One man who was in the area was questioned, but no arrests have been reported as of yet.
The Kalama Lions report that someone set one of their newspaper recycling collection sheds on fire. This was reported at the shed that’s located at Old Pacific Highway and Robb Road. There’s no word yet on total damage done by the fire. No suspects have been identified.
Members of local 21 of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union were out in force yesterday morning in Kelso, protesting the new EGT grain terminal at the Port of Longview. Dan Coffman with the ILWU says that local workers are being shut out from working on the 200 million-dollar facility, and may be shut out when it opens. Several dozen union members gathered on street corners along Allen Street and surrounding the County Administration building, marching and waving signs. A smaller contingent also showed up at the Port of Longview in the afternoon, with several members attending the Port Commission meeting to also express concerns. Coffman says that they’re trying to keep the pressure on to get EGT to employ local, union workers at the facility. They’re also challenge a supposedly “preferential” lease agreement that’s been awarded to EGT, calling it a “slap in the face” to the Port of Longview and local workers. Coffman says that another huge rally is being planned for Portland in the near future.
Citing family and business pressures, Cal Miller is stepping down from his position on the Kelso School Board. Miller says there’s simply not enough time available to do everything that he needs to do. Miller was unable to physically attend last Friday’s special School Board meeting where Rob MacGregor was selected as Superintendent, as his mother was undergoing a ten-hour surgery connected to her bladder cancer. Miller says it’s been a “pleasure and an honor” to serve as a member of the Kelso School Board, and that he deeply regrets having to make this move. He says that Kelso has a dedicated and highly qualified faculty and administration, and he feels that the district is moving in the right direction. School Board President Bob Simmons says that he appreciates Miller’s dedication to Kelso schools, making valuable contributions to the board over the past two years. He says Miller will be missed. There’s been no decision made yet on how to proceed with naming a replacement. The School Board has 90 days to make that decision.
Cowlitz County jobless rate dropped nearly a full percentage point between March and April of this year. The Employment Security Department says that Cowlitz County’s unemployment rate went from 12.8 percent in march to 11.9 percent in April, the lowest number in more than a year. That compares to 14.5 percent at the same point last year. Regional Economist Scott Bailey says that there’s been some good news job-wise, saying that preliminary estimates from the Federal government were too pessimistic. Employment in March increased by 1,200 jobs, but the county is still down 2,800 jobs when compared to the start of the recession. Statewide, the April unemployment rate edged up just a bit, going from 8.8 percent in March to 9 percent in April.