The Kelso City Council meets this evening, with a number of contract completions on the Consent Agenda. The Council is being asked to close out the contracts for the Talley Way perimeter fence, the rotating beacon replacement and Sullivan Hangar demolition at the Southwest Washington Regional Airport; they’re also closing out the work on the walls at the Tam O’Shanter Park Pavilion, Vista Way Storm Drainage and the North 1st Avenue Catch Basin improvements. The Council is being asked to approve new contracts with City Manager Steve Taylor, City Attorney Janean Parker, the Teamsters and the AFSCME. The Council also plans final adoption of the 2017-2018 operating budget. Tonight’s meeting starts at 6 pm in the Kelso City Council chambers, and is open to the public.
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The Cowlitz County Commissioners meet at 9 am today, starting their meeting with an “Environmental Covenant” with the Washington Department of Ecology, giving that agency the right to restrict activities and uses of the now-closed Tennant Way Landfill. Also on this morning’s agenda will be a public hearing on the ordinance that imposes a one-tenth of one percent sales tax, with those proceeds dedicated to support of 911 Communications Systems and Facilities. That hearing is scheduled to begin at 9:45 am in the County Commissioners’ Hearing Room.
After first announcing a delay in the re-opening of the Willow Grove Boat Launch, the Port of Longview is now saying that the work is complete, and the launch is fully open and is available for public use. They had planned to re-open on Saturday, but it took another full day to get that dredging and maintenance work done.
Voters in the Woodland School District will be voting on a replacement levy in February, a three-year levy that would replace the levy that expires at the end of next year. Under the plan being put forward by the Woodland School Board, this replacement levy would collect $4.5 million in 2018, $4.75 million in 2019, and $5 million in 2020. District officials say that these total represent about 16 percent of the overall budget in the Woodland School District. Additional details on the levy and the programs supported by that levy are available on the Woodland School District web page, located at woodlandschools.org/levy.
Be aware that a six- to eight-week closure of Baltimore Street goes into effect today, as water line replacement work continues. Starting today, Baltimore Street will be closed to through traffic between 15th Avenue and Oregon Way; detours will be posted, and access to private driveways on Baltimore will be maintained. Access to businesses on Oregon Way will also be maintained. Some of this work is weather-dependent, but they expect to re-open in six to eight weeks. Use alternate routes to avoid delays.
They’re also flushing the water lines in Area #4 tonight, starting at 7 pm and going until 11 pm. This is the area that’s bounded by 15th Avenue, Ocean Beach Highway and Lake Sacajawea. You’re advised to avoid using water while the flushing work is going on, and be sure to flush your home plumbing before using the water for cooking or cleaning.
We’re learning of the recent passing of long-time Weyerhaeuser Employees and Red Canoe Credit Union CEO Bob Kane. It’s reported that Kane died last Sunday night at the age of 68, after suffering a massive stroke. Kane retired from Red Canoe in 2009, after 19 years at the helm of the financial institution. The credit union went through huge growth during Kane’s tenure, going from assets of $23 million in 1990, to multiple branches and assets of more than $530 million at the time of his retirement. Memorial services are pending.
They have the “S” word in the forecast for the next couple of days, saying that there’s a good chance of low-level snow in the local area today and tomorrow. The Weather Service has a Winter Weather Advisory covering much of the region, going until noon today for Cowlitz County. Snow showers are predicted for the local area, with the heaviest showers expected between 5 and 7 am today. They say that the best chance of accumulating snow is above 700 feet, with one to three inches expected. Above 1,000 feet, two to four inches is expected in the Coast Range, and up to six inches in the Cascade Foothills. The Winter Weather Advisory is up until 2 pm in the Foothills, with three to six inches expected at those elevations.
Monday Morning School Information—
Longview – Morning snow routes for routes #5, and route #13
Kelso – Morning snow routes for routes #1, 4, 15, 20, 29, 31
Woodland – Little Kalama River Road and Shirley Gordon Road on Snow Route
Toledo (WA) – Closed
Winlock – Closed
Jewell – Closed
EOCF Head Start/E-CAP (Woodland) – No morning Head Start in Yacolt
Robert Craig Rowland, 20, is under arrest on five felony and three misdemeanor counts, accused of stealing cigarettes and coffee before taking law enforcement officers on a car chase this past Saturday afternoon. The theft was reported at about 1:40 pm on Saturday, at the Rebel Truck Stop, just south of Kalama. The clerk claims that the suspect pointed some sort of weapon at her, possibly a can of pepper spray. The clerk was able to get a license number, and it turns out that the suspect was driving a car reported as stolen out of Marysville. Kalama Police, Woodland Police and the State Patrol converged on the area, eventually spotting the suspect in the area of Finn Hall Road and Hawks View Road. A Kalama Officer spotted and stopped the car that Rowland was driving on Hawks View. Rowland is now being charged with second-degree robbery, felony eluding, possession of illegal drugs, possession of a stolen car, attempted car theft and three misdemeanor charges, held without bail at this time.
Thomas Max Mann, 46, of Castle Rock is being charged with reckless endangerment, after he allegedly fired “numerous” rounds at his home on Studebaker Road early last Saturday morning. Deputies called Lower Columbia SWAT to the home, after they responded to the home after getting a report that there was gunfire coming from the house. Responding to the home in the 400 block of Studebaker Road shortly after midnight, the first deputy on the scene reported hearing gunfire; the deputy announced his presence, ordering the person inside to disarm himself and come out. Those demands were met with a refusal and more gunfire. Additional Deputies arrived, along with SWAT; neighboring houses were evacuated, while additional attempts were made to get Mann to surrender. After about two hours, Mann did give himself up; they say that he had no explanation for his behavior, and he did not appear to be impaired. Mann is currently being held on the single count, with bail set at $10,000.
The Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office is looking into the burning of a stolen car, an incident reported early yesterday morning in the 100 block of Pineview Lane in Longview. A resident of the area called 911 at about 1:30 yesterday morning, saying that there was a car on fire in front of their house. Firefighters responded and got the fire put out, and that’s when it was discovered that this car had been stolen from a location in Battle Ground. Information on the recovery of the stolen car was relayed to the owner, while the theft investigation continues.