The Cowlitz County Canvassing Board is scheduled to meet this morning at 9, where a mandatory recount of ballots cast in the race for Kelso City Council position number 7 will be conducted. After all of the votes from the August 4th election, Nancy Malone was the winner with 457 votes, or 41.55 percent of the total. The race is for second place, which will move onto the General Election in November. Incumbent Gary Schimmel leads Adena Grigsby by only five votes, 324-319. Today’s recount will be conducted in a meeting that’s open to the public, and will be held in Conference Room B at the County Administration building in Kelso. They plan to certify the results at 3 pm, after the recount is concluded.
At 1pm today, Lower Columbia CAP will be handing out surplus salmon from local hatcheries. To be able to take part, you’ll need to be a Washington resident with an EBT card or a food commodity card from CAP. You’ll also want to bring a cooler or some other type of container suitable for carrying a fish. Call Lower Columbia CAP at 425-3430 if you have other questions.
Hisashi Iwakuma followed up his no-hitter with another solid performance as the Mariners beat Texas 3-2 yesterday. Iwakuma allowed two runs and five hits over seven innings. The M’s scored all of their runs in the first inning including a Seth Smith two-run homer. Seattle and Texas play a day game today, KLOG 10:00 am…..All-Pro safety Earl Thomas made his return to Seahawks practice yesterday donning full pads for the first time since off-season shoulder surgery. The team released long snapper Nate Boyer, the ex-Green Beret who was an inspiration in camp…..Washington high school football practices begin today as the teams get together on the field for the first time. The season gets underway on Friday September 4th.
A settlement is being announced by the City of Kelso and the Love Overwhelming homeless shelter, jointly stating that a “mutual agreement” has been reached regarding the city’s drug nuisance abatement lawsuit. City Manager Steve Taylor says that this agreement should help to resolve many of the recent problems attributed to the facility. Under the Stipulation and Settlement Agreement that was released yesterday, the city and Love Overwhelming will settle and compromise the claims made, “without admission by any party.” It’s agreed that Love Overwhelming has taken steps to mitigate and eliminate drug activity at the facility at 304 Cowlitz Way; they also agree to increase overnight staffing, and will continue to use the Coordinated Entry system for allowing people into the shelter. Access to the shelter’s smoking area will be restricted to clients only; it’s thought that much of the drug traffic took place in that area. A curfew of 11 pm for the Emergency Shelter will be maintained, “progressive discipline” will be used for violations of the rules, and the Urban Rest Stop will close two hours a day for cleaning and safety checks. Love Overwhelming and Kelso Police will meet at least monthly, and both sides pledge to keep each other informed about complaints or arrests involving clients. Additional information and other details should be discussed at this morning’s meeting of the County Commissioners, where that panel will consider a funding increase for the facility.
The record heat continues today, with a Heat Advisory in effect for the local area from 11 am until 9 pm today. The Weather Service is predicting a high of 96 today, with the hottest temperatures going from 1 to 6 pm. There’s also a Red Flag Warning through the Portland metro area, extending down through the Willamette Valley, saying that fire danger is also at extremely high levels. Take precautions to protect yourself from the heat; avoid strenuous activity during the heat of the day, drink plenty of water, and be sure to keep an eye on vulnerable individuals and pets.
It’s now being reported that the Cougar Creek Fire near Mt. Adams is 15 percent contained, currently listed at 22,500 acres in size. Fire officials say that work is now concentrated on the southeast finger of the fire, working to “pinch off” the front moving toward the town of Glenwood. Resources are also being concentrated to prevent the fire from reaching Big Muddy Creek, and to save an irrigation flume. Fire crews were able to save a snowmobile shed and a wooden water supply structure. More than 440 firefighters continue to battle the fire, which was started by lightning back on the 11th of this month.
A woman is under arrest and a summons is being issued for a male suspect in the theft of a TV from the Walmart at 38th and Ocean Beach Highway. Store security called Longview Police at about 8:50 pm, reporting that the suspects were heading out, driving a Ford Explorer. The SUV was tracked down 38th and Industrial Way, apparently making its way to the Lewis and Clark Bridge. Longview Police say that a woman got out of the car at the base of the bridge, and she was captured after a short foot chase. The male driver continued across the bridge. April Dawn Fair, 31, of Rainier is now being held on a Department of Corrections warrant, while a summons is being issued for the driver.
The Washington State Patrol is updating the report regarding Sunday morning’s fatal motorcycle crash near Amboy, now saying that Keith Wilson, 49, of Ariel was riding “too fast for the conditions.” Troopers say that Wilson was riding a brand-new Yamaha YZF-R1, which is billed as a “superbike,” with a top speed of 170 miles an hour. They say that Wilson was riding on SR 503 when he failed to make a curve seven miles north of Amboy. The motorcycle went off the road and down an embankment, ejecting Wilson. He was declared dead at the scene. No charges are anticipated.
With no public comment, the Kelso School Board unanimously passed the 2015-2016 operating budget yesterday, setting the stage for the upcoming school year. School Board President Patty Wood says that they may have to dip slightly into reserves, but she says that it’s a good budget overall. Kelso Schools plan to work off of a budget of $55.1 million in the 2015-2016 school year. The district also plans to transfer $728,000 from the General Fund to the Capital Fund, also transferring other dollars to cover the district’s debt service. Superintendent Glenn Gelbrich says that it’s a “diverse” budget, with good support for both operations and instruction. Kelso’s first day of school is Monday, August 31st.
Work starts today on a pavement restoration project on Talley Way in the industrial part of Kelso. The City of Kelso says that inspections, marking and other prep work has already been done; Lakeside Industries of Longview will start on the pavement project today. City officials say that work will be done during daylight hours, and should be done by the 28th of this month. They say that streets MUST be clear of vehicles to complete these repairs; notices will be distributed and posted when work is planned, but vehicles not moved could be towed at the owner’s expense. Traffic disruptions are also possible; detours will be posted. They say that “every reasonable effort” will be made to preserve access for local residents. Call the City of Kelso at 577-3377 if you have questions, or if you need more information.