Archive for the ‘Local News’ Category

Port Commission

July 30th, 2014

A couple of weeks after it was announced that lease negotiations between the Port of Longview and Haven Energy were far apart, it now appears that progress is being made in the effort to locate a butane and propane export facility at the Port of Longview. At yesterday’s Port Commission hearing, Executive Director Geir Kalhagen says that talks continue, with the focus still on what’s going to be best for the Port of Longview. Kalhagen says that the port is now in the process of responding to Haven’s rebuttal of the initial lease offer presented by the port, and they hope to have some additional communications in hand by next week. It was pointed out that Haven has already exercised a second four-month option on the proposed site, so they remain interested. The Port of Longview is moving ahead with its portion of environmental review, approving a contract with Parsons Brinkerhoff to examine four phases connected to development of the export facility. That’s expected to cost as much as two million dollars, with the majority of that cost to be borne by Haven Energy.

Street Work

July 30th, 2014

You need to be aware of nighttime lane closures on Ocean Beach Highway between 9th Avenue and Washington Way, as a sewer main replacement project continues. Starting tonight at 8 pm, the westbound lanes of Ocean Beach Highway will be closed between Washington Way and 9th Avenue, a closure that will remain in place until 9 am tomorrow morning. Similar nighttime closures are planned tomorrow night, also continuing Monday through Friday night through August 15th. Detours will be posted, and access to businesses in that area will be maintained. To avoid possible congestion, you may want to find an alternate route around this work zone.

Work continues on the sewer lining project that’s tying up traffic on 15th Avenue between Hemlock and Florida Street, work that is expected to go through all of next week. Contractors have the left southbound lane of 15th Avenue shut down between Hudson Street to Florida Street as this work proceeds; both directions of Hemlock Street are restricted to right turns only at 15th Avenue. Business access is being maintained, but left turns out of businesses fronting the 15th Avenue work zone will be prohibited. Detours are posted, and you’ll want to use alternate routes to avoid delays.

Traveling Wall

July 30th, 2014

The Vietnam Traveling Wall is scheduled to arrive today in Lewis County, with plans to have the 370-foot memorial open for visits tomorrow through Sunday. The wall is an 80-percent-sized replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial that is located on the National Mall in Washington, D. C., containing the names of all of the American men and women who died while serving in the Vietnam War. The Vietnam Traveling Wall will be on display at the Veterans Memorial Museum in Chehalis, just off of I-5.

River Vigil

July 30th, 2014

Sunday evening, the Cowlitz Indian Tribe invites you to come by Willow Grove Park as they hold a vigil to pray for the health of the Columbia River. The tribe’s spiritual leader, Roy Wilson, will lead the vigil, which will also include a canoe ceremony, a blessing of the river, drumming and dancing. You’re also invited to bring a dish for the potluck and salmon dinner that’s planned. Participants will also be allowed to offer their own prayers, poems or stories about the Columbia River, and they’ll also have fun stuff for the kids to do. This is one of several vigils that tribes are planning all along the length of the Columbia, which also mesh with the resumption of US-Canadian negotiations over the river’s flow. Sunday’s vigil is scheduled to start at 5:30 Sunday evening, and is open to all. Call St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church at 423-5600 if you have any questions.

Clatskanie Stabbing

July 29th, 2014

Tracy Mitchell, 40, of Clatskanie is under arrest on first-degree assault charges, after she allegedly stabbed her husband yesterday during a domestic dispute. Columbia County Sheriff Jeff Dickerson says that Deputies were dispatched to a home on Co-op Road, after getting a report that there was a disturbance at that location. They learned that Tracy Mitchell had supposedly stabbed James Mitchell, 43, during a fight, and that she was now driving him to the hospital. Deputies found and stopped the Mitchell’s car, also calling paramedics to the scene. James Mitchell was taken to Saint John Medical Center, where he underwent surgery and then was released. Tracy Mitchell is now being held in the Columbia County Jail on charges of first-degree assault, first-degree burglary and menacing. Dickerson says that the investigation is continuing, as the stabbing apparently took place at the home of a “third party,” not where the Mitchell’s live.

Shoplifter Hit

July 29th, 2014

The chase of a suspected shoplifter ended abruptly yesterday afternoon at the Kelso Safeway store, when the suspect was hit by a car in the parking lot of the store. Kelso Police say that this incident took place shortly before 1 pm, when Joshua Peter Brochu, 33, supposedly tried to make off with two pairs of socks. As Loss Prevention started to give chase, Brochu reportedly jumped on a bike and started to ride off. He was then hit by a car, suffering injuries to his left leg, a bloody nose, and chest pain. Brochu was treated at St. John Medical Center, and is now being held in the Cowlitz County Jail on a third-degree theft charge, along with two no-bail contempt of court warrant.

No Charges

July 29th, 2014

Authorities in Lewis County say that no charges will be filed against Jack Ritter, 56, of Salkum, after a fatal shooting that took place at his home back in May. The Centralia Chronicle reports on the resolution of this incident, which took place at Ritter’s home on May 10th. Travis Paul Shive, 28, had gone to the house to confront Ritter over the shooting of Shive’s dog. Deputies say that Ritter had nothing to do with the shooting of the dog, something that Ritter and others in the neighborhood had tried to tell Shive. Ritter had armed himself with a semi-automatic pistol, and when Shive saw the gun, he got into a physical struggle with Ritter. During that fight, Ritter was able to shoot Shive in the chest, causing a fatal wound. Lewis County Prosecutor Jonathan Meyer says that the investigation shows that Shive was the aggressor, and that the shooting happened in self-defense.

River Recovery

July 29th, 2014

Lewis County Search and Rescue is working on the recovery of the body of a Port Orchard teen who drowned in a river near Mount Rainier back on July 4th. The 17 year-old was with a group of friends near the Cedar Grove Campground, near the National Park entrance; the victim was taking some pictures when he fell into the fast-moving river, and was swept away. The teen was caught in an eddy, but wasn’t able to reach a stick that the friends tried to extend to him. The teen was swept downstream, and his body wasn’t located until Sunday, by a group of kayakers heading downstream. The body is located in an extremely difficult area to reach; it took two hours for search teams to get down to the site where the body is located. At this time, they have not reported on the completion of the recovery effort.

Longview School Hires

July 29th, 2014

The Longview School District is announcing the appointment of two teachers as interim assistant principals. Olympic Elementary School teacher John Gourley is being moved into the assistant principal position at the neighboring Monticello Middle School, following the resignation of Kevin Palena. Instructional Coach Lori Larson will also take an interim position as the assistant principal at Mount Solo Middle School, after Matthew Kesler also resigned. Both Palena and Kesler plan to take jobs closer to their homes in Clark County. Patrick Kelley is moving into the position as Broadway Special Education Principal, while Mary Carr-Wilt will now work full-time as Early Learning Director, and will also coordinate federal programs.

History Award

July 29th, 2014

A homeschooler from the remote northwest Oregon town of Timber ranked among the top competitors at the National History Day competition, held last month in our nation’s capitol. Olivia Winter received an Honorable Mention in the competition, presenting a documentary on the Tillamook Burn, a program titled “Out of the Ashes: The Inferno that Changed the Heart of Oregon.” Winter says that she was proud to represent Oregon at the event, also saying that it was a valuable experience for her and for other students. Entries for the next History Day competition are now being taken by the Oregon Historical Society. The theme for the upcoming competition is “Leadership and Legacy in History.” Get full details on the program by going to the Oregon Historical Society website.