Resort map testimony will continue Feb. 5

The growing list of speakers seeking to comment on Hood River County’s draft destination resort map has necessitated the scheduling of a third hearing.

Time ran out on Wednesday before the Planning Commmission had gotten a little more than half way through the roster of 132 citizens scheduled to testify at the hearing, held at Hood River Middle School. In addition, 87 other people out of the estimated 400 audience members penciled in their names for time at the podium.

To accommodate those requests, the Commission will again convene at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday in the middle school auditorium. The hearing was moved there after an overflow crowd appeared at the first hearing, Jan. 22 in the Gorge Room of the Hood River Inn.

At the upcoming forum, the Commission will listen to three-minute presentations until 11 p.m. and then decide whether to schedule a fourth hearing to allow more comment or close the public hearing so that deliberations can begin on the proposed map. The appointed body is charged with recommending that the Hood River County Commission accept the map and accompanying ordinance in its entirety, adopt it with revisions, or reject it altogether.

The controversial map was developed by the consulting team of Cogan, Owens, Cogan after Mt. Hood Meadows, Ltd., made a formal request last July and paid the $8,300 fee for the work. The Portland-based consultants were warned by Planning Director Mike Benedict not to have any contact with Meadows during the independent study of potential sites or they would be fired. About 70 acres of Meadows’ Cooper Spur Mountain Resort property near Parkdale has been listed in the inventory along with three other private forest properties. Officials have also made the controversial move to include the majority of Mt. Hood National Forest lands within the county in case these later fell into private ownership through a land exchange.

At the onset of the mapping process, environmental and recreation groups from across the state formed to fight against inclusion of Meadows’ holdings on the map. The Cooper Spur Wild and Free Coalition, claiming 70,000 members, is opposed to commercial development on the north face of Mt. Hood because of potential damage to the Crystal Springs watershed, resources and wildlife habitat.

In turn, the Friends of Cooper Spur Mountain Resort, boasting 95,000 supporters, recently formed to advocate for an “environmentally-sensitive” Meadows development that would bring needed jobs to the economically-depressed county.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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