Measure 30 ballots go to voters

January 21

Hood River County Elections Supervisor Lee Shissler is expecting a large volume of mail ballots to be returned for the Feb. 3 special election.

“This is a statewide election and there has been quite a bit of publicity on the issue because it involves taxes so I think we could see a high turnout,” he said.

Shissler anticipates that between 65-75 percent of the county’s 10,500 registered voters could mark their ballots on Measure 30.

Voters are being asked to weigh in on the $800 million tax package approved last summer by the Oregon Legislature. Opponents of the temporary income tax surcharge and higher corporate taxes gained the necessary 50,000 signatures to bring the issue before citizens.

Shissler said because the measure involves a statewide decision, Hood River County will be reimbursed for about $8,000 that will be spent on the election. The county paid $8,840 out of its own funds to print and process ballots for two local citizen initiatives regarding land-use that were brought before voters last November.

All mail ballots are due back into the Records and Assessment office on the third floor of the Dean Building or at Cascade Locks City Hall by 8 p.m. on Feb. 3.

Shissler said postmarks do not count and a drop slot is available for added convenience at the front entrance of the county offices at 601 State Street.

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Lawnmower torches Arbor Vitae on Portland Drive

The riding lawn mower driven by Norma Cannon overheated and made contact with dry arbor vitae owned by Lee and Norma Curtis, sending more than a dozen of the tightly-packed trees up in flames. The mower, visible at far right, was totaled. No one was injured; neighbors first kept the fire at bay with garden hoses and Westside and Hood River Fire Departments responded and doused the fire before it reached any structures. Westside Fire chief Jim Trammell, in blue shirt, directs firefighters. The video was taken by Capt. Dave Smith of Hood River Fire Department. Enlarge

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