City to hear support for plastic bag bill

Feb. 12, 2011

The billowing political issue of plastic bags comes Hood River City Council's direction when it meets Monday starting at 6 p.m.

The council will hear a request from David Skakel, solid waste specialist of the Tri-County Hazardous Waste and Recycling Program, to support SB 536 which prohibits the use of single-use plastic checkout bags in Oregon. Under the bill, retailers would have to charge a 5-cent deposit on paper bags.

The council meeting will be the second one this week. The council met in special session Monday at noon to deal with the necessary steps in the $28-million water line project.

The council approved a $12,219,570 bid to low bidder Moore Excavation for phase two of the project, set to start as early as mid-March. In phase two, another 12 miles will be replaced, in two sections north of Dee, as well as an upgrade to the reservoir at Dee and a seismic upgrade for the 15 miles of line.

The $3.5-million phase one of the project, replacing three miles of line, started in April 2010 and is scheduled to be completed in March.

Also on Monday's agenda:

Fire Chief Devon Wells will report on the 2010 SAFER Grant received by the city. "SAFER" stands for Staffing Adequate Fire and Emergency Response. The SAFER Grant is a federal grant administered by the Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency.

In the 7 p.m. regular session, the council will consider an approval to go out to bid for fire station renovations, a bond-funded project approved by voters in 2009.

Also on the work session agenda, the council will consider an agreement with PacifiCorp for the Indian Creek Lift Station Project; the city needs to acquire a permanent easement for locating the lift station on PacifiCorp property and a temporary construction easement for constructing the lift station and stockpiling materials on the property.

This project is part of the city's capital improvement plan and is needed to be completed to accept the additional flows that are a result of the county's Windmaster sewer project.

According to City Manager Bob Francis, the project is also necessary to reduce the risk of sewage flowing into the Indian Creek from the main line that is currently located along Indian Creek Trail.

The council will also consider extension of the city's franchise agreement between the city and Charter Communications (Falcon Cablevision), which is due to expire March 16.

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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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