Sherman County eNews #69


  1. Notice. Mayor Vacancy: City of Rufus

  2. Impressions: Urban-Rural Gathering: Melting Mountains

  3. Notice. Sherman County School District Board Meeting, March 13

  4. Editorial. Frontier TeleNet: Withholding Public Records

  5. Letting Go of ‘I Can’t’

  6. Guided Camping Experience for Beginners at an Oregon State Park

  7. Links: Things to Think About & Things to Do

1.Notice. Mayor Vacancy: City of Rufus

The City of Rufus is seeking applications for City Council Mayor.  City of Rufus positions are elected and/or appointed by Council, when a vacancy occurs, until the next general election.

To qualify, candidates must reside within the City limits and be a registered voter in the City prior to submitting an application for appointment. Applications must be submitted to the Office of the City Recorder no later than 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, April 5th, 2017 to be considered.

Rufus City Council will conduct a public interview of candidates at its regular meeting of Wednesday, April 12, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. Rufus City Hall, 304 W. 2nd St, Rufus, Oregon 97050.

The appointee’s term shall begin immediately upon his/her appointment and term ending 12/31/18.  Applications may be obtained at City Hall, 304 W 2nd ST, Rufus Oregon 97050 ; phone 541-739-2321 or

 2. Impressions: Urban-Rural Gathering: Melting Mountains

Participants in the recent Urban-Rural Gathering: Melting Mountains were encouraged to share their impressions by answering these questions: What’s one thing you took away from Saturday’s event? What’s one thing you want to do next as a result of Saturday’s event? 

On Wednesday, the bloggers at THE EVERGREY posted very thoughtful and thought-provoking responses at  

3. Notice. Sherman County School District Board Meeting, March 13

The Sherman County School District Board of Directors will hold its Regular Board Meeting on Monday, March 13, 2017 at 7:00 p.m.  An Executive Session will precede the Regular Meeting at 6:00 p.m. pursuant ORS 192.660 (2)(i) to complete the annual evaluation of the Superintendent.  The meetings will be held in the Sherman County School/Public Library.


SchBdAgenda Board Meeting 3-14-17 page1

SchBdAgenda Board Meeting 3-14-17 page2 

4. Editorial. Frontier TeleNet: Withholding Public Records

pencil.sharpOur concerns have increased well beyond disappointment and disheartening as we follow Frontier TeleNet’s failures of process in planning, developing and implementing the fiber optic telecommunications system, fiber ownership and use, position development, contracting practices and legal notices.

We want Frontier TeleNet to succeed based on Oregon statute and their own bylaws.  Since its beginning, we have appreciated its success with construction of the Tri-County Communications tower system and telecommunications services.

For new eNews subscribers: An ORS 190 organization jointly held and operated by Sherman, Wheeler and Gilliam counties to provide public services, Frontier TeleNet is governed by our three county judges. The board has no office or website, and contracts with Rob Myers for general management, Mike Smith for marketing and Jeanne Burch for clerical and financial services.

Last July, local chatter inspired a review of Frontier TeleNet’s meeting minutes, 2015-current, and those of their partners, Sherman County Court, Gilliam County Court, Frontier Digital Network, Frontier Regional 911 Agency and North Central Education Service District (NCESD); Sherman County School District and City of Condon Fiber Committee minutes; East Oregonian legal notices; The Times-Journal; and relevant websites.

An October 20, 2016, request for specific Frontier TeleNet public records – with reminders in November, December and January – asked for legal notices, requests for qualifications/proposals, agreements and contracts regarding and/or between Windwave Communications and/or Windwave Technologies, Inc., Inland Development Corporation, Management Resources and Sherman County or Frontier TeleNet, and all legal notices, requests for qualifications/proposals, agreements and contracts regarding and/or between Rural Technology Group and Frontier TeleNet, Sherman County, Windwave Technologies, Inc., and/or Inland Development Corporation.

Frontier TeleNet produced nothing but apologies and excuses.

Inexperience, incompetence, stubbornness and deceit led Frontier Telenet to unethical and/or unlawful personal services contracting, North Central Education Service District’s request to withdraw from Frontier TeleNet, failure to collaborate or cooperate with Sherman County School District and internet service providers, denial of fiber access to internet service providers, attempts to interfere in the allocation of E-Rate dollars that follow internet services to schools and libraries, questionable lobbying relationships and withholding public records.

Whether careless, thoughtless or intentionally misleading, deceitful or unethical, this is serious. The current chaos cannot be a positive governing environment. It cannot be a positive learning environment for new or inexperienced county commissioners or employees complicit with or connected to Frontier TeleNet.

What can be done to restore law and order?

Assuming that the three Frontier TeleNet county courts want Frontier TeleNet to succeed, we suggest that they make time to:

  • Start again – there are qualified people out there who could step right in… and get a grip on things.
  • Assign new county representatives to the Frontier TeleNet board if necessary
  • Conduct an immediate review of Frontier TeleNet history and tri-county agreements, records and infrastructure
  • Conduct an immediate review of relevant statute and Frontier TeleNet bylaws and audit
  • Schedule professional consultants for a budget review and development of a business plan and a long-range strategic plan
  • Review the three contractors’ position descriptions and scopes of work
  • Conduct performance evaluations of the three contractors for measurable results
  • Act upon performance reviews by hiring qualified staff as results indicate
  • Secure Frontier TeleNet records and store them in a secure site.

Immediate action would re-gain public trust enough to turn Frontier TeleNet’s work into a partnership most would welcome and support.

So far we see no evidence in the record that the governing board has acknowledged the seriousness of their situation or the planned retirement of their long-time general manager. Since September Frontier TeleNet has failed to accurately explain their plans or actions. Since October it has failed to provide certain public records or explain why.

5. Letting Go of ‘I Can’t’

Here is a proposition for your consideration: Using the phrase, “I can’t” is actually contrary to what it means to be human.

Over the millennia of recorded human history, the story (so far) is one of progress or, at least, improvement of the human experience. Each “today” is better than yesterday, and each tomorrow is reflected in today’s hopes and dreams. We are constantly working toward something better. “I can’t” or “We can’t” simply gets in the way.

In the past, if we had allowed “I can’t” to get in the way, there would have been no sea trade by the Phoenicians; no Silk Road from Asia Minor to China; no “New World” to discover; no automobile, no telephone; and certainly no mobile phones or texting. There would have been no written language, no books, nor any music. You can completely forget space exploration, and the medical and scientific benefits we have received from that. You see, it is simply human nature to say, “I can.”

The history of the human species is a grand illustration of the need to grow, to achieve, to fulfill potential – to be better than before. Indeed, the need to constantly expand our knowledge and experience is uniquely human, as evidenced by the fact that no group of animals, fish or fowl have planned and carried out a mission to the moon or beyond – at least, not one we know of.

So, the next time you react to a challenge by saying, “I can’t,” stop yourself. Think again. Embrace all that makes you human, and ask yourself, “What if I could?” Because, you see, you can. Remember: Yesterday’s dreams are today’s realities. Today’s dreams are tomorrow’s opportunities.

It’s time to let go of the old “I can’t” habit, and seize the opportunities for growth and expansion of your life. ~ The Pacific Institute

6. Guided Camping Experience for Beginners at an Oregon State Park

campingThe Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) welcomes beginning campers to join in an overnight guided camping experience this summer at an Oregon state park. Registrations are now being accepted for the Let’s Go Camping program. Events will be held at nine different parks.

For $30 per family, OPRD provides tents, sleeping bags and other gear. Volunteers will help campers set up tents, build campfires, prepare meals in the campsite and more.

Activities could include ranger-led hikes, owl prowls, bat chats and plenty of s’mores.

Register for one of the following events by calling 800-551-6949. Most events are limited to 35 people and spots are filling quickly.

June 16-18: L.L.Stub Stewart
June 30-July 2: Deschutes River
July 7-9: Cascadia
July 14-16: Willamette Mission
July 21-23: Silver Falls
July 21-23: Prineville Reservoir
July 28-30: Ainsworth
August 11-13: Milo McIver
August 25-27: Champoeg
September 8-10: Memaloose

7. Links: Things to Think About & Things to Do

bird.owl3Top Universities for Forestry and Agriculture

Colleges of Agriculture at the Land Grant Universities

Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power. ~ Abraham Lincoln

The Unseen Humanitarian Effort behind Trump’s Wall