Sherman County eNews #100


  1. Sherman County Court Notes, April 5

  2. Ethics and Integrity

  3. Retired Educators Offer Scholarship

  4. Wasco United Methodist Church Holy Week Services

  5. Employment Related Day Care Program Assists Working Families

  6. Getting a Handle on What We Feel

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

Civilization is not inherited; it has to be learned and earned by each generation anew; if the transmission should be interrupted for one century, civilization would die, and we should be savages again. –Will and Ariel Durant

1. Sherman County Court Notes, April 5

ShermanCoLogo~ By Administrative Assistant Lauren Hernandez

(This is a brief summary of topics addressed and is not official minutes. For official minutes and details, please see the official approved minutes posted after the April 19 court session on the Sherman County website at

The Sherman County Court met in regular session on April 5, 2017, and in conducting the business of the county,

  • heard a quarterly report from Sheriff Brad Lohrey; the first two months of the year presented crashes and hazardous weather conditions; the Sheriff’s Department is currently hiring for a new deputy; the biggest obstacle to hiring is the housing shortage;
  • heard a quarterly report from Emergency Services Director Shawn Payne; Sherman County Ambulance received a grant for 12 LED cardiac monitors; a chest compression system was purchased, which will help with consistent compressions;
  • heard a quarterly report from Sherman Public/School Library Director Marylou Martin; Marylou presented photographs and details about projects and programs at the library over the last year; the library has finalized a new logo; the school merger has been successful, and library employees and school staff work well as a team; the library roof was inspected, and the report is being generated;
  • heard a quarterly report from Road Master Mark Coles; Apex Auto and Truck Repair would like an approach on Lone Rock across from the Burnet Building; the site distance coming down from the fairgrounds is poor; Mark suggested getting a speed-zone study of the road; Lightspeed Networks submitted utility permits to run fiber down High School Loop to the school; Mark presented the 2017 Fund Exchange Agreement for Emigrant Springs Lane road improvements;
  • heard a quarterly report from Juvenile Director Amber DeGrange; her current caseload includes five delinquency and five dependency cases; Amber has been overseeing and working with the new prevention coordinator to plan for summer activities; the Early Learning Council site visit report will be back soon; the spring break county cleanup was successful, with 86 bags of garbage, six tires, a truckload of scrap metal, a dishwasher, and a wrought iron tub;
  • heard a Biggs Service District Water System Improvements Project update from Brad Baird, Anderson Perry & Associates; the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) funding application is still under review; the Engineers Joint Council Document Committee agreement will be signed by the court after County Counsel approval; there will be additional costs due to USDA funding, increasing the overall project budget by $72,800; this increase could increase the grant funds received and should not increase the county’s contribution total; the archaeological evaluation was conducted, and nothing of significance was found;
  • heard a quarterly report from District Attorney Wade McLeod; Wade will be attending the Child Abuse Summit in Portland; personnel has remained consistent for the last five years;
  • heard a quarterly report from Sherman County Historical Society & Museum Director, Patti Fields; Patti presented a calendar of events; over the last year, the museum had 2,100 visitors; the visitor’s center was upgraded to bike friendly; in anticipation of the eclipse, the museum will distribute pamphlets in 125 additional spots throughout the Columbia River Gorge; the museum received two grants from Sherman County Cultural Coalition and Sherman Development League; the museum will do an exhibit on Sherman County people with their cars;
  • heard from Justice of the Peace Ron McDermid that Paula King, Driver Education, will be retiring; Ron asked the court’s position on requesting letters of interest to see if any qualified candidates are interested in the position; the job has training requirements, and the schedule is based on what has been successful in the past; the court came to the consensus to approve Ron advertising the request for letters of interest for Sherman County Driver Education Program Coordinator/Instructor;
  • heard from Weed District Director Rod Asher a response letter to the weed ordinance violation letter was received; County Counsel Will Carey recommended taking no action until he has a chance to meet with Rod; during a future county court session, an executive session will be scheduled for Will and Rod to meet with the court, and directly after, a public session will be held to discuss the weed ordinance violation with concerned citizens;
  • approved the Intergovernmental Agreement between Mid-Columbia Economic Development District and Sherman County for consultant services in the Columbia Gorge Bi-State Renewable Energy Zone and authorized Judge Thompson to sign;
  • approved a contribution of $2,000 to the Association of Oregon Counties to be taken from the Education & Affiliation line item to help support the 2017 National Association of Counties Western Interstate Region Convention in Deschutes County;
  • approved the 2017 Fund Exchange Agreement between Oregon Department of Transportation and Sherman County for Emigrant Springs Lane road improvements;
  • approved a Memorandum of Understanding between Gilliam County and Sherman County for joint use of emergency management personnel, communications systems, facilities, and equipment when an emergency or disaster condition exists;
  • adopted the proposed Sherman County salary schedule to be effective July 1, 2017;
  • approved the expenditure of up to $500 for three cigarette butt containers and up to $2,000 for a D-130 Riding Lawn Mower for the Sherman County RV Park;
  • approved the expenditure of up to $1,800 for a life jacket loaner station at Giles French Park;
  • discussed the County Court Administrative Assistant temporary position, the life jacket kiosk at Giles French Park, a student civics funding request, the results from the Wasco Annex fuel tank pressure test, and the Resolution in Support of a Transportation Funding Package in the 2017 Legislative Session;
  • heard reports from court members about regional board activities.

2. Ethics and Integrity

An organization’s success depends on the integrity of its employees. We have all witnessed the severe problems that result in the personal, professional and political arena, when anyone, at any level, acts without integrity.  When an organization’s reputation is damaged, there ensues a tragic loss of both customers and good employees. Organizations of all types are now taking a proactive approach to preventing problems by offering trainings about ethics and integrity.

We found that clients seemed confused about the differences between ethics and integrity.

After reviewing the literature on these terms, we have defined ethics and integrity in a way people can understand and immediately use.  

Ethics: is an external system of rules and laws. Usually there are rewards when we follow the rules and punishments when we break them. A professional board or committee often monitors compliance. Many organizations have developed a code of ethics that employees are expected to obey. 

Integrity: is an internal system of principles which guides our behavior. The rewards are intrinsic. Integrity is a choice rather than an obligation. Even though influenced by upbringing and exposure, integrity cannot be forced by outside sources.  Integrity conveys a sense of wholeness and strength.   When we are acting with integrity we do what is right – even when no one is watching.

People of integrity are guided by a set of core principles that empowers them to behave consistently to high standards. The core principles of integrity are virtues, such as: compassion, dependability, generosity, honesty, kindness, loyalty, maturity, objectivity, respect, trust and wisdom. Virtues are the valuable personal and professional assets employees develop and bring to work each day.

The sum of all virtues equals integrity. There is a dynamic relationship between integrity and ethics, where each strengthens, or reinforces, the other.  Personal integrity is the foundation for ethics – good business ethics encourages integrity.  A person who has worked hard to develop a high standard of integrity will likely transfer these principles to their professional life. Possessing a high degree of integrity, a person’s words and deeds will be in alignment with the ethical standards of the organization.

The right thing to do is not always the easy thing.

It can be challenging for organizations to establish and then comply with their own ethical standards. Whether ethics are defined or not, employees at all levels experience pressures to act against ethical standards and counter to their own integrity.  Some say one thing and then, in the heat of battle, do another.  It takes awareness and courage to act in that moment; to hold out for a choice that is in alignment with the stated ethics of the organization and the integrity of those involved.

Integrity is what provides the inspiration to convert awareness into action.  The good news: There is intrinsic satisfaction in accessing courage at times when our integrity is tested.

~ Bob Czimbal and Michele Brooks, The Abundance Company

3. Retired Educators Offer Scholarship

Mid Columbia Unit 20 of the Oregon Retired Educators Association is offering a $750 scholarship to a 3rd, 4th or 5th year college student (as of this coming September) who aspires to become a teacher and is attending an Oregon school. Families must reside in Hood River, Wasco or Sherman counties. Application deadline is May 1. For an application and further information, contact Frank Wall, 541-354-1505,

4. Wasco United Methodist Church Holy Week Services

church.family1The Wasco United Methodist Church invites all to help us celebrate Holy Week.  We will begin Thursday night at 6:30 with our Maundy Thursday service where we will learn about the Jewish Passover feast, and will hear three members of our church give their testimonies.  Then on Sunday morning at 11:00 a.m. we will have our Easter Sunday service, where the children will start things off with their own words of encouragement, before heading outside to hunt for Easter eggs.  We will witness a baptism, hear a message from Pastor Bob, and then end the regular worship service with refreshments and fellowship.  We hope you can join us to celebrate the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.

5. Employment Related Day Care Program Assists Working Families

Help with paying childcare expenses is available now! The Employment Related Day Care (ERDC) program assists working families by paying some of their child care cost. Families are encouraged to apply now.

Parents, Foster parents or a caretaker who is working may be eligible for help. ERDC can also help cover child care for school hours if you are working and going to school.

Families who need help with the cost of child care are encouraged to apply at any Department of Human Services (DHS) office. There is an income limit for this program. A family of three with gross income of less than $3,149 per month could qualify. DHS child care payments are made directly to the provider on behalf of the family. Families who are eligible will still pay a portion of their child care costs.

Families who are receiving ERDC assistance can choose their child care provider. They can choose a provider who is already listed with DHS as an approved provider or they can list a new provider. This could be a family member, a friend or their current child care provider. If you would like more information on how to apply, or the location of the nearest DHS office, contact 211Info.

6. Getting a Handle on What We Feel

Why is it that so many people don’t know what to do with negative feelings? Today, let’s look at some research, collected at Rutgers University some time ago and is still relevant today, that may help explain the challenge.

In a study done with 10-week-old infants and their mothers, results indicated several things. First, our emotions are among the earliest signs of our awareness of patterns of meaning. Second, we naturally self-organize to seek out and become interested in positive feelings. Finally, negative feelings trigger negative responses.

Awareness of negative feelings, and perhaps even more importantly, the ability to channel them appropriately, is not something we are born with. It’s something we must learn. We don’t usually learn it from our parents though, because they didn’t learn it from their parents. We don’t learn it in school either. So what can we do?

Well, we can just go on denying our negative feelings, expressing them in ways that do damage to ourselves and to others. Dwelling on them just causes a downward spiral into depression where helpful information has a hard time getting through. On the other hand, we can seek out education that will teach us how to control what we think, and as a result, get a handle on what we feel.

It is our thoughts (psychological) that trigger feelings (expressed biologically), and there is much you can do to learn to think differently. The first step, on the road to changing the way we think, is to want to change. Once we have made that positive decision, we will see opportunity for the education we need all around us – perhaps as close as a click of a mouse. ~ The Pacific Institute

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

bird.owl.limbThe most famous book that takes place in every state

Things that money can’t buy: manners, morals, respect, character, common sense, trust, class, patience, integrity and love.

The Real Reason Behind Those Diamond Shapes on Measuring Tape

BPA Stops Wind Power Generation For The First Time In 4 Years

Oregon Business

Fort Walla Walla Museum

No apostrophes? It’s preposterous. Grammar series. 

Opinion. Charles Krauthammer: Karma, Precedent and the Nuclear Option

‘American Pickers’ comes to Oregon for its most expensive pick yet