Sherman County eNews #174


  1. Oregon House sends bill establishing records request deadlines to Governor’s desk

  2. Sherman County Citizen-Reporter, June 2017

  3. Genealogy Jamboree Opportunities for October

  4. HHS announces over $70 million in grants to address the opioid crisis

  5. The Age-Old Question: Who am I?

  6. Oregon National Guard Youth ChalleNGe Graduation Ceremony, June 14

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

“Thinking about our country and your community. This is the basis of all civic engagement. Developing a well-informed opinion on issues that are important to you.  Focusing your efforts on your friends, so that they too think about the issues that affect us all. Publicly calling out your elected officials for their lies, evasions, and unwillingness to do anything useful if it is a threat to their corporate campaign contributions in the next cycle, and the next after that. Writing to the editor. Until they start to publish – this means you must research and know what you are saying.” ~ Karen Shackelford

1. Oregon House sends bill establishing records request deadlines to Governor’s desk

ORStateFlagSalem, Ore. – The Oregon House of Representatives today approved SB 481, legislation establishing deadlines for public agencies to meet when handling public records requests. Proponents of the bipartisan legislation, which was a product of Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum’s Public Records Task Force, touted the bill as a positive step forward in an ongoing effort to modernize Oregon’s public records laws.

“Oregon’s public records laws are antiquated and in serious need of a tune up,” said Rep. John Huffman (R-The Dalles), who served on the task force that developed the bill and has helped shepherd it through the legislative process. “By establishing statutory deadlines for government agencies to respond to records requests, we are taking a meaningful step forward in our efforts to promote access to public documents. While SB 481 is by no means a be-all-end-all reform bill, it is a good bill, and hopefully the first of several public records bills adopted this session.”

SB 481 requires government agencies to acknowledge records requests within five business days, and requires the records retrieval to be completed within 10 business days after the date of acknowledgement. The legislation allows agencies to exceed the statutory deadlines under certain circumstances, but requires the agency to issue the requester a written explanation for the delay along with an estimated date of completion. SB 481 also requires the Oregon Department of Justice to establish and maintain a public list of Oregon’s 550-plus public records exemptions.

In addition to SB 481, lawmakers are also considering SB 106, which would establish a public records advocate position within state government, as well as HB 2101, which would require lawmakers to regularly review and authorize Oregon’s long list of public records exemptions.

“I am hopeful that we can find a way to advance SB 106 and HB 2101 before the end of the session,” concluded Rep. Huffman. “Public access to government records is essential to maintaining public trust. It’s long past to bring our transparency laws into the 21st Century.”

SB 481 passed the House by a vote of 52-0. The bill now heads to Governor Brown’s desk, where it is expected to be signed into law.

2. Sherman County Citizen-Reporter, June 2017

Sherman County government’s newsletter is posted on line with information and news not found in the local press.  Artists will be interested in the front page.

3. Genealogy Jamboree Opportunities for October

The Columbia Gorge Genealogical Society will be having their annual Genealogy Jamboree on Oct. 21, 2017, at the Columbia Gorge Discovery Center. We had a great turnout last year with guests from the Sons of the American Revolution, DAR, Jan Bony from USGenWeb, and this year we are asking historical and library communities if they would like to participate with informational tables displaying what you have to offer the genealogy community at our event. If you would like to participate, would like more information or have questions, please contact me.

Georga Foster, President, Columbia Gorge Genealogical Society


4. HHS announces over $70 million in grants to address the opioid crisis

American flag2Greg Walden applauds $70 million in grants to combat opioid crisis

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Rep. Greg Walden (R-Hood River), Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, today applauded the recent announcement of over $70 million to help local communities combat the opioid epidemic and provide treatment for opioid use disorder. This funding is authorized by the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA), which originated in the Energy and Commerce Committee and was signed into law last year.

“Combatting the opioid epidemic in Oregon and across the country is going to require an all-hands-on-deck approach, and funding such as this is crucial to winning this fight,” said Walden. “Opioid abuse is an equal opportunity destroyer in our state, where more Oregonians die from drug overdoses each year than car accidents. This funding will go directly to those who have been on the frontlines in this battle by providing support to prevention and treatment initiatives in our local communities. I am encouraged by the administration’s commitment to addressing this nationwide epidemic, and will continue my efforts in Congress to putting an end to this crisis in Oregon once and for all.”

As Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Walden has been at the forefront of responding to the epidemic. Recently, Oregon was awarded $6.5 million to combat the opioid crisis as part of the 21st Century Cures Act, which Walden supported along with the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act. Walden’s committee continues to look at all aspects of the fight against opioid abuse. Walden led a hearing in April  examining the federal government’s response to fentanyl, a potent synthetic opioid that reportedly killed 49 Oregonians in 2014 and 2015.

The $70 million in grant funding will be administered through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). For more information on specific funding opportunities and how to apply for these grants, please click here. 

 5. The Age-Old Question: Who am I?

“Who am I?”  This age-old question is one of the most important you will ever ask or answer. And, while you are answering that question, another similar, but substantially different, question might present itself: What parts of yourself do you keep secret from others?

What do you do when you are alone that you would rather no one find out about? Do you read trashy novels, talk to your plants, or consume ice cream by the quart? Do you indulge in self-destructive activities like illegal drugs or excessive alcohol use? Do you use language you would be embarrassed to have overheard, or let the dishes pile up in the sink for days?

If you do things you would not want anyone to find out about, another question is likely to present itself: What do you do about that part of yourself that abhors both the behavior and the deceit? Do you have to ignore part of yourself in order to keep your secret? What does it cost you to do that?

Some secrets are just a harmless way to have privacy. Others are terribly destructive. They undermine relationships and cause us to lose self-respect. It is impossible to be a whole and happy person as long as we believe there are parts of ourselves that are so unacceptable we have to keep them hidden.

While we are on the subject, here are a few more questions that might need to be answered by each of us: What price do you pay to keep your secrets? Do these secrets stop you from being the person you would most like to be? How might you benefit from being more open or eliminating certain behaviors altogether?

Our answers may not come quickly, and some may cause painful emotions when the answers finally arrive. But these questions are important in answering the ultimate question, “Who am I?” And they are even more important when the next question comes: “Who do I want to be?” ~The Pacific Institute  

6. Oregon National Guard Youth ChalleNGe Graduation Ceremony, June 14

BEND, Oregon — The Oregon National Guard Youth ChalleNGe Program (OYCP) is scheduled to host a graduation ceremony for its 53rd class on June 14, at 11 a.m. at the Deschutes County Fair and Expo Center, Middle Sister Building, 3800 SW Airport Way, Redmond, OR.

The graduation ceremony honors 131 students from several different high schools across Oregon. OYCP is a statewide, accredited alternative high school that serves all of Oregon and features a rigorous five-and-a-half-month in residence phase followed by a year of active mentorship.

“We are so grateful for our educators and staff, as well as filled with pride for each and every individual graduate and their efforts. Congratulations to all for this success,” said Dave Stuckey, Deputy Director for the Oregon Military Department.

The ceremony is expected to draw hundreds of family members, friends and community supporters of the graduating cadets from across the state. The event is open to the public and media is invited to attend.

About OYCP:
OYCP is one of 37 nationwide National Guard Youth ChalleNGe Programs and has been recognized as one of the premier programs in the country. The OYCP program is cost-free to cadets and their families and has successfully graduated more than 4,600 cadets since its inception in 1994. The voluntary, 17-and-a-half-month program provides youth who are at-risk of not completing their high school education, both male and female, ages 16 to 18, from urban and rural areas of Oregon, with another opportunity to succeed.

Cadets work through a two-phase program, beginning with an intensive five-and-a-half-month residential program during which they develop life-coping skills, perform volunteer community service work and attend academic classes. While in the program, cadets continue their education, develop life skills and create a plan, outlining clear and organized steps to keep them along the path of success following graduation. The second phase of the program consists of one year of mentorship. During this phase, cadets receive encouragement and support as they implement their plans to re-enter their home environments.

Details about the Oregon National Guard Youth ChalleNGe Program are available at or by calling (541) 317-9623. 

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

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