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Mar 23 2020 thru Mar 29 2020

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FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 28
As Oregon stations lose workers, plea to lift self-service gas ban is answered
As COVID-19 spread in Oregon, workers at gas stations increasingly were reluctant to pump gas and have contact with customers. On Saturday, state officials lifted the ban on self-service fueling to ensure essential workers could get gas.
CORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 28
THE LATEST: Coronavirus news from around Oregon and the NW
ROUNDUP: Get all the latest local and regional news coverage from Salem Reporter and other news organizations in one place.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 28
State clears way for self-service gasoline across Oregon - for now
Under new rules announced Saturday, Salem drivers can fuel their vehicles on their own as Oregon becomes a self-service state through at least April 11.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 27
Salem-Keizer will let students borrow district laptops during school closure
Wi-fi hotspots for students without Internet access are also on order as tens of thousands of local students are stuck at home with little idea if classes will resume this school year.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 27
Facebook becomes Salem's top live music venue during the quarantine
Salem musicians connect with fans and make some much-needed cash as the ban on public gatherings stretches on.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 27
As southeast Salem food pantries close, teachers step up to feed families
About 10 Marion Polk Food Share pantries have closed during the COVID-19 pandemic, so the food share has paired up with the Salem-Keizer School District to distribute food out of local schools instead.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 27
State Transportation HQ in Salem shuttered after employee tests positive for coronavirus
The state Transportation Department notified employees Thursday evening that an employee in the agency's headquarters building in downtown Salem had tested positive for COVID-19. The agency closed the building on Friday.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 26
Kaiser begins COVID-19 testing at North Lancaster clinic
Kaiser Permanente can process COVID-19 test kits at a Portland lab and is now testing patients referred by a doctor or public health agency at one Salem clinic.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 26
Homeless person in Salem quarantined in motel after testing positive for COVID-19
The Mid-Willamette Valley Community Action Agency is working on getting people into motels after the first case of COVID-19 has found its way into the community’s homeless population, considered to be the most vulnerable to contracting the virus.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 26
Oregon attorney general targets four stores for excessive price hikes of essentials during outbreak
The Justice Department has sent letters to four convenience stores, three in the Salem area and one in Portland, in response to multiple complaints. The department expects more.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 26
New numbers give another worrying glimpse into coronavirus outbreak's impact on Oregon's economy
Unemployment claims in Oregon have risen sharply in recent weeks as restaurants, schools and other employers shed workers. Grocery stores and distribution companies remain bright spots.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 26
Home from school, Salem family makes "Quarantine Cuisine" videos to pass the time
Karson Kidd-Owen, 9, and his younger brother Korbin star in a home YouTube baking series filmed in their central Salem kitchen. Their dads said they want to make self-isolating fun, not traumatic, for their sons.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 26
Local homeless organizations need your help with cleaning supplies, food
Here are ways you can contribute to people who need food, socks or tents as COVID-19 further restricts access to some homeless services and leaves many shelters at capacity.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 26
‘It was unlike any shift I’ve ever worked’ - a Salem Health emergency room doctor describes work after COVID-19
Trevor Phillips returned to work Sunday after a two-week hiatus in which a lot had changed at the hospital since COVID-19 spread throughout the community.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 26
Salem Health runs out of hospital mask sewing kits in half an hour
So many Salem residents showed up looking to help the hospital by sewing masks that police had to come direct traffic. The kit distribution, scheduled for four hours over two days, ended after workers gave out kits for 10,000 masks.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 26
THE LATEST: News from around Oregon, the NW on the outbreak
ROUND UP: Get all the latest local and regional news coverage from Salem Reporter and other news organizations in one place to stay up to date on developments across Oregon.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 25
Two Cherriots drivers test positive for COVID-19
Salem’s transit agency confirmed two of its drivers have been confirmed infected with the disease but otherwise would provide no information to the public about which routes were involved.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 25
Running low on supplies, Salem Health stops coronavirus testing at clinics, emergency room
Salem's largest healthcare provider said it can't continue testing patients for flu or COVID-19 until supplies are re-stocked.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 25
Marion County confirms 55 people infected with COVID-19, Oregon's second-highest count
Salem-area residents confirmed to have COVID-19 include a Cherriots bus driver and classroom aide at a local elementary school. County and state health officials have been slow to explain the high number of local patients.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 25
With tears and pounds of sliced meat and cheese, Cozzie’s NY Deli closes its doors in response to the coronavirus outbreak
Opening Cozzie’s NY Deli was both a dream and a leap of faith for a Salem couple. Despite its glowing reviews and awards, the eatery is the latest to close as a consequence of the coronavirus outbreak. Its owners hope the closure is temporary.
FreeSTATE NEWS March 25
Oregon taxpayers get reprieve to July 15 to file personal returns with the state
Gov. Kate Brown says that the deadline for returns is extended to July, quarterly payments on 2020 taxes will still be due starting April 15. A legislator's comment about cash-flow problems for the state drew a sharp rebuke from Sen. Tim Knopp, R-Bend.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 25
Cherriots driver tests positive for COVID-19
The transit agency has released limited information but said it's sanitized buses multiple times since the driver worked on Friday, March 13.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 25
Justice in Salem is changing - inmates still have their day in court, divorces and evictions wait
Life is Salem has changed drastically in recent weeks as officials attempting to curb the spread of COVID-19 have shut down many businesses, playgrounds and social gatherings across the state. But in Marion County, inmates at the jail still have a right to trial and attorneys must keep showing up to work, be it in person or by phone in some cases.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 25
To address rumors surrounding new restrictions, Oregon State Police releases FAQ sheet
The Oregon State Police, Marion County Sheriff's Office and Salem Police Department have been fielding questions about how new restrictions intended to limit the spread of COVID-19 are impacting residents' ability to go to work or keep their kids from congregating at skateparks.
Oregon politics March 25
How the collapse of the 2020 legislative session could shape this fall's election and state politics
With deepening political divide, the approaching election could provide the verdict on who was right in the 2020 Legislature.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 24
With volunteers told to stay home, Salem meal home delivery service needs help
NorthWest Senior and Disability Services, a partnership between local governments that serves seniors and adults with physical disabilities in five counties, has seen an increased demand for home-delivered meals in recent weeks. But its regular volunteers haven't been able to help.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 24
THE LATEST: News from around Oregon, the NW on the outbreak
DIGEST: Get all the latest local and regional news coverage from Salem Reporter and other news organizations in one place.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 24
Oregon childcare providers must prioritize essential workers or close, state says
A new state order Tuesday caused confusion among Salem-area childcare providers who say they want to remain open to serve local families. Meanwhile, the Salem-Keizer School District is now running emergency child care for families with health workers and first responders.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 24
In Salem area, police plan to be educators about state's new stay home order
With Gov. Kate Brown issuing more stringent directives, more Salem businesses are closing and government agencies are locking their doors. Police, charged with enforcing the order, say they are going to take a light touch - for now.
SALEM CITY GOVERNMENT March 24
Salem adopts sit-lie ban a week after emergency declaration cleared downtown streets of homeless people
The Salem City Council on Monday banned sitting or lying on sidewalks from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. in an attempt to roust homeless people from under downtown awnings. The vote came a week after councilors voted to ban loitering in public places and gatherings of two or more people for the next five weeks in an attempt to slow the spread of COVID-19.
CORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 23
Watch the Oregon National Guard set up a mobile hospital
Soldiers, working with the Oregon Health Authority, set up a temporary 250-bed medical facility at the Oregon State Fairgrounds in Salem late last week to house non-coronavirus patients in recovery and free up hospital beds.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 23
Governor quits pleading, directs Oregonians to stay home and more businesses to close
Gov. Kate Brown issued a new executive order that will stop even the most modest social gathering and will force a whole new range of businesses to hang up their "Closed" signs. The order adds to the upending of life in Oregon as the state confronts the COVID-19 disease.
FreeCORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK March 23
In Salem, more lights going out as restaurants close, government agencies lock the doors
As the state waits for Gov. Kate Brown's next orders, officials in Marion County shut down their offices while more businesses decide it's time to hang up the "Closed" sign.

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