OREGON STATE HOSPITAL Dec. 11
As Oregon State Hospital halts admissions due to coronavirus outbreak, staff shortage poses mounting challenges
Hospital administrators have quarantined ill patients, worked to trace the source of the outbreak and tried to address the similar rise in coronavirus cases among staff. But many employees say they are exhausted from the strain and increased responsibility stemming from staff shortages tied to COVID-19.
PUBLIC SAFETY Dec. 11
SPECIAL REPORT: Ten people were assaulted during August protests at the Capitol – police have yet to arrest
People were punched, kicked and shoved to the ground as a rally against Covid restrictions turned violent. Mostly Black victims have been left wondering why their assailants have not been prosecuted. Police say they investigated and the matter is now with prosecutors.
VOTE 2020 Dec. 11
One Salem resident will pick the next president, but thinks the process is out of date
Salem resident Sean Nikas is one of Oregon’s seven electors in the Electoral College. Nikas said it's exciting to serve as an elector and it's been a kick for his friends and family. But he thinks it's time for the institution to go.
LOCAL SPORTS Dec. 10
Volcanoes lose MLB affiliation with Giants
The partnership between the San Francisco Giants and the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes came to an end Wednesday when the Giants announced that the Eugene Emeralds would become their new Single-A affiliate.
SALEM COMMUNITY Dec. 10
Hospice volunteer sees the positive in the face of Covid precautions
Holly Collier has been volunteering with Willamette Valley Hospice for more than a decade and was able to quickly pivot to seeing the good as she donned protective gear to visit patients nearing the end of their lives.
LOCAL SCHOOLS Dec. 10
Salem-Keizer administrators plan overhaul of school discipline, safety with goal of reducing racial disparities
Six months after activists called for district leaders to remove police from schools, Salem-Keizer leaders are planning another round of community discussions - this time with an outside facilitator - to look at police, school discipline, threat assessments and other safety programs.
SALEM ECONOMY Dec. 10
Pandemic rules and smoke have meant a rough year for Oregon wineries
The closure of restaurants has had a ripple effect on Oregon's vineyards and wineries. While some have been able to pivot, new pandemic restrictions came during a "make or break" moment for many wineries.
SALEM BUSINESS Dec. 9
BUSINESS ROUNDUP: Economy talk, new market opens, Facebook gets sued and fire rebuilding relief
A state economist will give a talk on the Oregon economy. Lively Station to open up. Regulators have struck a deal with insurance companies over rebuilding timeline.
SALEM CITY GOVERNMENT Dec. 9
As Salem looks to address vulnerabilities brought on by climate change, state releases grim report
Salem’s Climate Action Plan Task Force will next consider how the city is vulnerable to climate change as the state released a report this week noting that communities of color will be most impacted by hotter temperatures, drought and wildfires.
SCHOOL BOARD Dec. 9
A divided Salem-Keizer School Board votes to allow chair to cut off “derogatory, name-calling” comments
Board chair Satya Chandragiri compared being on the receiving end of sometimes vitriolic public comments to “walking into a domestic violence relationship” and said the board’s goal is to urge those with dissenting viewpoints to be civil.
SALEM ECONOMY Dec. 9
GUEST COLUMN: As unemployment drops, women are also dropping out of the labor force
The pandemic-induced downturn has had a larger effect on women than men. There are two reasons for that.
AROUND OREGON Dec. 9
AROUND OREGON: Central Oregon leaders urge elementary students' return to classroom
Local leaders in the Bend area cite 'learning loss' in pressing Gov. Kate Brown to relax restrictions to get young students back in school.
SALEM SCHOOLS Dec. 8
Hoping athletes will have a chance to compete, Oregon shifts school sports schedule later in the year
Fall sports will start in February on a condensed six-week schedule with spring and winter activities to follow. Athletic directors are preparing for a return to practice and hoping athletes will be able to compete in.
SALEM COMMUNITY Dec. 8
Memorial service for Selma Pierce scheduled
Services for the well-known Salem resident long active in the community will be held Saturday at Salem First Christian Church. The service will be streamed online.
SALEM PEOPLE AND PLACES Dec. 8
Salem man digitizes thousands of historical records to help families find their history
Jim Moore, 72, a volunteer with FamilySearch, tracks his progress reviewing scans of Census records and marriage licenses with color-coded spreadsheets. He's so prolific he can sometimes recognize a century-old county clerk signature on sight.
FreeCOVID IN SALEM Dec. 8
Salem Hospital delays some elective surgeries as Covid hospitalizations rise
Patients scheduled for procedures requiring an overnight hospital stay, like hip or knee replacements, may need to wait. The hospital currently has 73 patients with Covid, up from a daily average of about 20 in early November.
EMERGENCY SERVICES Dec. 8
AROUND OREGON: Remote reservation fills critical gap in Malheur County rescue net
For years, residents of the Fort McDermitt Paiute-Shoshone Reservation had to wait for an ambulance to travel over 70 miles after calling 911. Now, a tribal emergency medical service can respond instead.
PUBLIC SAFETY Dec. 7
After two levy failures, Marion County Fire District 1 will lay off a dozen staff, close stations
Marion County Fire District 1 says response times will suffer when staffing cuts and closures take hold next year as a result of voters rejecting two levies that would have raised millions for the district.
LOCAL SCHOOLS Dec. 7
A year without school music ensembles means a long road to rebuilding
A strong music program with nationally-recognized bands and choirs has long been a point of pride for the Salem-Keizer School District. Music teachers are still teaching online and finding bright spots in solo work and new technology, but students and teachers alike miss the energy of playing and singing together.
SALEM BUSINESS Dec. 7
Despite the pandemic, Oregonians keep starting businesses
The state and national economy are in uncertain territory as the pandemic drags on. But business owners keep moving forward on projects. Numbers show that Oregonians, many of whom have had their livelihoods disrupted, continue to start new companies.