Local News That Matters

UPDATES: Nine Salem schools will serve free meals for kids all summer

June 17, 2021 at 3:10pm

OHA offers $100 grocery gift cards at upcoming Covid vaccine events in Marion, Polk counties

Agnes Tsai draws up a dose of the Pfizer vaccine during a COVID-19 vaccine clinic at the Oregon State Fairgrounds on Thursday, Jan. 28. (Amanda Loman/Salem Reporter)

Two upcoming Covid vaccination events in the Salem area come with an extra incentive - a $100 gift card to Safeway or Fred Meyer for people receiving their first shot.

On Friday, June 18, the first 100 people to get a first dose vaccine at Western Oregon University in Monmouth will get a $100 Safeway gift card, Salem Health said in a news release. The Oregon Health Authority is providing the gift cards to encourage people to get vaccinated.

Salem Health will offer vaccines at Western Oregon University in the Pacific Room from 9 a.m to 4:30 p.m. People can make an appointment or walk-in until 4 p.m.

On Saturday, June 19, the first 500 people to get a first dose of Covid vaccine at the Oregon State Fairgrounds in Salem will receive a $100 Fred Meyer gift card. The clinic is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Drivers should enter the fairgrounds on Sunnyview Road.

No appointment, identification or proof of insurance is required to receive a vaccine, and vaccines are free whether or not someone has health insurance. People who want to make an appointment for a specific time or learn more can visit the Salem Health website.

Both events will have Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson vaccines available. The Pfizer vaccine is the only Covid vaccine approved for people ages 12-17. The Johnson and Johnson vaccine requires only one dose.

Chemeketa Community College is also hosting a drive-through vaccine clinic Saturday, June 19 from 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. in the Blue Lot of its Salem campus. People can also walk up to the site.

Vaccines provided by Salem Health will be available for first doses, as well as second doses for people vaccinated at a May 29 event.

No gift cards will be distributed at the Chemeketa event.

Correction: This article misstated the time of the WOU clinic. It begins at 9 a.m., not 8:30 a.m.

-Rachel Alexander

June 17, 2021 at 1:50pm

Salem not impacted by chlorine supply shortage, city says

A 2.5 acre filter pond at the water treatment faclity on Geren Island on Monday, May 10, 2021. (Amanda Loman/Salem Reporter)

After a chlorine production facility in Longview, Washington temporarily shut down, the city of Salem is swatting down rumors that the shortage is impacting the local drinking water supply.

Salem treats water from the Santiam River before it heads into local taps and chlorine is added at the end to ensure no bacteria enters the water stream. The city has an onsite chlorine generator capable of producing about 2,000 pounds of chlorine per day.

“Because we produce our own chlorine, Salem’s drinking water will not be affected by the temporary closure of the Washington plant,” the city said in a news release. 

-Saphara Harrell

June 17, 2021 at 12:01pm

More time for landlords to apply for financial help to cover unpaid rent

Oregon State Capitol (Caleb Wolf/Special to Salem Reporter)

With millions of dollars remaining in a state fund to help beleaguered landlords and tenants, Oregon Housing and Community Services has extended the deadline to apply for financial assistance. 

The application deadline for the Landlord Compensation fund is now Wednesday, June 23, at 11:59 p.m. The $200 million fund was created by the Legislature to help cover the back rents of tenants who’ve lost jobs and income because of the pandemic. 

The program’s third round opened on June 1 and offered $60 million in aid. Landlords that qualify can receive up to 80% of rent owed from April 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021. Under this round, landlords can apply for funds to cover former renters. 

Oregon Housing and Community Services is encouraging tenants to still pay their July rent as they wait for assistance to avoid eviction. Oregon’s eviction moratorium is set to expire on June 30. 

More information on the fund and how to apply can be found on Oregon Housing and Community Services website

-Jake Thomas

June 17, 2021 at 11:14am

Free summer meals for kids start Monday at local schools

Four Corners Elementary lunch lady Tricia Frye loads up a bag for Hudson Siemens, a first-grade student, during a COVID-19 school closure on March 25, 2020 (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Kids and teens in the Salem area can pick up free meals daily at local schools starting Monday, June 21.

With school out for the summer, meal distribution is shifting to nine schools in the Salem-Keizer School District through September 4.

Each will offer a free, bagged meal to-go from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. for anyone 18 or under. No identification is required, and students don't need to be enrolled in the district to receive food.

The participating schools are:

Chavez Elementary (southeast Salem)

Claggett Creek Middle School (Keizer)

Gubser Elementary (Keizer)

Judson Middle School (south Salem)

North Salem High School (north Salem)

Salem Heights Elementary (south Salem)

Waldo Middle School (northeast Salem)

Walker Middle School (west Salem)

Wright Elementary (south Salem)

The Oregon Department of Education has a list of other summer meal sites around the state available on its website on a searchable map a text list. Families can also call 211 for information about local meal sites or text "Food" or "Comida" to 877-877 to get information about nearby meals.

More information about Salem-Keizer meals is available on the district website.

-Rachel Alexander

June 17, 2021 at 11:13am

Pedestrian hit and killed on Interstate 5 Thursday

A semi-trailer driver hit and killed a pedestrian on Interstate 5 near milepost 267 outside Woodburn Thursday morning.

Oregon State Police said Jeri Sherrod, 63, of Salem, was standing in the northbound lane of Interstate 5 when hit by a semi-trailer driven by 57-year-old Donald Cagle around 1:06 a.m.

Police said there were numerous calls to 911 about a person in the lane before Sherrod was hit.

Northbound Interstate 5 was shut down for five hours. 

-Saphara Harrell