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Members of the community come out to sign recall petition filed against Kate Brown

Volunteer Debbie Dage had a message as she greeted people lining up in front of the Roseburg post office Thursday to sign a petition to recall Oregon Gov. Kate Brown.

“Let’s get this done, people! We are not going to rest! This is day two of the rest of our lives!” Dage said.

The petition from the group known as Flush Down Kate Brown is behind one of two recall petitions that were filed Monday with the Oregon Secretary of State’s office. The Republican Party of Oregon filed the other. To force a special recall election, each campaign must collect 280,050 valid signatures within a 90-day period.

If enough signatures are certified, the governor has five days to either resign or prepare a statement to include on the ballot for the recall election, according to the Oregon Secretary of State website.

Annika Carlston, a spokeswoman for Flush Down Kate Brown, said her group is taking a wait-and-see attitude on both campaigns.

“I do believe that we both have different reasons for doing our own separate recalls,” Carlston said. “We’re just going to see who can do what.”

Bruce Wentworth and Susie Wentworth, of Glide, said they signed the petition Thursday because they do not agree with some of Brown’s policies.

“As far as specifics, I can’t think of any. But I can’t think of any she’s done right, so how’s that?” Bruce Wentworth said.

Charles Avitable, of Roseburg, said he signed the recall petition because Brown doesn’t hold to the same Christian values he does.

“I know part of my Christian values probably aren’t popular because I don’t believe in abortion, I don’t believe in same-sex marriage,” Avitable said. “The whole putting God first thing, she doesn’t seem to have anything to do with.”

Scotty Ingeman, of Tenmile, said he’s tired of elected officials making decisions that the people cannot vote on.

“I think we’ve gotten away from what their job is and I’d like to see them get back to what’s best for us not what’s best for them. Plain and simple,” Ingeman said.

Alana Lenihan, chairwoman of the Democratic Party of Douglas County, said Brown was elected by the majority of Oregonians and Democrats in Douglas County stand by her.

“There’s a lot of misinformation out there about Kate Brown and what people perceive as her ‘agenda,’ and I just ... I feel that people aren’t willing to listen,” Lenihan said.

The Flush Down Kate Brown website cites Oregon’s low high school graduation rates, potential mandatory vaccination policy and “rampant” sexual abuse in the foster care system as additional reasons for launching the petition.

“Governor Brown is negligent to address the homelessness issues, the education issues and the employment issues, which are all tied together. Proper direction and management of our educational system to prevent homelessness, needs to happen!” the website reads.

“People are tired of their voices not being heard. There are a lot of laws that are going into effect or are trying to go into effect that are going to change a lot of lives in Oregon, a lot of businesses, a lot of families,” Carlston said. “She’s taking away the voter’s rights in a lot of areas.”

Bill Lunch, a professor emeritus of political science at Oregon State University, said that gathering the required number of valid signatures is a “tough task.”

“A very high fraction of the signatures that are gathered in the great majority of petition drives turn out to be invalid,” Lunch said. “So, realistically, the sponsors would need to gather not 280,000 signatures, but something more like about 430 to 450,000 — it’s possible to do that of course, but it would take an enormous effort.”


Education
Riddle teachers travel US by train for professional development

MYRTLE CREEK — Riddle science teacher Beverly Scott and Riddle math teacher Deniece Thompson took a month to travel across the United States and parts of Canada, exploring museums and natural landmarks to help incorporate in their teachings back home.

The trip, done mostly by train, was made possible thanks to a Funds for Teachers fellowship through The Ford Family Foundation.

“We both liked the idea of train travel,” Scott said. Thompson said the two had talked about doing a trip two years ago, but they were unable to get dates to work for both of them.

On the Amtrak train to Minnesota, they met a young truck driver, Cory. His truck had earlier struck a moose, and while his truck was undergoing repairs, he took a train home.

Scott and Thompson told Cory about their journey and that they were on their way to the Science Museum in St. Paul, Minnesota, home of a Math Moves exhibit.

Later at the St. Paul museum, they ran into the same truck driver, who they said was having a blast exploring the interactive exhibits.

Cory was just one of the many people the two teachers connected with on the train and told about their journey.

In fact, when they arrived in Chicago they went to a store to create business cards with information about Funds for Teachers, The Ford Family Foundation, their personal blogs and the social media sites they were using to post information about the trip.

“We met a lot of teachers, hopefully, some will apply to do this in the future,” Scott said. “This opportunity would not have been available if not for The Ford Family Foundation. It’s nice they were recognizing the need for teachers to expand their knowledge.”

They visited at least 30 different sites during the trip.

“The fellowship is for enriching the level of knowledge for teachers and this definitely did that,” Scott said. “The experiences, as rushed as they were, provided us with an expanded mindset.”

People along the way were also helpful in explaining more about the area, the food, the history, and anything else Scott and Thompson wanted to know.

“I grew up here and I want to do more in Oregon and encourage kids to get out more,” Thompson said.

Scott said she was going to try to go out at least once a month to explore something in Oregon.

They left Oregon via Portland, where they explored the Shanghai Tunnels, the Chinese Gardens and the Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education. While the teachers agreed that the Shanghai Tunnels were disappointing and the Chinese Gardens were beautiful, it was the Jewish museum that made a lasting impact — because it branched out to equity and acceptance of tribes such as the Cow Creek Tribe and focused specifically on Oregon.

“We left there very touched,” Scott said. It was one of the first unexpected things they experienced during the trip.

An unexpected stop along the way was Campobello Island, a small island in Canada that connects to the mainland of Maine via a bridge. It was a favorite spot for both teachers.

Scott said her main goal was to see the Bay of Fundy, which she has incorporated in many of her lesson plans, but she had no idea how beautiful the island would be.

“I love the wildlife component,” Scott said. “I taught marine biology and I picked up stuff that I could’ve used this year, but for the future will share with other teachers.”

Both said they hope to return and make time for a tea where Eleanor Roosevelt’s historical impact on America and the area would be discussed.

Thompson, who loves lighthouses, was intrigued to find out that despite being on Canadian soil the U.S. Coast Guard takes care of the lighthouses on the island.

“It’s near to see a joint sharing between countries,” Thompson said.

Because of their journey by train, Scott and Thompson had to pack light and were unable to bring back everything. So they were able to bring back a map of the lighthouses, salt they mined in Kansas, sea shells from the Bay of Fundy (both American and Canadian), a yucca plant from New Mexico and a sticker.

“We had to pack real light,” Scott said. “I feel a little guilty because I brought nothing back for my kids.”

To read more about their trip and their experiences, read their blog at www.trekacrosstheus.com.


Local
Outage affects more than 32,000 customers throughout Douglas County

The loss of a main Pacific Power transmission feed is believed to be the cause of a power outage that affected more than 32,000 customers from Dillard to Sutherlin for 40 minutes on Friday afternoon.

The outage, first reported at 1:24 p.m., shut down traffic signals throughout Roseburg, reducing motorists to stop-and-go speed at many intersections. Power was fully restored by 2:02 p.m., according to Tom Gauntt, spokesman for Pacific Power.

At one point, more than 15,000 Pacific Power customers in Roseburg, more than 6,000 in the Winston-Dillard area, and approximately 5,000 customers in the Sutherlin-Oakland area were affected, according to the Pacific Power outage map. More than 1,500 Douglas Electric Cooperative customers were affected by the outage, according to Todd Munsey, spokesman for the company.

Munsey said loss of the Pacific Power transmission line affected Douglas Electric customers in the Umpqua, Melrose, Lookingglass, Tenmile, Camas Valley and other areas.

The company is investigating the cause of the outage, he said.


Crime
Grants Pass man indicted for Douglas County sex crimes

A Josephine County man, already serving a 12 1/2 year prison term for sexually abusing a minor in that county, has been indicted for two dozen sex crimes in Douglas County.

Otis Darrell Huey, 52, of Grants Pass, is accused of 23 counts of first-degree sex abuse and one count of first-degree unlawful sexual penetration in Douglas County. He appeared in a Douglas County Circuit Courtroom on Thursday afternoon to face the charges before Judge Kathleen Johnson.

The grand jury indictment, filed on July 11, accuses Huey of crimes against three females under the age of 14 in Douglas County. In court on Thursday, Huey did not enter a plea.

Huey was charged for crimes that allegedly happened in Douglas County between June 1, 2005, and June 1, 2009.

Judge Johnson set a hearing for 8:30 a.m. Aug. 2 to hear the plea and possibly set a trial date at that time.

Defense attorney Erik Swallow said that Huey will likely enter a not guilty plea at the next hearing and he will begin preparing for trial.

Huey, who was convicted in California 18 years ago for lewd acts upon a child, is serving his sentence for the May 30 conviction in Josephine County in the Oregon State Penitentiary.