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The community-led effort to renovate the only existing playground in Gearhart took a big step forward with the announcement of Lum's Auto Center, awarding a donation of $10,000 toward the Gearhart Playground Project. The state of the art, eco-friendly structure is designed to provide a safe and controlled space where children can receive numerous health benefits while simply playing and having fun.

 Life Flight Network (LFN), the largest not-for-profit air medical transport service in the United States, announced it will be opening a base in Astoria. The base will begin 24/7 operations May 15, 2015. The LFN base in Astoria will significantly improve access to air medical resources along the Oregon and Washington Coast.

 Tuesday evening at 11:12 PM, a 19 year old Astoria female reported to Astoria Police that she was the victim of an assault. The victim reported that she had been walking on the Astoria Riverwalk near the foot of 31st when she was grabbed from the rear.

The Chinese American Citizen's Alliance of Portland's mission is to develop leadership, service needs in their community and promote for civil rights for all. Chinese ancestry is not required for participation. The Alliance offers local and national scholarships.

Razor clam diggers can count on an eight-day opener beginning Feb. 15 and start planning trips to Washington's beaches in March, state shellfish managers said today.

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) approved the upcoming dig, which runs Feb. 15-22, after marine toxin tests showed the clams are safe to eat.

Dan Ayres, WDFW coastal shellfish manager, said the best digging typically occurs one to two hours before low tide. No digging is allowed at any beach before noon.

A lawsuit that accuses the federal Environmental Protection Agency from failing to protect Washington and Oregon oysters from ocean acidification is scheduled for a hearing Thursday in Seattle.

The agency is being sued by the Center for Biological Diversity, a nonprofit organization that works to protect endangered species and habitat.

The center is challenging an EPA decision three years ago that said Washington and Oregon sea water meets water-quality standards meant to protect marine life.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers today released the final Environmental Impact Statement to reduce predation on juvenile salmon and steelhead listed under the Endangered Species Act by a large population of double-crested cormorants in the Columbia River estuary.

A Coast Guard helicopter crew medevaced three mariners, reportedly suffering from burns and a leg injury, from a cargo ship 52 miles west of the Columbia River Bar, Thursday.  A Coast Guard Air Station Astoria MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew hoisted the three men from the 623-foot Cyprus-flagged motor vessel and transferred them to awaiting emergency medical service personnel at the air station.

A Coast Guard spokesman says a derelict 69-foot fishing vessel has sunk at the Port of Astoria.

Petty Officer 3rd Class Jonathan Klingenberg said the Cap'n Oscar was submerged up to the pilothouse by Thursday evening. It has an unknown amount of fuel aboard.  An agency team is working with Port of Astoria personnel to minimize any pollution.

"Thanks to the crew at the Port of Astoria and the quick response from the Coast Guard incident management department we were able to quickly address the pollution threat," said Chief Warrant Officer Amber Winkowski, the command duty officer at Sector Columbia River. "The Coast Guard will continue to monitor the case until the vessel is removed from the water and the pollution is mitigated."

Personnel from the Port of Astoria, working with Coast Guard responders, plan to attempt dewatering at low tide followed by a full removal of the vessel the Friday morning .

Custom Excavating, contractor for the City of Astoria, will be cutting trees on Irving Avenue between 21st and 29th Streets on February 9th thru February 11th. Pacific Power will be dropping the power lines to help facilitate the project's safety; the power is projected to be down for a few hours on Monday, February 9th.

If you have any questions you can call Astoria Engineering Division at 503-338-5173.

The public is invited to learn more about a proposed enterprise zone designed to boost economic development in Clatsop County at a meeting Tuesday, Feb. 24 at 6 p.m. at the Judge Guy Boyington Building, 857 Commercial St., Astoria.

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