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During the month of September, local agencies and businesses throughout Clatsop County are partnering to launch the OK/HELP sign program.  The OK/HELP signs are being offered to local citizens to use following a large disruptive event in the county that requires widespread welfare checks. By putting the sign in a front window to indicate their status, citizens can help save time for those tasked with checking on residents door-to-door.  A sign that says “OK” allows workers to move efficiently through neighborhoods using precious time to tend to those bearing a “HELP” placard.

Mortgage lending companies use federal flood maps in determining whether to require property owners to buy expensive flood insurance. That system is intended to provide accurate data on the possibility of high water events that could devastate homes and businesses. But what happens when the data is wrong?

Authorities say a man was rescued after his kayak capsized near Warrenton.

Coast Guard officials said in a news release a call came in Tuesday afternoon from a man saying his elderly brother was on a kayak that had overturned and that he was unable to get to shore.

A boat crew found the man, who was wearing a life jacket and clinging to nearby pilings south of Hammond Marina.

The crew pulled the man aboard and transported him to waiting emergency personnel. Officials say he denied medical assistance.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Portland Field Office Director Michael Hickman will administer the Oath of Allegiance to 11 of America’s newest citizens during a special naturalization ceremony at Knappton Cove Heritage Center on September 16. Between 1899 and 1938, this site served as a quarantine center for new immigrants.

For three days this week, some Warrenton high school students and teachers are joining other students and scientists at Oregon State University aboard the research vessel Oceanus to gain at-sea research experience off the Oregon coast as part of a project to enhance their STEM, or science, technology, engineering and math skills.

The Astoria Downtown Merchants group would take over parking enforcement duties from the city police department under an agreement approved by the Astoria council. The terms of the agreement call for the Astoria Downtown Historic District Association to provide a person to act as a parking enforcement officer and to provide tourist information in the downtown core. The association takes over liability and must carry insurance. The association must report activities and financial information to the city.

The loss by fire of the Pacific Seafoods processing plant in 2013 was a major blow to Warrenton. The loss of jobs impacted the citizens. The loss of a big water customer impacted the city, and loss of a major local processor caused headaches for the fishing fleet. Now the first big step to bring that plant back on line is being undertaken by the city this week.

(U.S. Coast Guard photo by Lee Lafollette)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      

Due to three narrowly missed incidents involving large deep-draft motor vessels and recreational fishermen last weekend, the Coast Guard and local law enforcement agencies will be reminding recreational boaters about the navigational rules of the road and actively enforcing boating safety laws as part of Operation Make Way on the Columbia and Willamette Rivers this weekend.

The Coast Guard suspended its search at 10:45 a.m., Thursday, for a woman that was reportedly swept away while swimming in the vicinity of Sid Snyder Beach in Long Beach, Wednesday night.  Coast Guard crews aboard an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter, from Sector Columbia River, in Warrenton, Oregon, and a 47-foot Motor Lifeboat, from Station Cape Disappointment, conducted four searches covering 625 trackline miles within 48 square miles, and responders from the Washington State Police conducted a beach search.

In a letter to Legislators Thursday, Secretary of State Jeanne  Atkins shared the findings and recommendations from an independent investigation of the Business Energy Tax Credit (BETC) program, which was sunset by the Legislature in 2014 following concerns about huge cost overruns and possible criminal activity.

County Manager Cameron Moore has announced that Michael McNickle has been hired as the director of the county’s Public Health Department.  McNickle, who currently serves as Environmental Health Supervisor, replaces Brian Mahoney, who retired last month. He will officially assume the job Sept. 12.

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