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The ConnectOregon V Final Review Committee met on Tuesday in Portland to review the list of qualified applications for the approximate $4 million in remaining ConnectOregon funds. Topping the list is the Port of St. Helens Berth 2, Beaver Dock Reconstruction for $2 million, followed by the City of Eugene Bike Share program for $909,066 and the Teevin Bros. Rail Intermodal Consolidation project in Rainier for $2.3 million.

On January 4, 2015, troopers in Lewis County were called to a two vehicle collision on State Route 12 involving a passenger car and semi-truck. The driver of the passenger car, Mr. Jay Sume of Randle, WA, was fatality injured when the vehicle he was driving crossed the center line, impacting the front of the semi-truck. The cause of the collision is still under investigation.

This fatality collision presented another obstacle for troopers. The wife of Mr. Sume arrived on scene after reading a message of the incident on the social media site FaceBook. Troopers were not prepared to notify Mrs. Sume of the death of her husband, or answer questions on how the death occurred when she arrived on scene. Investigators were still collecting evidence and determing a preliminary cause of the incident. Troopers were extremely concerned the final images Mrs. Sume would remember of her husband would have an emotionally lasting impact. Troopers were faced with the difficult task of telling Mrs. Sume her husband had died while she looked at the wreckage of the scene.

People willing to volunteer time and expertise are very valuable to the operation of the county government and each of the cities in the county.  The process of filling positions usually involves filling out an application and appointments are made as vacancies occur.

Astoria's new Chief of Police was officially sworn in this week by Mayor Arline LaMear. Brad Johnston appeared on Tom Freel's Coastwatch program on KAST along with Emergency Communications Manager Jeff Rusiecki to talk about the department and it's activities over the past year.  In the following portion of that interview Johnston talks about his new job and the added responsibilities of being the assistant City Manager. The conversation also covers the importance of social media and other technology in a modern police department.

Willis Van Dusen wasn't in his usual seat Monday night as the Astoria City Council Meeting was getting underway.  The outgoing Mayor was just returning from a vacation trip and told KAST news "I wouldn't miss this", as he took a seat in the audience and waited for the session to begin. Van Dusen was about to pass the gavel to incoming Mayor Arline LaMear.  Van Dusen was a strong supporter of LaMear's candidacy for the job he held for the past 24 years.

The contractor working for the Oregon Department of Transportation will resume bridge rehabilitation work on the Old Youngs Bay Bridge (U.S. 101 Bus) starting the week of January 12. Most of the work will be done during the daytime with flaggers controlling a single lane of traffic. Only minor delays are expected during construction activities and travelers should drive through the area with caution.

For the second consecutive year, the Clatsop County Budget and Finance Department is the recipient of the Distinguished Budget Presentation Award from the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada.

Woody debris placed in streams has proven to significantly improve salmon habitat by provding shady shelter and encouraging the growth of beneficial algae.  Local Boy Scout Troop 621 is collecting Christmas Trees to place in a local creek to aid salmon. Trees may be dropped off at Astoria High School parking lot and at Putnam Pro-lube in Warrenton on Saturday, January 3 between 10:00am and 2:00pm.  Donations are being accepted with the proceeds going toward helping 12 local scouts attend summer camp.

The trees are going to be placed in a tidal channel of Colewart Creek in the Lewis and Clark National Historical Park during a service project on January 31.

The City of Astoria together with Matt Hastie of Angelo Planning Group will hold a Town Hall meeting to present preliminary strategies for updating the City's Development Code to implement recommendations in the Riverfront Vision Plan for properties in the Bridge Vista Area. The meeting will be held on Tuesday, January 6, 2015 from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Riverview Room #2 of the Holiday Inn Express, 204 W Marine Drive, Astoria.

Marcus Mariota and Oregon turned an avalanche of Florida State mistakes into a mountain of points and the Ducks rolled past the defending national champions 59-20 Thursday to turn the first College Football Playoff semifinal into a Rose Bowl rout.

The Astoria Police Department is proud to announce the promotion of Officer Chris McNeary to Sergeant effective January 1, 2015. Sergeant McNeary has been employed by the Astoria Police Department since 2000. Prior to working for the Astoria Police Department he worked for the Clatsop County Juvenile Department, was a Reserve Police Officer and a US Army Military Police Officer.

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