303 NW Canyon Drive now “Historic Landmark” in Redmond

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Aug 242016
 

By a unanimous vote of the Redmond City Council, the town has added yet another historically significant property to the rolls of Redmond Historic Landmarks. It’s the 1940 creation of Jack Elliot who built the one-story ranch style home at 303 Northwest Canyon Drive. It has been home to many-a-prominent Redmond family over the years and has long been admired as having made an architectural as well as a cultural design statement in the Redmond area.

Jack Elliot House 303 NW Canyon Drive Becomes a city historic landmark.

Jack Elliot House
303 NW Canyon Drive
Becomes a city historic landmark.


Mr. Elliot built the home to show-case the many kinds of building materials his at-the-time employer, Ponderosa Mouldings, offered on the market. Although turning out to be a home well sprinkled with upgrades like high quality wood siding, floorings, roof trusses, board and batten, log cabin, chevron, faux log and lap siding, Mr. Elliot made it work, evoking a design symmetry that still pleases and impresses the discerning eye – even today.

An eclectic orchestration of siding, window adornments and clean modern lines distinguished the look and feel of the home.

An eclectic orchestration of siding, window adornments and clean modern lines distinguished the look and feel of the home.

Current owners James and Suzanne Moody love the home so much that they want it preserved for future generations to learn about and admire the way it helped to define mid-20th Century home function and architecture on the high desert of Central Oregon. The historic designation also helps to preserve and enhance property values in the immediate surrounding neighborhood.

The Jack Elliot Home sits perched above the Dry Canyon at 303 NW Canyon Drive

The Jack Elliot Home sits perched above the Dry Canyon at 303 NW Canyon Drive

By virtue of Tuesday night’s city council action, The Jack Elliott House, now under the tender care of James and Suzanne Moody, will join nearly thirty other significant historical properties that have also been designated historical landmarks within the city limits of Redmond.

Redmond City Hall is doing a good job – but citizens still want improvements among city services

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Aug 242016
 
Redmond city staff and city council received a big pile of citizen opinions on how city hall is performing at making Redmond even better.

Redmond city staff and city council received a big pile of citizen opinions on how city hall is performing at making Redmond an even better place to live.

The Redmond Community Survey on how well city hall is doing its job was recently sent out in water bills, hard copies via city newsletters as well as emailed to private citizens and businesses. Residences were also advised they could respond to the survey on line on the city’s website. Nearly 1,500 surveys were completed from May 20th of this year through June 21st. As a headline, responders think the city’s doing a good job but they want improvements too.

Nearly two-thirds of survey responders felt positive about the city’s overall job of delivering city services. Only 5% gave the city an F. Nearly a quarter were fairly neutral.

As for Redmond Police, respondents gave them an overall “B-” but also an “incomplete” in the category of controlling speeders. But overall, Redmond residents like their police department – a lot. And that’s saying a lot when compared to what’s been showing up on the evening news lately.

The survey showed that citizens feel grade “A” safe in their neighborhoods, grade “B” safe in city parks, and grade “A-” in downtown Redmond. Respondents said they generally feel safe at night in their neighborhoods as well as in Redmond downtown. But not so safe in city parks at night.

But speaking of parks, during the day people say they have a B+ time when they’re recreating at city parks. Most people spend most of their “in the park” time at parks very near their homes. Less than a quarter of the survey responders said they use school playgrounds and green space.
They give city parks a solid “B” rating compared to a middle “C” grade to school playgrounds.

Only 20% of respondents said they use Juniper Golf Course for recreation. Of those who use Juniper Golf Course about three-quarters say they have a positive view of it. The jury’s still out on the recent improvements to the course’s restaurant.

Survey opinions on city streets, lighting, sewer and water services ranged from a low “C” to a low “B.” There was significant dissatisfaction with city street lighting. Water services were higher rated. Sewer about the same. Street maintenance was in the same ballpark as were storm drains. The way Redmond’s municipal water tastes seem to put some respondents off, but that might be because some people’s home plumbing may not be in good shape – that opinion offered by city workers who say Redmond’s water has had a long reputation for being extremely high quality due to near pristine sources for city water.

Redmond streets got high marks – a solid “B” grade – affirmed by many as being ‘smooth.’ Respondents said bicycling and walking are pleasurable around town. However, as mentioned above, vehicle speeding is still a major concern. Nearly 40% of respondents to the survey complained that speeding is a major problem in Redmond. Police Chief Dave Tarbet said he’s reviewed those opinions and says his department will focus more enforcement on the issue.

When it comes to housing in Redmond, many responded that they love or like their homes very much, plus the fact they’re all pretty close to city parks and good places to shop. But a good thirty percent complained that housing is too expensive for those of modest income. But overall, three quarter of respondents said Redmond is a very good place to live.

As for getting around town, respondents said traffic is largely not a problem. Most commute alone. Bus travel is borderline non-existent due to a lack of viable service.

Use of the Redmond Airport is spotty. Those who did use the airport, most said service levels were good including car rentals, restaurants and taxis. No big negative scores in this category.

When it comes to downtown Redmond, survey responders said the downtown is a great place for dining, family friendly recreation and shopping. But some would like the shopping experience more diversified and upgraded.

When it comes to keeping up on how Redmond is growing, many drew a big blank. They don’t keep track of what’s being built or where. They have little to no interaction with the city’s community development department. A long-arm’s length relationship also typified survey respondents with Redmond City Hall. The overwhelming response was that they had no idea what was going on at city hall and nearly none had served on city advisory boards or commissions. City staff points out that about 100 citizens volunteer to serve on those boards and commissions.

The survey also showed that the vast majority of citizens are not involved in the public arena although a small minority did say that getting involved with the city is a good thing and helps the community get its point across to city leaders.

As for the make-up of Redmond’s citizenry filling out the survey it was decidedly older. Seventy percent were 45 and older. Two-thirds were female. Nearly half lived in the southwest area of town, 41% in the northwest, 10% in the northeast and 2% in the southeast area of town.

City officials say they’ll use the survey results to better fine tune the quality and the effectiveness of how the city delivers it’s municipal services to the people of Redmond. Then, they’ll re-survey Redmond residents to see if citizen satisfaction is trending upward.

Kids playing with fire almost burned down some homes in Crook County

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Aug 232016
 

Juveniles lighting toilet paper caused an explosive grass and tree fire that quickly spread toward nearby homes. CCFD photos

Juveniles lighting toilet paper on NW Panorana caused an explosive grass and tree fire that quickly spread toward nearby homes. CCFD photos


Quick action by firefighters got a line around the blaze, thereby saving nearby homes just in the nick of time...

Quick action by firefighters got a line around the blaze, thereby saving nearby homes just in the nick of time…


Just before 5pm Tuesday, firefighters were dispatched to the report of a brush fire on NW Panorama View. Original reports were that about 20 trees were fully engulfed and the fire was spreading quickly toward some homes.

When units arrived on scene, firefighters discovered that the fire had spread rapidly and threatened several residences. The evacuation level was immediately set to level III and people were asked to leave their homes. In slightly less than an hour firefighters contained the blaze enabling law enforcement to allow residents to return to their homes. Meanwhile fire crews are working through the night to douse the fire and to make sure it’s dead out.

As a result of the investigation, it was determined that the fire started by two juveniles playing with a lighter and lit toilet paper near some dry grass. The ensuing blaze burned about 13 acres. No homes were lost or damaged. But they were direly threatened early on.

This case is being sent to the Crook County District Attorney’s Office for review and for possible filing of charges.

Bend comptroller bilks company out of a million dollars over past four years…says DA

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Aug 232016
 

Sherrie Burge Theft from employer of about a million dollars. DCJ photo

Sherrie Burge
Theft from employer of about a million dollars.
DCJ photo


ARREST OF BOOKKEEPER IN $1 MILLION EMBEZZLEMENT CASE
From office of John Hummel, Deschutes Co. District Attorney

Sherrie Lynn Burge was arrested yesterday on a felony warrant, after being indicted last Friday by a grand jury on 32 felony counts of Money Laundering, Aggravated Theft in the First Degree, Aggravated Identity Theft, Forgery, and Fraudulent Use of Credit Cards.

Ms. Burge was employed by DENT Instruments as a comptroller and office bookkeeper since 2012. DENT Instruments has been a developer and manufacturer of power and energy instruments for over 25 years in Bend, Oregon. The total loss the company suffered from Ms. Burge’s ongoing embezzlement was nearly $1 million dollars, over the course of four years.

Citizens panel endorses corporate tax hike – business groups oppose it

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Aug 232016
 

Science class The Oregonian photo

Science class
The Oregonian photo

A citizens group charged with reviewing the pluses and minuses of a higher tax on a small group of corporations have endorsed Measure 97 on the November ballot – a tax on corporate profits on sales over $25 million in Oregon. The citizens group noted that Oregon has the lowest corporate tax rates among all 50 states while its schools and other vital public services struggle.

Meanwhile, opponents of the higher tax, mainly business groups, contend the citizens group is all wrong and misled on the facts. Both arguments will appear in the state voters pamphlet that will be mailed by the Secretary of State’s Office this fall.

Here’s more on the story in The Oregonian. Click here.

Update on this morning’s fatal crash south of Bend

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Aug 222016
 

osp patch
Monday morning at about 8:15AM, OSP Troopers and emergency personnel responded to the report of a head-on collision on Highway 97 near milepost 14 (south of Bend).

Preliminary investigation revealed a 2008 Chevrolet Malibu was traveling northbound on Highway 97 (in the fast lane) when it rear-ended a 2016 Ford F350, also traveling northbound. After this impact, the Chevrolet slid out of control, crossing the center yellow line and was struck on the passenger side by a southbound 2009 Honda Accord.

The driver of the Chevrolet, Joshua S MATTHES, age 25, of La Pine, was pronounced deceased on scene by emergency personnel. The driver of the Honda, Ashley S OBRIEN, age 24, of Oak Park, California, was seriously injured and taken to Saint Charles in Bend for medical treatment. The driver of the Ford, John NORRIS, age 59, of Bend was not injured.

Highway 97 was closed for one hour for the investigation to be conducted. OSP was assisted on scene by the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office, Sunriver Fire, Bend Fire and the Oregon Department of Transportation.

Good Samaritans save a life on Highway 370 west of Prineville

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Aug 222016
 

Highway 370 Six miles west of Prineville

Highway 370
Six miles west of Prineville

Passing motorists jumped  down and kept teen female's head above water while they cut her out of her seat belt.

Passing motorists jumped down and kept teen female’s head above water while they cut her out of her seat belt.


Just before 8am this morning OSP Troopers and emergency personnel responded to the report of a car that had slid off the the road into an irrigation canal on Highway 370 near milepost 10, (six miles west of Prineville).

Preliminary investigation revealed a 2003 Ford Taurus was traveling eastbound on Highway 370 (O’Neil Highway) when the vehicle drifted off the roadway and onto the shoulder. The driver attempted to bring the vehicle onto the highway but lost control, crossing both lanes of travel. The car rolled over after it left the north side of the highway, upside down into an irrigation canal. The vehicle was submerged in the canal which had approximately 18″ of water in it.

Two other motorists stopped and quickly began efforts to free the driver from the vehicle. The witnesses had to recline the driver’s seat and use a knife to cut the driver from her seat belt. The driver, a sixteen year old female from Redmond was taken by private vehicle to an area hospital for minor injuries.

According to the driver’s father, Denis FAST, he credits the quick measures the motorists who stopped at the crash scene by saving his daughter from drowning.

Hwy 97 now open south of Bend – But with flaggers

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Aug 222016
 

osp patchOne lane of US 97 is now open near MP 145 (5 miles south of Bend) with traffic being controlled by flaggers. Expect delays, crews and equipment in roadway. The route was closed earlier this morning due to a fatal crash.

Head-on Traffic Crash on Hwy 97, south of Bend – Fatality

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Aug 222016
 

osp patch
8:10am – Report of a three vehicle traffic crash on Nouthbound Highway 97 at milepost 145, a mile and a half south of Baker Road. Head-on. One fatality. One serious injury. Air ambulance on standby.

8:20am – Injured driver trapped in the wreck.

8:24am – Air Ambulance cancelled.

8:32am – One lane to be opened within thirty minutes.

Driver saved from drowning by Good Samaritans

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Aug 222016
 

7:50am – Good Samaritans who stopped at a roll-over accident on O’Neil Highway likely saved the life of the driver whose car wound upside down in an irrigation ditch. Citizen rescuers kept the driver’s head above water while another called 9-1-1.

Emergency responders are enroute to the scene at milepost 10, 7 miles west of Prineville. Citizens have pulled the driver out of the vehicle. He’s safe.