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Politics & Government
5:44 pm
Mon March 17, 2014

Facing A Hot Wildfire Season, Officials Pitch New Funding Bill

Credit Federal Emergency Management Agency

This summer is shaping up to be a hot season for wildfires, especially on the west coast. Federal officials and lawmakers took the opportunity Monday to urge passage of legislation that would treat big wildfires like other natural disasters. They say this would fix a problem that’s hampered efforts to prevent the fires in the first place.

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Jefferson Exchange | March 17, 2014 | 8:30
10:10 am
Mon March 17, 2014

Keeping Wolves On Track To Recovery

Credit Oregon State University

Rob Klavins of Oregon Wild is upbeat about wolf recovery in Oregon.

Oregon's Fish and Wildlife Commission got a recent report on the success of wolf management in the state.

And the process of wolf recovery appears to be going relatively well, even in the eyes of some environmental groups. 

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History
5:45 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Redding Congregation Recalls "The Wright Time"

Members of the Pilgrim Congregational Church in Redding breaking ground on their Frank Lloyd Wright-designed church in 1960
Shasta Historical Society

Architect Frank Lloyd Wright designed over a thousand buildings during his long career.  Only ten were houses of worship, and one of them was the Pilgrim Congregational Church in Redding. A team of Shasta County historians has produced a film documenting how the church convinced the man who was designing the Guggenheim Museum to take on their commission.

But the  film is less about the famous architect, and more about "the little congregation that could,"which ended up using its own members to build a Frank Lloyd Wright landmark.

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Is Caltrans "out of date"?
4:17 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

NorCal Highway Projects Raise Environmental Concerns

The Smith River, near Crescent City, California
Credit Clinton Steeds via Wikipedia Commons

Recently, an independent review of California’s transportation department Caltrans concluded the agency is stuck in the past. Some activists say several Caltrans projects along the North Coast are examples of the need for reform.

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Jefferson Exchange | March 13, 2014 | 8:30
11:15 am
Wed March 12, 2014

The Case Against A Jackson County GMO Ban

Sugar beets in the field.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

John Watt from Good Neighbor Farmers--opposed to the measure--joins us.

Jackson County is the only county in Oregon to hold its own vote on whether to ban genetically modified (GMO) crops. 

And it will likely be the last, since the Oregon legislature banned further local votes.  But measure 15-119 is an interesting test case. 

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Jefferson Exchange | March 12, 2014 | 8:00
10:10 am
Wed March 12, 2014

Jackson County Prepares To Vote On Libraries

Main library in Medford.
Credit Oregon Historical County Records Guide

Cathy Shaw of Libraries For All Jackson County makes the case in favor of the library district vote in May.

Like so many other things, public libraries have become a political football in recent decades, subject to cutting or closing to balance local budgets. 

Jackson County lived through one round of library shutdowns in 2007, only to see libraries reopen with outsourced management and reduced hours. 

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Jefferson Exchange | March 11, 2014 | 8:00
10:10 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Closing Ranks On Colonoscopies

A colonoscopy in progress.
Credit U.S. Navy/Public Domain

Jason Parks talks about getting the Oregon legislature to pass a law on colonoscopy coverage.

The Oregon Legislature recently took a stand on colonoscopies. 

Not pro or con, mind you--medicine is quite convinced of the value of a picture of the large intestine.  What the legislature did is make sure that insurance companies will cover the cost of removing polyps discovered during the procedure. 

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The Lege Calls It A Session
4:25 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

2014 Legislative Wrap-Up

The rotunda at the Oregon State Capitol in Salem.
Credit M.O. Stevens via Wikipedia Commons

Oregon lawmakers wrapped up the 2014 legislative session. As might be expected, a lot of big ideas were brought forward in January, but by the end of the session relatively few survived. JPR’s Liam Moriarty spoke with Northwest News Network capital correspondent Chris Lehman to get the lowdown on what did – and didn’t – get done.

Jefferson Exchange | March 10, 2014 | 8:00
10:10 am
Mon March 10, 2014

Food Stamp Cuts Past and Future

Oregon's version of SNAP: the Oregon Trail Card.

Robyn Johnson talks about the effects of Oregon Trail ("food stamp") use in the state.

The latest federal figures show more than 47 million Americans receiving "food stamps," the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). 

But that number is already smaller than a year earlier. 

Few people celebrate the reduction, because it has less to do with life circumstances improving than with Congress simply voting to cut the program. 

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Jefferson Exchange | March 10, 2014 | 8:30
10:10 am
Mon March 10, 2014

Eugene Takes Action On Pesticides

Credit pdphoto.org

George Brown and Lisa Arkin talk about the Eugene City Council passing restrictions on neo-nicotinoid pesticides.

It's not easy to say "neonicotinoid pesticide," perhaps harder still to pass legislation regulating it. 

The Oregon Legislature backed off new regulations on the pesticides, opting instead for further study and a task force. 

This is the class of pesticides blamed for a major bee kill near Portland in Summer 2013. 

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