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Jefferson Exchange | October 18, 2013
10:29 am
Fri October 18, 2013

Solar Water Heat For Low-Income Californians

Credit Pink Sherbet Photography

When you're struggling to make your monthly rent payment, you're generally not thinking about things like solar water heating. 

But the California Department of Community Services and Development (CSD) is thinking along those lines. 

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Task Force Forms
6:28 am
Fri October 18, 2013

California May Legalize Marijuana

Credit Jorge Barrios/Wikimedia

California Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom says it's time for the state to get serious about legalizing marijuana. He says he is willing to put his political reputation on the line to make it happen.

Newson and the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California announced Thursday that he is leading a blue-ribbon panel of medical, legal, and law enforcement experts who plan to spend the next 18-24 months studying how California can tax and regulate legal marijuana in an effective way.

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Rep. Goes Against House Leadership
6:18 am
Fri October 18, 2013

Walden Votes Against Ending Shutdown

U.S. Rep. Greg Walden (R) Oregon 2nd District
Credit Official Congressional Portrait

Republican Greg Walden of Oregon voted against the bill to end the partial government shutdown.

He broke with Speaker John Boehner but aligned himself with most of the GOP caucus.

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Court Allows Immediate Restart
5:54 am
Fri October 18, 2013

Loggers Can Go Back To Work

Credit Bureau of Labor Statistics

Loggers may go back to work on national forests without waiting for federal agencies to lift logging bans prompted by the government shutdown.

Following a hearing in Medford yesterday, U.S. District Judge Owen Panner signed a temporary restraining order lifting the logging ban immediately.

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Jefferson Exchange | October 17, 2013
11:01 am
Thu October 17, 2013

Getting Land Use Ordinances Ready for Pot Dispensaries

Credit Jorge Barrios/Wikimedia

Medical marijuana dispensaries will begin showing up in Oregon in the near future, thanks to a law passed by the state legislature this year. 

The Medford City Council recently voted to ban dispensaries, but the state law may trump that.

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Jefferson Exchange | October 17, 2013
10:58 am
Thu October 17, 2013

Learning Oregon's New School Rating System

Credit Wootan01/Flickr

You can be forgiven if you have trouble keeping up with all of the changes taking place in public schools. 

Methods for testing students, teachers and entire schools continue to evolve. 

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Heard For The First Time
11:48 am
Wed October 16, 2013

California's Poet Laureate Debuts A Poem On The Jefferson Exchange

Dawn sky in the Rogue Valley, October 16, 2013.
Credit Geoffrey Riley/JPR

California Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera joined us on the Jefferson Exchange on Wednesday morning, October 16 (full audio here).

And when we asked him to share some of his work, he delivered a new poem, just written this morning on hotel stationery in Ashland.

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Jefferson Exchange | October 16, 2013
10:46 am
Wed October 16, 2013

I Heard It Through The (Jefferson) Grapevine: Mentoring Entrepreneurs

Credit Lucas/Wikimedia

Quick, what's the first thing any business needs to get started?

Money is bound to be the number one answer, but supporters and mentors would not be far behind. 

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Jefferson Exchange | October 16, 2013
10:37 am
Wed October 16, 2013

Meet Juan Felipe Herrera, California's Poet Laureate

Credit Chautauqua Poets and Writers

Both of our states can boast of official Poet Laureates, and today we meet with California's. 

Juan Felipe Herrera is a prolific poet, a professor at the University of California-Riverside, and the winner of several awards for his work. 

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Marijuana Dispensaries May Open In Medford
7:29 am
Wed October 16, 2013

State Marijuana Laws Trump Local Ordinances

Oregon law trumps local laws that try to ban medical marijuana dispensaries.  Ashland Representative Peter Buckley who sponsored the measure passed by the Oregon legislature legalizing the dispensaries, says the state Legislative Counsel made that ruling yesterday.
 The law takes effect in March 2014.
The City of Medford has voted to prohibit any dispensaries in the city. The vote last month, and revealed this week, bans any business licenses if they violate local, state, or federal law.

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Jefferson Exchange | October 15, 2013
11:11 am
Tue October 15, 2013

Suing The Feds Over Wood Smoke Regulation

Credit Katie Campbell/EarthFix

Too much wood smoke is bad for you. 

That's well established by research, and so the federal Environmental Protection Agency regulates the particulate matter that makes up wood smoke. 

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Jefferson Exchange | October 15, 2013
10:39 am
Tue October 15, 2013

When Letting The Forest Burn Is The Best Option

Credit PNW #2 IMTeam

Fire helped create the forests of our region, but we've spent more than a century working very hard to stop fires from either starting or spreading. 

That has changed in recent years, but it's not an overnight process. 

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State May Have To Release Inmates
7:31 am
Tue October 15, 2013

California Loses Supreme Court Prison Ruling

The Supreme Court has rejected California's appeal of a lower-court order that could force the state to release thousands of California prison inmates before they complete their sentences.

The justices did not comment on their order yesterday, which leaves in place the earlier ruling by a panel of three federal judges requiring California to reduce its prison population by an additional 9,600 inmates to improve conditions.

California Governor Jerry Brown has argued that the state cannot meet that goal without releasing dangerous felons and jeopardizing public safety.

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Police Chief Says No
7:11 am
Tue October 15, 2013

Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Will Be Banned In Medford

Absolutely no medical marijuana dispensaries will be allowed in Medford, Oregon despite a state law that makes them legal next year, according to city officials.

Medford police chief Tim George says dispensing medical marijuana violates federal law and currently violates state law.

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Officials Knew System Was Vulnerable
6:52 am
Tue October 15, 2013

California Unemployment Computer Problems Known

California officials knew a computer upgrade for the state's unemployment insurance program was vulnerable to problems before it was installed.

The Sacramento Bee reports that officials underestimated how many unemployment claims would be affected by a glitch in the $188 million system upgrade.

The data-conversion problem eventually delayed jobless benefits for nearly $150,000 Californians.

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Voters May Reject Levy
7:35 am
Mon October 14, 2013

Federal Subsidies May Help And Hurt

A surprise extension of a federal subsidy to Oregon timber counties will prevent jail shutdowns and keep deputies on the road for now, but local officials say the money is only a fraction of what they need. In one cash-strapped county the infusion has started discussion that it could do more harm in the long run, than good.

The federal payout will bring about $100 million to Oregon. Some of the funds are earmarked for schools and roads. In parts of Western Oregon some is available for law enforcement.

Conversion Kits Banned
4:06 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

California Governor Signs Gun Control Laws

Credit Megathon Charlie/Flickr

California Governor Jerry Brown acted on a range of gun bills today (Friday).

He signed a bill to ban high capacity magazine conversion kits and vetoed another which would have given Oakland the right to enact gun regulations stricter than the state’s.

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Jefferson Exchange | October 11, 2013
10:22 am
Fri October 11, 2013

Who Will Pay More To Heat Their Homes This Winter

Credit Marina Burity/Wikimedia

Short answer: Most of us.  Gas and electricity both cost more this year, and winter could be colder.

The real arrival of winter is weeks away, but most of us have already entered the heating season. 

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Jefferson Exchange | October 11, 2013
10:21 am
Fri October 11, 2013

Keeping The Heat In The Kitchen Where It Belongs

Credit NativeForeigner/Wikimedia

When outdoor cooking season arrives, we get the standard warnings about barbecue safety.

Now that the weather has most of us cooking indoors again, we'll hear about the things to keep in mind as we heat food under the roof. 

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BPA Discriminated In Hiring
6:56 am
Fri October 11, 2013

Bonneville Power Administration Told To Fix Hiring

Oregon Senator Ron Wyden says problems with hiring practices that discriminated against veterans and other applicants at the Bonneville Power Administration must be fixed as soon as possible.

Wyden, who chairs the Senate Energy Committee, says he met with the head of the Department of Energy to discuss how to get the BPA back on track.

A report from the U. S. Department of Energy's inspector general was released earlier this week. It blasted the BPA for consistently manipulating the rating process for applicants and subjecting whistleblowers to retaliation.

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