The Jefferson Exchange

News & Info: Mon-Fri • 8am-10am | 8pm-10pm

JPR's live call-in program devoted to current events and news makers from around the region and beyond. Participate at:  800-838-3760.  Email: JX@jeffnet.org.   Check us out on Facebook.

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Oregon State Police

Reporters scattered across the Northwest for the series of reports called "Wildlife Detectives."

The radio reports are right here (scroll down), but there's a television component as well. 

And let's face it, beetles consuming flesh off the bone is a very visual thing (that happens at the forensics lab in Ashland). 

Wikimedia/JPR titling

The countdown is on to legal marijuana in Oregon.  Legal pot for PERSONAL use, that is. 

It becomes legal on July 1st, thanks to voter passage of Measure 91 last November. 

Somebody's got to craft rules under the law, and that is the domain of the OLCC, Oregon Liquor Control Commission. 

Brent Kenyon of Southern Oregon Alternative Medicine in Ashland is a member of a committee advising OLCC.  He joins us with word of his views and the advising process. 

Wikimedia

Fish and Wildlife Departments in our states need money to continue doing their job, and the answer may be a hike in fees for hunting and fishing licenses. 

As it is, agents are having trouble keeping up with poachers, and are seeing declines in some wildlife species as a result. 

Our EarthFix unit is tracking this and other angles in a series of stories called "Wildlife Detectives." 

Geoffrey Riley/JPR

Opponents of liquified natural gas plants (and pipelines) took to the Oregon State Capitol this week to vent their displeasure.  Now it's your turn--pleasure or dis.  

Or give a call/email about local police departments using military gear.

Our weekly VENTSday segment puts the listeners front and center.   We throw a pair of topics on the table, and let callers and emailers vent--politely--on those topics.

Topics range from the global to the hyper-local, and all responsible opinions are welcome.

Wikimedia

The University of Oregon Environmental Studies Program put a new class on its schedule in the academic year now ending... a class combining environmental justice and the media. 

So students learned about making documentaries on environmental issues. 

The first one finished is called "Drift", about aerial herbicide spraying that landed on people in the Gold Beach area in October 2013. 

Penguin Books

NPR's Steve Inskeep is a familiar voice to millions of Americans, from his work on "Morning Edition," heard on the music services of JPR. 

But even public radio has its limits when it comes to in-depth reporting. 

So Inskeep is the author of a fresh book on President Andrew Jackson and his efforts to remove Native Americans from the South. 

Wikimedia

We get the image of the American farmer locked in our heads, and it's usually a guy in overalls.

But the truth is a bit more diverse.

And the Southern Oregon Historical Society explores that truth in its current display, "Women of the Land: Southern Oregon Women in Agriculture."

Wikimedia

Raw milk is either sought-after or reviled; there appears to be little middle ground. 

But the landscape is changing just a bit... Oregon authorities just loosened regulations on the advertising of raw milk. 

The topic is one well-known to David Gumpert, who writes of food and small business. 

  It is not considered a compliment to be called a pig in our world.  And there are several cultures that frown on eating the flesh of the animal. 

But we still keep pigs around, alternately recoiling from their antics and finding them completely delicious. 

Mark Essig explores our complicated relationship with pigs and pork in Lesser Beasts: A Snout-to-Tail History of the Humble Pig

Memorial Day weekend sends the Exchange crew off in search of summertime-type pursuits, just like you.  We fill Monday's Exchange with some key interviews from past programs.  

At 8: Rob Dietz and Dan O'Neill resist the notion that constant growth in the economy is good for people or the planet.  And they resist for quite a few pages in their book Enough is Enough

U.S. Fish and Wildlife

Side-by-side comparisons show Oregon's pesticide rules on forestry spraying are weaker than in other states. 

Those rules played a part in the spraying of dozens of homes and people and animals by a helicopter near Gold Beach two years ago. 

The incident led to fines and a suspension, but no change in rules.  Oregon house member Ann Lininger wants to see the rules change, and she's made several efforts to change them through the legislature. 

U.S. Fish and Wildlife

Just about every criminal case involves physical evidence, and that physical evidence is often processed by a crime lab. 

There are more than 400 crime labs across the United States for researching crimes against people and property. 

And there is exactly ONE in the world for investigating crimes against wildlife. 

That is the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service's Forensics Lab in Ashland. 

Women in agriculture and raw milk get a day together.

We learn about the difficulties of chasing poachers--successfully--in a big state like Oregon.

And even Steve Inskeep of NPR's Morning Edition gives us ten minutes (yes, REALLY).

Another big week is shaping up May 25-29 on the Exchange... take a look at the still-forming lineup:

Wikimedia

Jackson County's ban on GMO crops is set to take effect on June 6th, unless the federal judge hearing a suit against it blocks it.

Another vote on a GMO ban, in Benton County (Corvallis), failed this week, by a wide margin.  Benton County is home to Oregon State University, which performs research on GMO crops.

And OSU's agriculture dean, Dr. Dan Arp, sat on a task force reporting on GMO agriculture just last year.

mtashland.com

The only ski area in Southwestern Oregon could have more weddings than ski days this year. 

Mount Ashland Ski Area only opened for 38 skiing days last winter... which is still 38 more than the winter before. 

Weddings and other warm-season events could become a more important part of the area's income down the road, if details can be worked out with the landlord, the U.S. Forest Service. 

Public comments are now being taken on summer recreation activities (see below). 

Basic Books

Do you stop to think about the importance of seeds in your life? 

Your morning cup of coffee starts with them, and much of what you eat, wear, and use comes from seeds. 

Conservation biologist Thor Hanson wants us to think about seeds and what they give us. 

And he gives us plenty to work with in his book The Triumph of Seeds.

votesmart.org

 

The potential impact of the Oregon Supreme Court's decision to stop the state from reforming the PERS (Public Employee Retirement System) benefits paid to retirees runs into the hundreds of millions of dollars. 

Oregon State Representative Peter Buckley (D-Ashland) will play a significant role in addressing this issue moving ahead. 

Buckley is the House Co-Chair for the Joint Ways and Means Committee, which helps shape state budgets.

Even Congress is fighting over the National Security Agency's bulk collection of phone call "metadata."  On our VENTSday segment, tell us what you think.

While you're at it, give the world a piece of your mind on Oregon's tax "kicker" law, that'll give money to taxpayers next year.

Our weekly VENTSday segment puts the listeners front and center.   We throw a pair of topics on the table, and let callers and emailers vent--politely--on those topics.

Topics range from the global to the hyper-local, and all responsible opinions are welcome.

Charlotte Duren/JPR News

Genetically modified crops--universally called GMO--are not going away, and neither is the controversy over them. 

Industry and many regulatory bodies insist they are safe, but many consumers and activists want them tightly controlled, if used at all. 

Jackson County passed a ban on growing GMO crops in May of 2014, the only binding local measure in Oregon.  That measure is set to take effect on June 6th, but first it has to clear a court challenge. 

Our Family Farms Coalition pushed for the measure. 

Wikimedia

Oregon and California are both brimming with natural wonders.  And kids do learn about the many natural features in school, but often in classrooms. 

Outdoor School For All wants to fling open the classroom doors in Oregon, so students get education ABOUT the outdoors IN the outdoors. 

The movement got bills introduced in both houses of the Oregon legislature to provide a week of outdoor education or its equivalent for all fifth and sixth graders. 

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