News

Tonasket council holds last meeting

TONASKET – The final city council meeting of 2007 ended with a sendoff for Councilman Patrick Plumb and a celebration of Tonasket’s official incorporation into Okanogan County in December 1927.

Harry Hayter, a member of the Coulee Corridor council and publisher of the Coulee Corridor Publication, addressed the Council.

At their last meeting, the council decided to pull the $500 they gave to the publication.

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Solberg will lead Oroville Chamber of Commerce in ’08

OROVILLE – The Oroville Chamber of Commerce elected a full slate of officers for the upcoming year at their Thursday, Dec. 13 meeting and chose Rich Solberg to head the business organization in 2008.

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The Tonasket Community Cultural Center’s front, as seen from Western Avenue. The center recently received a Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation grant.

Community Cultural Center receives Gates Foundation grant

The building on Western Avenue in Tonasket has been many things since the 1930s.

It was once a mechanic shop. Then a Studebaker dealership. A temporary music and band room for Tonasket High School. It was the Valley Tire Store in the 1980s.

But soon, the building on Western will be renovated to suit exactly what it’s been since 1992: The Community Cultural Center.

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Architect Dave Frunkland, from Yakima, talked about the proposed North Valley Hospital renovations at length with a packed crowd Nov. 27. Most of the council meeting was spent on the proposed plans, addressing a sometimes-hostile crowd - Photo by Amy Vene

Council meeting draws big crowd

A standing-room-only crowd greeted Nov. 27′s city council meeting, eager to voice their opinions, whether supportive or objective, to the North Valley Hospital’s proposed expansion plans.

Though the hospital asked for a delay in the decision to vacate 2nd Street, the council still allowed public comment. The new meeting was scheduled for Jan. 22, 2008.

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Oroville’s city hall is slated for expansion in 2008 if the city can find the additional funding it needs to finance the project. Expansion would move the planning and building and permits departments out of the council chambers, where they currently oc

Oroville City Council holds preliminary budget hearing

OROVILLE – The Oroville City Council discussed a preliminary 2008 budget that is $92,505 more than the amended 2007 budget and still doesn’t include several items like city hall expansion, sewer improvements and a hoped-for airport grant.

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About 100 people came to the Sitzmark Ski Club’s benefit auction Nov. 19, where they ate, mingled and bid in both silent and live auctions to benefit the ski area.

Sitzmark benefit auction raises more than $6,000 for ski club

TONASKET – The Skitzmark Ski Club slalomed closer to the season with a benefit auction Nov. 17 at the Tonasket Eagles Club, raising more than $6,000.

About 100 people turned out for the silent auction and dinner, and more arrived later to bid during a live auction. Silent auction items ranged from a basket of potatoes, ski items and gift certificates at local spas.

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A view of the spillway of Enloe dam from the west bank of the Similkameen River. Okanogan County PUD recently released their Draft License Application to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for relicensing the hydroelectric dam.

Enloe Dam restoration efforts renewed

OROVILLE – Okanogan County Public Utility District has decided to renew its efforts to obtain a license from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to restore Enloe Dam on the Similkameen River above Oroville in order to once again generate hydroelectric power.

The dam, which has not been used to make electricity since it was decommissioned in 1958, has the potential to generate an average five megawatts of power and up to nine megawatts at peak generation, according to Okanogan County PUD Commissioner Ernie Bolz.

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Photo by Rick BramanGroups such as the Lake Osoyoos Association and the Osoyoos Water Quality Society are working to preserve the water quality in Lake Osoyoos, viewed here from a vineyard in Oroville. The Lake Osoyoos Association recently heard there may

Lake group gets boost from environmental specialist

OROVILLE – After electing a slate of officers at their Thursday, Nov. 1 meeting, the newly reformed Lake Osoyoos Association was told by a representative of the Department of Ecology that there would be some state help available to monitor lake quality.

Monitoring and testing Lake Osoyoos’ water quality for plant and animal life and for human use and consumption was adopted as the association’s number one goal. Other goals include determining the causes of water pollution and advising the public and appropriate government agencies of their findings, as well as helping these agencies in carrying out programs to improve the quality of the lake. Monitoring lake management and shoreline development and public education are the group’s other main goals.

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CRACK UP - Consulo Padilla is normally a fast apple packer for Gold Digger Apples, but teasing by her fellow workers as she posed for a picture led to a temporary break in the action as she got a case of the giggles. Padilla was packing for Gold Digger at

Market prices looking good

NORTH COUNTY – Managers at the two remaining packing houses in north Okanogan County agree that this year’s apple crop looks especially good and current apple prices should mean decent returns for growers.

“We’re almost done with Fujis, we still have a few coming in from the Brewster and Omak area,” said Greg Moser last week. “All the rest of our varieties like red and golden delicious are already off the trees.”

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Canadian beef ban should not be lifted, cattlemen say.

OMAK – Merely announcing a lift of the ban on imports of Canadian cattle led to a 50 percent drop in market prices local ranchers told U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell last Thursday.

Members of the Okanogan Cattlemen’s Association met with Sen. Cantwell in Omak at the Koala Grill to discuss what affect allowing Canadian beef back across the border into the United States would have on their industry.

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