Today is Monday, May. 2, 2016

NEWS
Warm weather turns streams loose, flooding roads and property

Warm weather turns streams loose, flooding roads and property

A spate of warm weather has been causing streams to overflow their banks and carve new channels, making some roads impassable and flooding private property around the valley. Some driveways, where people say they haven’t seen water for decades — if ever — have turned into ponds. Some of the runoff appears to be connected with wildfires …
Comment on update of shoreline plan

Comment on update of shoreline plan

Okanogan County’s update of its plan covering development and protections along lakes and rivers is a complicated document at 125 pages with eight appendices, maps and tables. After 10 years of …
County residents blame poor management, environmentalism for 2014–15 wildfires

County residents blame poor management, environmentalism for 2014–15 wildfires

They had a new audience, but it was a familiar refrain as Okanogan County residents still reeling from the wildfires of the past two summer argued for better forest management — in particular, through logging and grazing, but also thinning and prescribed burning — to reduce fire risk. U.S. Rep. Dan Newhouse brought his congressional colleague from Pennsylvania, Glenn...
Updated Westernization code ready for public review in Winthrop

Updated Westernization code ready for public review in Winthrop

A proposed thorough update of the Town of Winthrop’s Westernization Code is completed and ready for public review before adoption by the town council. The draft proposal will be discussed next Thursday (April 14) following the Winthrop Chamber of Commerce meeting in the Winthrop Barn, which begins at 8:30 a.m.
Legislation aims to increase prescribed burning in Washington

Legislation aims to increase prescribed burning in Washington

Legislation aimed at increasing the use of prescribed fire as a tool to prevent catastrophic wildfires was signed last week by Gov. Jay Inslee. The legislation directs the state Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to conduct a pilot project of “forest resiliency burning” in forests east of the Cascade Mountains in coordination with other agencies, and...
State funds allotted to help Twisp build new civic center

State funds allotted to help Twisp build new civic center

The Town of Twisp will be able to move ahead with plans to construct a new civic building and emergency operations center after the state Legislature appropriated $500,000 for the project in the capital budget. “This enables us to phase in the work now,” said Twisp Mayor Soo Ing-Moody, who has pushed for funding to replace...
School district may borrow money to fix facilities in less time

School district may borrow money to fix facilities in less time

The Methow Valley School District is proposing to borrow money so it can compress the schedule for facilities repairs and upgrades into four years instead of six. The upgrades, supported by a $4.5-million levy approved by voters last year, could be done more cost-effectively by combining some projects and taking advantage of lower costs, said Methow...
School district plans to begin buying seven new buses with levy proceeds

School district plans to begin buying seven new buses with levy proceeds

The Methow Valley School District is planning to buy seven new school buses over the next three years — two this August, three next year, and two in 2018. The school board directors approved the recommendation by Bud Hover, director of operations and capital projects, at their March 23 meeting. Voters approved paying $800,000 for six new buses...
Heavy runoff and sediment cause minor flooding, road closures around valley

Heavy runoff and sediment cause minor flooding, road closures around valley

Melting snow and saturated soils in parts of the Methow Valley have spawned new streams, caused small mudslides, and washed out roads that became inundated when culverts became clogged with sediment and an unusually high volume of water. One section of Rendezvous Road was so wet last week that a new culvert floated in the...
PUD breaks ground  on transmission line

PUD breaks ground on transmission line

Current and former staff and commissioners of the Okanogan County Public Utility District (PUD) gathered last week for a symbolic groundbreaking for the Pateros-Twisp transmission line, called a “momentous” occasion by PUD board president Scott Vejraska. PUD crews erected two power poles and connected a cross-arm and insulators at the ceremony on Friday (April 1)...