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  • Merkley Town Hall in Mitchell June 9th

    U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley|Updated Jun 6, 2024

    Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley announced today he will be holding six in-person town halls for Oregon communities in June: Coos and Curry counties on Friday, June 7; Klamath and Lake counties on Saturday, June 8; and Crook and Wheeler counties on Sunday, June 9. The events continue Merkley's 2024 town hall tour of Oregon, where he is holding a community conversation for each of the state's 36 counties.    "I hold a town hall for every Oregon county every...

  • Cris Patnode wins Gilliam Co. Judge election by landslide

    Stephen Allen|Updated May 30, 2024

    Cris Patnode has emerged victorious in the Primary Election for Gilliam County Judge and will be the county's next executive officer, capturing more than 61% of the vote. Patnode defeated Commissioner Leah Watkins and Condon Mayor Jim Hassing to win outright, with no need to hold a general election in the fall. Patnode, who was raised outside of Condon and now lives in Arlington, has served as the Gilliam Co. Justice of the Peace for 24 years. The Gilliam County Court is curre...

  • Cris Patnode wins Gilliam County Judge election

    Stephen Allen|Updated May 30, 2024

    Cris Patnode has emerged victorious in the Primary Election for Gilliam County Judge and will be the county's next executive officer, capturing more than 61% of the vote. The Primary Election was held on May 21 and garnered 57% participation from registered voters. Patnode defeated Commissioner Leah Watkins and Condon Mayor Jim Hassing. By eclipsing 51% of the vote, Patnode won the election outright, with no need to hold a general election in the fall. In all three precincts,...

  • Matt Davis wins Wheeler County Commissioner election

    Stephen Allen|Updated May 30, 2024

    Matt Davis will be the next Wheeler County Commissioner. Davis won the primary election in Wheeler County, with 61.6% of the vote. By eclipsing 51%, Davis wins the election outright and will be sworn into office in January. Matt Davis is a graduate of Spray High School and later attended the University of Oregon. Davis returned to Wheeler County with his wife, Coco, and their two daughters in 2018. Davis began working as the county's Planning Director that year, but later...

  • Senator Jeff Merkley holds townhall in Arlington

    Stephen Allen|Updated May 22, 2024

    Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley swept through Eastern Oregon on a three-day tour, holding townhalls in nine counties. Starting on Friday, May 17, Oregon's junior Senator started his townhall tour in Malheur County, and then went to Harney, and Grant County. On Saturday, Merkley held townhalls in Baker County, Union County, and Wallowa County. On Sunday, he met with constituents in Umatilla County, Morrow County, and in Gilliam County. At the Gronquist Building in Arlington,...

  • Your Vote: Primary Elections May 21

    Stephen Allen|Updated May 22, 2024

    It's election season and people in the tri-county area must finalize their primary ballots and have them mailed or submitted by May 21. County Clerks in Wheeler, Gilliam, and Sherman are preparing for the primary elections and several pivotal races will determine the future of each county. In Gilliam County, voters will cast ballots for County Judge and Commissioner #2. This comes on the heels of the recall election that was held on April 30, which ousted Judge Elizbeth...

  • Merkley announces townhalls in Eastern Oregon

    Press Release|Updated May 16, 2024

    Washington, D.C. – Oregon's U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley announced today he will be holding nine in-person town halls for Eastern Oregon counties in May: Malheur, Harney, and Grant counties on Friday, May 17; Baker, Union, and Wallowa counties on Saturday, May 18; and Umatilla, Morrow, and Gilliam counties on Sunday, May 19. The events continue Merkley's 2024 town hall tour of Oregon, where he is holding a community conversation for each of the state's 36 counties....

  • Q & A with candidates for Wheeler Co. Commissioner #2

    Stephen Allen|Updated Apr 24, 2024

    Wheeler County will hold primary elections on May 21 and ballots will be mailed out next week. The race for Wheeler County Commissioner is one of the best in the region. Three candidates with diverse experiences and who are deeply invested in Wheeler County are vying to become the next county commissioner. The three candidates are Matt Davis, Candy Humphreys, and Zach Bruce. We asked each of them five questions – here are their responses. MATT DAVIS TJ: Please tell us about y...

  • Chairman Bentz to lead water, wildlife, and fisheries hearing on the gray wolves

    Press Release|Updated Apr 24, 2024

    WASHINGTON, DC - Congressman Cliff Bentz (OR-02) has announced that on May 3rd in Minnesota, the Congressional Subcommittee of Natural Resources on Water, Wildlife, and Fisheries will convene a field hearing addressing the growing harm being done by the gray wolf to elk, deer, moose, farmers, ranchers, and outdoorsmen. This hearing will provide a platform for expert testimony on the multifaceted implications of the gray wolf surge, including its economic, ecological, and...

  • Statement from Cliff Bentz regarding his vote in favor of "The Further Consolidated Appropriations Act" (FCAA)

    Press Release|Updated Mar 22, 2024

    WASHINGTON, D.C. - Congressman Cliff Bentz, (OR-2) released the following statement regarding his vote in favor of the "The Further Consolidated Appropriations Act" (FCAA): "This was a difficult vote. There is much I dislike in this bill, but when we Republicans barely control only one of the three branches of government (House, Senate, White House), the results our team obtained after months of work and thousands of amendments are deserving of serious respect. Additionally,...

  • March 12th filing deadline for Gilliam primaries

    Updated Mar 7, 2024

    The deadline to file for Gilliam County elections is approaching. Anyone wishing to be a candidate must file with the Gilliam County Clerk by 5 PM on March 12. Residents will cast their votes for key positions that will shape the county's future. Among the contested positions is that of County Judge – a nonpartisan role with a significant six-year term. The candidates so far are: Cris Patnode, Jim Hassing, and Leah Watkins. In the nonpartisan race for County Commissioner P...

  • Recall Petitions filed for Gilliam County Judge and Commissioner

    Stephen Allen|Updated Mar 4, 2024

    Judge Elizabeth Farrar Campbell will face her second recall and Commissioner Pat Shannon his first, after petitions were filed with the Gilliam County Clerk, Ellen Wagenaar on February 22. A committee called We the People of Gilliam County – Farrar, and We the People Gilliam County – Shannon, have filed the petitions. The chief sponsor for the recall petition against Judge Farrar Campbell is Denny Newell of Arlington (Blalock). The chief petitioner to recall Commissioner Pat S... Full story

  • HB 4102 passes House

    Press Release|Updated Mar 4, 2024

    SALEM, OR - House Bill 4102 passed the floor of the Oregon House of Representatives this past Thurdsay. Representative Greg Smith (R-Heppner) is the legislation's Chief Sponsor and he carried the bill on the floor. Last session, HB 3409 established the Natural and Working Lands Fund. The fund will promote public private partnerships that protect the environment and rural Oregon's way of life. HB 4102 will ensure that Oregon is positioned to receive, directly into the Natural...

  • OP-ED: Lawmakers must address flaws with measure 110

    Dave Drotzmann, Mayor of Hermiston and President of the League of Oregon Cities|Updated Feb 26, 2024

    Three years ago, Oregon voters approved a ballot measure that would have dire consequences for the health and safety of our communities. Measure 110 may have been passed with the best intentions, but it has proven to be an abject failure. It has exacerbated the drug crisis while offering little incentive for users to seek treatment. The law does nothing to prevent public drug use on our streets. It has left us with a system that lacks the authority to hold individuals accountable for their actions, resulting in more crime...

  • Deadline to file for Mitchell Mayor, City Council due March 12

    Stephen Allen|Updated Feb 16, 2024

    A special election will be held for the next mayor and city council for the City of Mitchell on May 21, 2024. The deadline for filing is fast approaching, and submissions will need to be made no later than March 12, 2024. Last year, a mass resignation of city council members and the town's mayor and clerk brought the town government to a stand-still. Just one councilor remained in office and the city was unable to issue water bills or do business. Several community members...

  • Ten State Senators barred from reelection, upending Oregon politics

    Stephen Allen|Updated Feb 9, 2024

    Of the controversial ballot measures that Oregon voters have passed in recent years, perhaps few will be as influential as Measure 113. Unlike Measure 110 that decriminalized drugs and Measure 114 that put restrictions on firearms, Measure 113 was not extremely controversial. But while Measure 110 and 114 look to be struck down or replaced, Measure 113 is likely here to stay. It's impact on Oregon politics are significant. Approved in 2022, Ballot Measure 113 aimed to prevent...

  • Public hammers Gilliam Court on restructure to board of commissioners

    Stephen Allen|Updated Jan 25, 2024

    Concerns over a possible restructuring of Gilliam County's government brought several people to the Gilliam County Court session in Arlington on December 20, 2023. To start the court meeting, local residents stepped forward to provide public testimony, with many under the impression that the court would vote immediately to suspend the Gilliam County Court and to restructure it into a board of commissioners. However, the court did not take up the matter of restructuring and...

  • Gilliam Co. Judge Elizabeth Farrar Campbell will not seek re-election

    Elizabeth Farrar|Updated Jan 25, 2024

    CONDON, OR - Gilliam County Judge Elizabeth Farrar Campbell has announced that she will not seek re-election to a second term in 2024. "When I ran for office in 2018, I shared a clear vision for Gilliam County: promoting smart economic growth through investments in education, housing, and broadband; modernizing County government by removing judicial functions from the County Judge and building trust and co-equal partnerships with the County Commissioners; and encouraging...

  • New Sherman County Commissioner sworn in

    Judge Joe Dabulskis|Updated Jan 17, 2024

    The Sherman County Court is proud to announce the appointment of its newest member, Justin Miller. Commissioner Miller was sworn in October 21, 2020 to finish the term of Commissioner Tom McCoy who retired at the end of September, 2020. Commissioner Miller states "I am proud to have grown up in Sherman County and am grateful for the experiences, services and support that were provided to me. I feel fortunate to have benefited from a K-12 education, community support in...

  • Judge Cris Patnode endorses Ron McDermid

    Cris Patnode, Gilliam County Justice of the Peace|Updated Jan 17, 2024

    To Whom It May Concern: I have known Judge Ron McDermid since taking the Bench in 2003, as Gilliam County Justice of the Peace. Upon taking the bench, I learned that one of the best assets of a judge is another judge. Judge McDermid quickly became a mentor and someone whom I greatly respect. Due to our geography and close proximity, I learned that Sherman County Justice Court and Gilliam County Justice Court had many similarities, and that it would be advantageous for us each...

  • Wheeler Co. Judge Lynn Morley faces recall election

    Stephen Allen|Updated Jan 17, 2024

    On May 1, a recall petition for Wheeler County Judge Lynn Morley was accepted by the Oregon Elections Division. Ballots for the special recall election are expected to be mailed out this week and election day will be on June 10. Mickey Dodd of Mitchell is the chief petitioner. This is the second time Mr. Dodd has filed a recall petition against Judge Morley. The original recall petition was filed in late 2019. It was subsequently thrown out by the Oregon Elections Division in...

  • Let's Talk – a media conversation with voters

    Updated Nov 29, 2023

    News organizations and nonprofit groups in Oregon have teamed up to learn what voters want candidates for governor to be talking about as they compete for votes. They seek Oregonians to participate in a "Let's Talk" 90-minute virtual listening session soon to share their understanding of the race through the media. There is no cost to join in this nonpartisan event. Voters would join others via the Zoom platform to discuss off the record what information they want to know...

  • Live Updates: Election 2020

    Updated Nov 29, 2023

    1:00 AM Unofficial results from the Secretary of State are coming in for elections in Gilliam, Wheeler, and Sherman counties. The unofficial results show that Pat Shannon has won the race for Gilliam Co. Commissioner. Shannon leads in all three precincts of Arlington, Condon and Lonerock. Wheeler County Sheriff Mike Smith has won the election to keep his job. Sheriff Smith was challenged by former Deputy Mitch Elliott, in a write-in campaign. Sheriff Smith won the election...

  • Governor Kate Brown announces Sherman County Justice Court vacancy

    Updated Nov 25, 2023

    SALEM, OR - Governor Kate Brown announced today that she is accepting applications for a judicial vacancy on the Sherman County Justice Court created by the planned retirement of Judge Ron McDermid. The Governor thanked Judge McDermid for his dedicated judicial service, and announced that she will fill the position by appointment. Judge McDermid's retirement takes effect July 31, 2022. The Governor's office will use its standard Circuit Court Interest Form for this Justice...

  • Wheeler County voters approve Greater Idaho border move

    Stephen Allen|Updated Nov 25, 2023

    All three cities and precincts in Wheeler County voted in favor of moving Idaho's border to include Wheeler County. Both Wheeler County and Morrow County voted in favor of the advisory question on Tuesday. Passage of the advisory question begins the process of studying a change in state borders. Changes to the border would have to be passed by both Oregon and Idaho state congresses and governors. It would ultimately need approval from the U.S. Congress. With the addition of...

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