Tag Archives: river

Floatplane fuselage donated for entrance feature – Campbell River Mirror

Posted: February 22, 2017 at 4:38 am

Have fuselage, will travel. Acting Mayor Ron Kerr, Bill Alder of Sealand Aviation and Jonathan Calderwood and Brian Shaw of the Campbellton Neighbourhood Association pose with a fuselage donated by Sealand for a floatplane entrance feature to Campbell River.

image credit: Alistair Taylor/Campbell River Mirror

The project to build a new Campbell River entrance feature took a big step towards reality recently when a key component of the structure was acquired.

Sealand Aviation is donating a complete Beaver floatplane to serve as an entrance feature to the Campbellton entrance to Campbell River. Bill Alder and Nancy Marshall acquired the final component, the fuselage, and are ready to begin assembling it over the next year.

The concept involves placing a complete floatplane on a concrete platform and pylon to hold it up in the air. The feature has been set for a space between the lanes of Highway 19 as it comes down the hill into Campbellton at 14th Avenue.

The project is being done under the auspices of the Campbellton Neighbourhood Association which has been working on improving the historic district and re-asserting its place as the northern entrance into the City of Campbell River. To that end, projects are focused on enhancing the northern gateway with Highway 19A improvements, park establishment and enhancing public access to the Campbell River itself as it passes through Campbellton.

A gathering of city, neighbourhood and Sealand principals got a look at the fuselage on Monday in an effort to encourage business and volunteers to step up and complete the project without using municipal funding.

Alder supports this project because it speaks to Campbell Rivers aviation heritage and future.

Im really pushing aviation in Campbell River, Alder said. Its (the feature) kind of unique, I dont know of any Beavers in Canada sitting on a pylon. I can just visulalize it driving down that hill. Its going to be something.

Alder said that if all the aspects of the project come together in good time, the project could be completed in a year. Besides the fuselage, Sealand Aviation has all the other components of a Beaver floatplane floats, wings, etc.

We have lots and lots of parts kicking around here, Alder said. We have pretty much all the other components.

The fuselage was originally acquired for a customer in Texas but that project fell through.

During the process we built up a bare-bones fuselage for them to take down there to do some structural testing on it, Alder said.

Sealand Aviation, City of Campbell River and Campbellton Neighbourhood Association principals pose with a complete Beaver floatplane, which is how the floatplane that will grace the northern entrance to Campbell River will look at Highway 19 and 14th Avenue. Alistair Taylor/Campbell River Mirror

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Floatplane fuselage donated for entrance feature – Campbell River Mirror

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Steve Robitaille: Removing dam would revitalize economy – Gainesville Sun

Posted: at 4:09 am

By Steve Robitaille Special to The Sun

As president of Florida Defenders of the Environment, whose history includes stopping the completion of the Cross Florida Barge Canal and advocating for restoration of a free-flowing Ocklawaha River, I am no doubt identified as someone inherently hostile to bass-fishing interests and tournaments at the Rodman Dam pool.

As someone who likes to fish and who recently took his sons for a fishing adventure in the Everglades, I would like to clear up some misconceptions as to why I wish to set the Ocklawaha free again.

First, I want to see a return to the greater numbers and diversity of fish species that were once available in the river. There is a great photo of the late Lester Teuton, who was baptized on the Ocklawaha. Hes holding a string of fish the likes and size of which had virtually disappeared by the time he died in 2014 at age 95.

I know there is considerable satisfaction in pulling a prize-winning largemouth bass out of the Rodman pool. But I know trophy bass are being caught in the St. Johns River. It just seems wrong to deny folks up and down the Ocklawaha the opportunity for a good catch in return for the impoundment of a single species of trophy fish.

I know the annual Rodman fishing tournament has long been associated with a boost in the local economy, but a drive through Palatka and Putnam County reveals that the economic vitality of the region still suffers. It is in need of a more diversified ecotourism industry.

Paddle-boats once took tourists up the river to Silver Springs. Visitors fell under the spell of manatee, teaming pools of large fish and a crystal-clear Silver Springs. Now only the rare manatee gets past the dam, unable to find the warm springs they counted on for survival and that are now submerged except when draw-downs occur. And Silver Springs, the jewel of Floridas natural wonders, now suffers from reduced flow. Where once black clouds of fish were seen suspended in the crystal-clear depths below, their diminished numbers now swim in a cloudy, water-starved spring.

A survey that the University of Florida food and resource economics department is conducting suggests the promise that a restored river would significantly increase the numbers of canoe and kayak paddlers. Pontoon-boat tours would replace the tourist steamboats of years gone by, and hikers, bikers, birders and myriad others outdoor recreationalists would be attracted to the region and support an ever-expanding number of businesses who would cater to their needs.

Millennials hold the promise to a revitalized recreationally based economy in Putnam County and along the Ocklawaha watershed. They like to fish too, but are more likely to be found in a kayak than in a bass boat. Their increased numbers are also likely to spend more money at local businesses.

Finally, if youve been watching the news, dams have a way of wreaking havoc on the watersheds they are intended to manage. For example, the Orville Dam near Sacramento, California, is experiencing serious engineering problems with age. Dams are expensive to maintain and upset the natural ecology everywhere they have been constructed. The days of dams are numbered. Between 1915 and 1975, 46 dams in the U.S. came down. Between 1976 and 2014, that number jumped to 1,040. Not a single dam was built after 2014.

A dam was removed on the Suwannee River near the Florida border after upsetting the pattern of natural fires and the hydrologic health of the Okefenokee Swamp. The use of structural water control has nearly destroyed the Florida Everglades and will cost taxpayers billions of dollars in wetlands restoration.

The clock on the Rodman dam is ticking, and the inevitable cost of needed upkeep and repairs will not be covered by proceeds from bass-fishing tournaments. Also lost to the people of Florida is a large amount of freshwater that evaporates every day the Rodman pool remains in place. With freshwater supplies ever more strained in North Florida, a net loss of 5 to 10 million gallons per day for the sole purpose of fishing is an extravagance we can no longer afford. Its simply not in the public interest of the people in our region.

So lets find a better location for a bass-fishing tournament in Putnam County. There are potential locations along the St. Johns and Ocklawaha where some of the largest bass have been caught, and not at the expense of damming the states most unique river.

Florida Defenders of the Environment is committed to working with area residents, businesses and community organizations to tell our elected representatives that money misspent on barge canals and dams would now be better invested in the flow of green ecotourism dollars that a free-flowing Ocklawaha would help release.

Steve Robitaille lives in Gainesville and is president of Florida Defenders of the Environment.

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‘Flood fighting is in our DNA’: To live by the Feather River is to know its power and danger – Los Angeles Times

Posted: February 20, 2017 at 6:47 pm

The early settlers snatched up the rich, loamy land along the Feather River to grow grapes and orchards.

Edward Mathews, an Irishman who fled the potato famine, was peddling vegetables and didnt have the cash for that kind of soil.

During heavy rains, the Yuba River would flow so hard into the Feather at Marysville, it pushed the Feather back north into Jack Slough, named for a freed slave who in 1861 sold Mathews 200 acres of its poor red soil.

On that backwashed clay, the Mathews clan would scratch out a living grazing livestock.

If you came into the bank with red soil on your boots, they wouldnt loan you money, said Edwards great-grandson Charlie Mathews, 77, who lives on the land today.

But the Mathews family did well for themselves. The arrival of a type of ricefrom Japan that grew in sunlight this far north transformed the cursed clay into a blessing: Water didnt drain through it, giving the ricegrass the pooled paddies it thrived in.

Life in the region has long evolved around the ebb, flow and overflow of the Feather River. Its meandering course and merciless moods dictated where soil was good, which crops farmers grew, where they built towns, how deep they dug wells, where families went broke or dynasties were born.

When California dammed the Feather River as part of its monumental project to bring water to Southern California and other parts of the state, the river became more predictable, but not totally so. Levees blew out in 1986 and 1997 and caused widespread flooding, similar to inundations that hit before the Oroville Dam was finished in 1967.

And the crisis at the dam last week, when more than 100,000 people wereevacuated due to potential failure of an emergency spillway, showed that nature relentlessly works to rip down humanitys efforts to control it. Residents remain anxious as another big storm is expected to hit the area Monday.

Farmers here are keenly aware of one point: They live at the pleasure of the river.

Al Montna remembersthe eerie moonlight glimmer off the tin roofs of houses floating downstream.

Its been more than six decades since the floodwaters hit, but he still pictures it perfectly. They were the homes of his classmates.

He was 10 at the time, living south of Yuba City near the river. His dad was busy trying to move equipment at the farm a few miles away, leaving his wife and kids perched on high ground of the family home.

I heard this roar. I can still hear it, Montna said. It was Christmas Eve 1955.

The flood, caused by a levee break at Shanghai Bend, killed 38 people and destroyed 450 homes. Waters rose to the roofs of low-lying barns.

Seeing the waters surrounding them, Montnas family evacuated to the nearby Sutter Buttes dormant lava domes that loom 2,000 feet above the floodplain like a volcanic beacon for the bedraggled refugees of the valley floor.

His fathers crops were lost and most of the family farm was destroyed. His dad feared financial ruin and died of a heart attack three months later.

Montna lived through two more great floods along the river in 1986 and 1997. But the thought of pulling up stakes never crossed his mind.

Were very ingrained here. My grandfather came here as a French immigrant. … He drowned in that river, Montna said. This is home. This is part of our soul.

Montna Farms not only recovered but is prospering, he said, specializing in premium, short-grain Japanese rice used in sushi.

When county officials ordered the emergency evacuation of Yuba City last week, many residents again fled to the buttes for safety. Montna took different measures.

As a board member of Levee District 1 of Sutter County, he and his entire work crew scrambled to shore up the levees, looking for leaks that could lead to bigger breaches.

Flood fighting is in our DNA, he said.

A few miles upstream on Feb. 12, Sarb Johl listened in disbelief to the alert that the emergency spillway on Oroville Dam might fail within 60 minutes. He loaded his wife and 92-year-old mother into a car and told them to drive to stay withfamily in the hilly Sacramento suburb of Roseville. He stayed an extra hour talking to other farmers and fellow officials on his levee board, determining what to do.

We didnt have time to rationally plan: Would the water break to the west or the east? Could the levees hold it? You have to believe it when someone is telling you a 15-foot-high wall of water is coming down. That is a lot of water, Johl said.

His father, who came from Punjab, India, began farming peaches and prunes on this reclaimed land in the 1960s. The area is known as Yuba CountyLevee District 10, which was formed in 1909 to make the floodplain available to farmers.

While most orchard growers here dont directly draw from the river, they still survive on it. Because the state water project continued to direct the Feather River water down its historical course, the river replenishes the aquifer as it always has. Johl pumps water from wells and now conserves it by using drip irrigation for his trees, which favor the porous loam slurried down from the mountains over eons.

On Feb. 13, seeing that the spillway had not collapsed, Johl came back to move his equipment onto the levee. On the other side, the silty river sifted slowly through a wild land of oak and cottonwood. A family of deer picked delicately over the bank and into the orchards safety, as one of Johls workers tried to fix a valve in the levee that the farm needed for the land to drain.

His family had survived the last two big floods, but the notion that the dam could fail a nightmare that had never crossed his mind spooked him. As soon as he was done, he got in his truck and headed to Roseville.


The Oroville Dam was sold to residents as a flood control measure, but no one who understood water politics ever doubted its core purpose was to bring more water to Southern California. Population studies in the 1950s predicted millions of people would continue toflow into the region with not enough water, even with canals from the Colorado River and Eastern Sierras, to meet their needs.

Plans to dam the stormy rivers of the North Coast the Eel, Mad, Klamath and Smith were scuttled as too costly or controversial. That left the Sacramento Rivers main tributary, the Feather, to become the linchpin of the states ambitious new water project.

The three forks of the Feather gathered snowmelt tributaries from nearly 6,000 square miles of the Northern Sierra and Southern Cascades, converging in the canyons north of the small town of Oroville. The main stem then flowed another 71 miles to the Sacramento River, and on to San Francisco Bay.

Govs. Earl Warren and Goodwin Knight helped get what was then called the Feather River Project rolling in the 1950s, and the deadly 1955 flood gave it a needed dose of urgency. Gov. Pat Brown lobbied groups up and down the state notably the powerful Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, which feared the project might threaten its legal battles with Arizona for Colorado River water to bring it to fruition.

By the time the renamed State Water Project was largely completed in the 1970s, the flow was diverted in the Sacramento Delta before it flowed into the San Francisco Bay. From the Clifton Court Forebay, it was pumped up into the 444-mileCalifornia Aqueduct that would follow the new Interstate 5. With branch canals and massive pumps and siphons to cross hills and mountains, Feather River water now poured out of taps in the Bay Area, Bakersfield, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Los Angeles and the Inland Empire.

But during rainy winters, the old levee system just below the Oroville Dam still struggled to contain the flow.

In Olivehurst, Mary Jane Griego said the evacuation order brought flashbacks of the floods in 1986 and 1997.

Griego, owner of Dukes Diner,was stopped at a red light outside of Yuba City that night in 1986 when a police patrol car screeched into the intersection.

He saidthe levee broke. The water is coming, Griego recalled. Then she heard a rumble and saw a churning wave of water heading toward her. It was like a scene from The Poseidon Adventure.

That flood blasted through the county mall in the nearby town of Linda, which still stands gutted and empty.

After the 1997 flood, Griego decided to run for Yuba County supervisor, with her top campaign issue to fix the levees in the southern portion of the county. She won and, since that time, the levees have been improved and fortified through the more populated areas.

While farmers and officials along the river understand the hydrology around them like cardiologists know arteries and veins, millions of other Californians rely on the same system with varying degrees of awareness. Some know enough to complain about its great flaws its waste by evaporation or its environmental impact. Others marvel at its grand ambition, allowing great cities to exist where they otherwise could not. Some dont even know it exists.

North of Lake Oroville in the small wooded town of Magalia, Keith Noble runs a hunting and fishing shop that depends on anglers coming to the lake. With the lake closed due to the spillway crisis, he was irked that several bass tournaments had been scrubbed.

Noble thinks the state could have prevented the damage if officials hadnt neglected the spillway all these years in his mind, another example of the northern reaches of California getting short shrift by the big-city liberals controlling Sacramento.

At the southern end of the project, Feather River water pours out of a 28-mile-long pipeline into the Lake Perris reservoir, more than 500 miles from its source and nearly 700 feet higher in elevation.

Saddled between high hills of boulders and white sage, the lake draws campers, boaters and fishermen from across the region. The water teems with rainbow trout, Florida bluegill, black crappie and carp. Anglers there have caught record-size Alabama spotted bass.

But the dam has its own problems. In 2005, the state Department of Water Resources discovered that parts of the foundation might be at risk during an earthquake and ordered the water lowered by 25 feet.Construction to fix the problem is expected to be completed by early next year. But the drought reduced the lake by an additional 17 feet.

Brian Place, manager ofthe boat rental and fishing shop at Lake Perris, looks out at the low water and wonders when the state will open the spigot to bring it back up.

He says Water Resources told him the lake would come up 10 feet in January, but its just starting to fill.

Within the last week, its come up about 3 feet, he said.

He hopes the state sends the water before the fish lay their eggs in spring, and then maintains it at that level, so a sudden change in depth doesnt kill off the spawn.

He can only wait and see.

State bureaucracy feeds Lake Perris, and no meteorologist can read that forecast.




Twitter: @philwillon


The government failure at the heart of the Oroville Dam crisis

Oroville Dam is about to face its next big test as a new storm moves into the area

Life below Oroville Dam: Stoicism, faith … and cars poised for a fast getaway

Oroville Dam is just part of California’s crumbling infrastructure

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‘Flood fighting is in our DNA’: To live by the Feather River is to know its power and danger – Los Angeles Times

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Sounds of freedom rattling to far reaches of area – News – The Daily … – Jacksonville Daily News

Posted: February 19, 2017 at 11:45 am

Sarah Hauck

What has been dubbed the sound of freedom has been a constant reminder of the areas proximity to Camp Lejeune, particularly in the last week.

As part of an extended training exercise aboard Camp Lejeune artillery blasts have been heard into the wee hours of the morning, causing quite a stir even farther and later than normal.

While many residents are used to the blasts and booms that sometimes rattle windows and doors, many will admit that the last weeks activities have been more, well, active than usual.

The excessive military-related noise is scheduled to end Monday, Camp Lejeune-New River Director of Public Affairs Nat Fahy said.

Some residents have contacted to base to share their frustrations, including some asking if such exercises could be moved elsewhere, he said.

Due to recent fiscal constraints and budget cuts, the Marine Corps is emphasizing home station training, which saves the cost of transporting large amounts of Marines, ammunition, and military equipment to remote locations, Fahy said in response to the residents concerns. Additionally, due to the return of many Marines who were deployed in Afghanistan and Iraq for the last 15 years, many more Marines are at Camp Lejeune. This means that there are more Marines conducting more training so that they can stay ready to fight when the nation calls on them.

A Hubert resident since 1987, Dawn Morton said the occasional blast has become something she and her husband have become accustomed to.

There seems to be less down time between the largest booms, and it usually doesnt continue after 11 p.m. she said.

Morton said the extra noise in the later hours kept her awake the other night, something she isnt used to with the noise.

Camp Lejeune issued a noise advisory early last week to warn the community of the quiet hour violations due to the exercise.

Morton said, however, the cracks in the sheet rock, pictures being broken when they are vibrated off the walls and her pets seeming nervous during the explosions are things she expected when she bought her home.

Were not military, but we love this area and respect and cheer for our military neighbors, she said.

Former Marine and Queens Creek resident Tim Carmody said the blasts have woken his 2-year-old up, which is frustrating. One of the worst parts for him? The late night shoots after 12 a.m. when you are awoken at 1-2 a.m. when your day starts at 3:30-4 a.m., he said.

Carmody said his familiarity with artillery from his time in the military hasnt been able to prevent him from being startled a time or two by the current operations.

The family never would have settled in Hubert had they known the disturbance from the base exercises would be so common, he said.

I lived off of Gum Branch in the Half Moon area and dont recall hearing it, Carmody said. The worst there was the flight path, which wasnt too bad.

In the initial noise advisory Camp Lejeune issued cited weather also playing a factor in how readily heard the artillery blasts may be during the exercise.

On occasions, weather conditions can also greatly affect hownoisetravels, Fahy previously told the Daily News. Variations in temperatures at higher atmospheres can create a trap-like effect that bounce sound waves back toward the ground, creating areas of high intensity sound miles away from the sounds source.

The additional artillery noise outside of quiet hours is part of a comprehensive live fire and maneuver exercise supported by 10th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, Fahy said.

Quiet hours are normally 12:01 – 6 a.m. Monday-Saturday and from 12:01 a.m.-noon on Sundays, Fahy said.

The base releases a noise report every Friday in ongoing effort to keep the community informed.

That report can be found at lejeune.marines.mil/news/noise-advisories.

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Bangkok city guide: what to do plus the best hotels, restaurants and bars – The Guardian

Posted: February 18, 2017 at 4:12 am

Floods, protests, power struggles, a military takeover Krungthep, known to the rest of the world as Bangkok, has endured more than its share of hardships recently. The loss of the countrys beloved King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who remained remarkably popular throughout his 70-year reign, hit particularly hard last year. Thailands populace is nothing if not resilient, though: after a dozen coups dtat in less than a century, they have to be and, in spite of it all, the capital continues to flourish and, in the process, reshape its identity.

For decades, this was a city that imported everything, to which strings of glitzy megamalls attests. But somewhere along the way, Thailand began to foster its own considerable creative pool. Look closely and youll notice that generic luxury brands are ceding shelf space to funkier fashions by Thai designers; local chefs proudly flaunt family recipes on the hottest tables in town; and even north-eastern Thai folk music is in the midst of a revival.

Bangkoks historic heart may rest on temple-studded Rattanakosin Island, but its contemporary pulse is scattered throughout smaller, splintered neighbourhoods in Sukhumvit, Sathorn and Silom and can be harder to pinpoint. Travellers looking to tap into the zeitgeist should venture past the backpacker cocoon of Khao San Road and make their way towards nearby Phra Athit Road, a boho hangout with live music venues and restaurants near the Chao Phraya river, then make a beeline for Chinatown. On Soi Nana, off Charoen Krung Road, minutes from Cantonese holes-in-the-wall and stores selling traditional herbal remedies, shophouses are being refurbished into galleries and unpretentious bars.

Booming, chaotic, at times overwhelming, but never, ever boring, Bangkok is more culturally diverse, complex and compelling than ever.

After stopping by celeb chef Ian Kittichais signature restaurant for updated Thai classics, such as massaman-braised lamb shanks and jasmine-infused panna cotta, youll want to learn how to cook like the maestro. Classes at Issaya Cooking Studio teach some of the chefs best-loved recipes, plus insights into everything from mixology to sous-vide techniques. Courses from 2,000 baht (45), issayastudio.com

Bangkoks art movement has blossomed in recent years. Artha Gallery keeps the emphasis on regional talent from Thailand, Myanmar and Vietnam. Over in Sathorn, head to Sathorn 11 Art Space, which features exhibitions on the ground floor and four resident artist studios above, and H Gallery, with edgy works by Asian artists in a converted mansion. Closer to the riverside, be sure to visit Bridge and The Jam Factory, housed in a sprawling multipurpose complex designed by starchitect Duangrit Bunnag.

An industrial space with eclectic collections, Speedy Grandma fills up with creative types at weekends. Treading the line between gallery and bar, Cho Why is one of several revamped shophouses injecting new energy into Chinatown. Events range from a street-art fest to a rooftop paella party. Across the street at 23 Bar and Gallery, the artsy incarnation of one of the citys legendary dives, expect indie tunes and no-nonsense drinks.

With more than 8,000 stalls selling everything from parakeets to pottery, Chatuchak Weekend Market, up by the Mo Chit BTS Skytrain station, remains the one to beat. Go early or late, when the tropical temperatures are more forgiving, as navigating the 27 sections can prove a dizzying experience. Plan for a post-shopping sundowner at Viva 8, a ramshackle bar with excellent mojitos where DJs spin house. Many up-and-coming Thai designers try to make it here first, so keep an eye out for next seasons labels before they hit the big time.

Head to Talad Rod Fai (Sri Nakarin Soi 51) and Talad Rod Fai 2 (Esplanade Complex) for all sorts of vintage bric-a-brac. At the Rot Boran Market (The Walk, Kaset-Nawamin road), known as the Classic Car Market, VW bugs and other old-school autos find new life as pop-ups selling just about everything.

After visiting the requisite temples Wat Saket for the view, Wat Phra Kaew for the glittering, gilded everything, and Wat Pho for a massage and seeing all manner of standing, sitting and reclining Buddhas head to the Thonburi side of the river for this lesser-known cultural gem: a teak house decorated with quirky sculptures. Shadow puppet performances, a traditional art that is becoming increasingly scarce, are worth seeing, but be sure to call ahead, as showtimes are irregular. 315 Wat Tong Salangam, Phet Kasem Road, +66 2 868 5279

If the concrete jungle becomes a bit wearing, consider a cycling trip over to Phra Pradaeng, a mangrove-covered peninsula on the western side of the Chao Phraya. ABC Amazing Bangkok Cyclist offers half-day tours for 29pp, including longtail boat transfers and mountain bike rentals, realasia.net

Salty, sweet and screaming hot, Bangkoks street food is adored by all strata of society. Hygiene is sometimes questionable and MSG rampant, but that shouldnt stop anyone from dining like a king on a shoestring budget. Keep your eyes peeled for rib-sticking jook (rice porridge with pork crackling and raw egg), comforting khao mun gai (chicken and rice) or its rarer, biryani-inspired cousin khao mok gai, crispy hoi tod (eggy mussel or oyster pancakes), fatty khao kha moo (meltingly tender braised pork leg with gravy), Isaan-style jim jum (hot pot), and the ubiquitous trio of gai yaang, som tom and khao niew (grilled chicken with spicy papaya salad and sticky rice). Noodles, including yen ta fo (neon-red glass noodles with tofu), ban mee (thin egg noodles often served with wontons), suki (bean thread noodles, egg, cabbage and seafood or meat) and richly flavoured kuai tiao ruea (boat noodles in a spiced, blood-enriched broth with offal), are served around the clock and can be ordered haeng (dry or stir-fried) or nam (wet with soup broth). For sugar fiends, khao niew mamuang (mango sticky rice) is a dependable go-to, but consider branching out to khanom krok (custardy coconut confections) and the dangerously craveable kluay kaek (deep-fried bananas in a coconut batter).

Gentrification has edged out many of Sukhumvits street eats, which means travelling a bit further to find larger pockets. Victory Monument and the surrounding area has an abundance, as do Silom and the historic areas of the city. Chinatown, especially Yaowarat and Charoen Krung roads, is packed with stalls that have been serving the same dishes for generations.

It might have started out as an artisanal pickle cannery in a hostel, but this eatery is currently whipping up some of the most interesting fare in town. As the name references, 80% of ingredients are local, while the remaining 20% allow for creative wiggle room. Chef Napol Jantraget delights in genre-bending plates like charcoal-grilled squid with fingeroot glaze, black garlic paste, popped rice berries, roasted peanuts and local sour greens that are rooted in Thai traditions, but also draw on his time at a brasserie in Toronto. 1052-1054 Charoen Krung Road, +66 2 639 1135, on Facebook

Duangporn Bo Songvisava and Dylan Jones, a Thai-Australian chef duo who cut their teeth at Londons Nahm, are best-known for their uncompromising Thai fine-dining eatery Bo.lan. The pairs second offering ditches the fancier trappings in favour of gutsy countryside bites, best washed down with a Chang beer or a whisky-soda. Order a couple of rounds and nibble on sai ouwa (coconut-smoked northern sausage, 4) and kor moo yang (grilled pork neck with tamarind sauce, 5), while deciding which mains to share. 394/35 Maharaj Road,+66 2 622 2291, errbkk.com

Rare Khon Kaen and Trat recipes from the owners grandmother help explain this cosy places enduring popularity. Its hard to order wrong, but steer away from the usual pad thai and opt for khai jiew pu (omelette stuffed with crabmeat, 3) or ka lum tod nam pla (stir-fried Chinese cabbage, 2), an umami bomb anointed with pungent fermented fish sauce. 160/11 Soi 55 Sukhumvit road, +66 2 714 7508, supannigaeatingroom.com

Bangkoks sizable Indian diaspora has given rise to some excellent eateries, including this number, which steers clear of cliched curries and peppers in subtler nods to the subcontinent, such as the decorative latticework derived from mosques and cheeky broken-English signs in the bathroom. Order the gently spiced lamb sheekh kebab (9) or the house-made paneer tikka (8), which is as silky as cheesecake and just as rich. After dinner, walk down the street to a darkened alley where, behind a door by an abandoned phone booth, salsa dancers shimmy to live bands at Havana Social, the owners hidden Cuban-inspired speakeasy. 38/8 Soi 11 Sukhumvit Road, Fraser Suites Hotel, +66 89 307 1111, charcoalbkk.com

Ash Sutton, the genius behind bars including Iron Fairies and Maggie Choos, outdid himself with this hideaways stripped-down, brooding aesthetic and succinct Prohibition-era cocktail list. A gleaming copper distillery serves as the centrepiece and produces the places namesake elixir, a south-east Asian spin on gin, fermented with a heady mix of fresh pineapple, coconut, lemongrass, ginger and juniper. Park Lane, Sukhumvit 63, on Facebook

Follow the sounds of soul and funk four nights a week to one of Bangkoks best live music spots. The lack of a cover charge and the rollicking house party vibe help explain why the crowds keep coming, even when the tiny joint is past capacity. Bigger bands often see the party spill out onto the street, which doesnt seem to bother anybody one bit. 945 Charoen Krung road, on Facebook

Slide open an unmarked wooden door in Thonglor and step into this dimly lit drinking den housed in a three-story shophouse. A long marble bar and gleaming, ceiling-high shelves displaying a formidable liquor collection make this one of the sexiest speakeasies in town, while the craft cocktails by legendary local mixologists Suwincha Chacha Singsuwan and Naphat Yod Natchachon mean the narrow space is packed on weekends. 125 Sukhumvit Soi 55, +66 98 969 1335, on Facebook

Drop whatever preconceptions the term lifestyle mall calls to mind, because this industrial complex buried in Thonglor houses some of Bangkoks best bars and eateries. A crawl should start with a craft brew and greasy grub like laab fries at Beer Belly, then go for something stiffer at U.N.C.L.E, a leather-upholstered lounge with tipples such at the Honey Keep It Cool, with cachaa, lemon-infused green tea, Fernet-Branca, honey and Tullamore Dew whiskey. Touch Hombre has the best selection of mezcals and tequilas in the city, not to mention authentic bites like elotes callejeros (grilled corn with cotija cheese, chipotle-spiked mayonnaise and lime). Finish your night with a trip to Beam, a warehouse-style club where techno pounds till late. 72 Soi Sukhumvit 55, on Facebook

A G&T here might well carry a lingering, savoury aroma of peppered pork jerky or Thai tea. Housed in an 80-year-old shophouse, cluttered with vintage Thai furniture, this watering hole has earned a cult following for its gin infusions made from whatever the owners find from neighbouring Chinatown stores. On a weekend, be prepared to queue for one of the coveted 16 seats. 76 Soi Nana, Charoen Krung road, on Facebook

An opium-den fever dream of paper lanterns, Chinese dragons and slinky qipao-clad ladies, Sing Sing Theaters retro-glam, over-the-top vision of 1930s Shanghai packs the dance floor on weekends. Sukhumvit Soi 45, on Facebook

OK, so its expensive, but for a luxe stay, this is the place. Six years in the making, this Bill Bensley-designed passion project of local celebrity, actor and former indie rocker Krissada Sukosol Clapp is chockablock with antiques. The resulting property is remarkably atmospheric, especially on the serene verandah overlooking the Chao Phraya. Guests can learn to fight like a champion with an Olympic Muay Thai trainer or even pick up a sacred sak yant tattoo from Ajarn Boo, a master of this ancient art. Doubles from 295 room only, thesiamhotel.com

A night at this colonial mansion might evoke memories of a stay at an eccentric uncles, if said uncle were the swashbuckling, well-travelled type and a bit of a hoarder. The place is crammed with curios, ranging from the intriguing (retro typewriters) to the downright kooky (cheetah skulls). Its got character to burn, not to mention a rooftop pool, a restaurant serving Isaan and Lao cuisine, and prime location just off of Sukhumvit Road. Doubles from 93 B&B, cabochonhotel.com

Signs of this riverside boutiques previous existence as a coconut sugar factory are everywhere, from the original storage tins in the walls to the oversized wheels of jaggery that serve as tables in the restaurant. Each of the rooms is named and colour-coded to different times of day, starting with 7:00 AM in early-morning hues and ending with the crepuscular-tinted 5:00 PM. If the budget allows, spring for one of the later suites, which feature lovely views of Wat Arun (Temple of the Dawn) at sunset. Doubles from 80 room only, innaday.com,

With floor-to-ceiling windows in its 25 rooms and a lively rooftop restaurant with river views, the new Riva Arun makes for a great spot to soak in the scenery. Doubles from 72 room only, snhotels.com

Travellers neednt spend a fortune to sleep comfortably in this town, thanks to a spate of design-forward hostels opening in trendy neighbourhoods. Decked out in warm wood tones and sporting a craft beer bar, co-working space and third-wave coffee shop, ONEDAY (dorms from 9) is as hip as they come. In Ari, a lively residential area with tons of street food, The Yard Hostel (dorms from 13), made of upcycled shipping containers, quickly established itself as a neighbourhood haunt, as well as a social stop for wayfarers. Considerate extras bicycles for rent, two-month luggage storage, barbecue equipment for impromptu grill parties and a friendly staff add to the experience. In Chinatown, Loftell 22 (dorms from 7) offers comfy dorms and private rooms in two previously abandoned historic buildings in Talad Noi.

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Bangkok city guide: what to do plus the best hotels, restaurants and bars – The Guardian

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Researchers are first to see DNA ‘blink’ – Phys.org – Phys.Org

Posted: at 3:50 am

February 17, 2017 A powerful Northwestern University imaging tool is the first to measure the structure of isolated chromosomes without the use of fluorescent labels. Credit: Northwestern University

Many of the secrets of cancer and other diseases lie in the cell’s nucleus. But getting way down to that levelto see and investigate the important genetic material housed thererequires creative thinking and extremely powerful imaging techniques.

Vadim Backman and Hao Zhang, nanoscale imaging experts at Northwestern University, have developed a new imaging technology that is the first to see DNA “blink,” or fluoresce. The tool enables the researchers to study individual biomolecules as well as important global patterns of gene expression, which could yield insights into cancer.

Backman will discuss the tool and its applicationsincluding the new concept of macrogenomics, a technology that aims to regulate the global patterns of gene expression without gene editingFriday (Feb. 17) at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) annual meeting in Boston.

The talk, “Label-Free Super-Resolution Imaging of Chromatin Structure and Dynamics,” is part of the symposium “Optical Nanoscale Imaging: Unraveling the Chromatin Structure-Function Relationship,” which will be held from 1 to 2:30 p.m. Eastern Time Feb. 17 in Room 206, Hynes Convention Center.

The Northwestern tool features six-nanometer resolution and is the first to break the 10-nanometer resolution threshold. It can image DNA, chromatin and proteins in cells in their native states, without the need for labels.

For decades, textbooks have stated that macromolecules within living cells, such as DNA, RNA and proteins, do not have visible fluorescence on their own.

“People have overlooked this natural effect because they didn’t question conventional wisdom,” said Backman, the Walter Dill Professor of Biomedical Engineering in the McCormick School of Engineering. “With our super-resolution imaging, we found that DNA and other biomolecules do fluoresce, but only for a very short time. Then they rest for a very long time, in a ‘dark’ state. The natural fluorescence was beautiful to see.”

Backman, Zhang and collaborators now are using the label-free technique to study chromatinthe bundle of genetic material in the cell nucleusto see how it is organized. Zhang is an associate professor of biomedical engineering at McCormick.

“Insights into the workings of the chromatin folding code, which regulates patterns of gene expression, will help us better understand cancer and its ability to adapt to changing environments,” Backman said. “Cancer is not a single-gene disease.”

Current technology for imaging DNA and other genetic material relies on special fluorescent dyes to enhance contrast when macromolecules are imaged. These dyes may perturb cell function, and some eventually kill the cellsundesirable effects in scientific studies.

In contrast, the Northwestern technique, called spectroscopic intrinsic-contrast photon-localization optical nanoscopy (SICLON), allows researchers to study biomolecules in their natural environment, without the need for these fluorescent labels.

Backman, Zhang and Cheng Sun, an associate professor of mechanical engineering at McCormick, discovered that when illuminated with visible light, the biomolecules get excited and light up well enough to be imaged without fluorescent stains. When excited with the right wavelength, the biomolecules even light up better than they would with the best, most powerful fluorescent labels.

“Our technology will allow us and the broader research community to push the boundaries of nanoscopic imaging and molecular biology even further,” Backman said.

Explore further: Researchers discover that DNA naturally fluoresces

A Northwestern University team recently caught DNA doing something that has never been seen before: it blinked.

When scientists finished decoding the human genome in 2003, they thought the findings would help us better understand diseases, discover genetic mutations linked to cancer, and lead to the design of smarter medicine. Now …

In 2014, an international trio won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for developing super-resolution fluorescence microscopy, a technique that made it possible to study molecular processes in living cells.

Researchers at The University of Nottingham have developed a break-through technique that uses sound rather than light to see inside live cells, with potential application in stem-cell transplants and cancer diagnosis.

Imaging very small materials takes not only great skill on the part of the microscopist, but also great instruments and techniques. For a refined microscopic look at biological materials, the challenges include getting an …

A team led by a Northwestern University biomedical engineer has developed a new optical technique that holds promise for minimally invasive screening methods for the early diagnosis of cancer.

Hens that do not produce their own chicks have been developed for use as surrogates to lay eggs from rare breeds.

Many of the secrets of cancer and other diseases lie in the cell’s nucleus. But getting way down to that levelto see and investigate the important genetic material housed thererequires creative thinking and extremely …

Climate change from political and ecological standpoints is a constant in the media and with good reason, said a Texas A&M AgriLife Research scientist, but proof of its impact is sometimes found in unlikely places.

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New research involving Monash University biologists has debunked the view thatmalesjust pass on genetic materialand not much else to their offspring. Instead, it found a father’s diet can affect their son’s ability …

At what point on the journey along the branches of the evolutionary tree does a population become its own, unique species? And is a species still distinct, if it mates with a different, but closely related species? Evolutionary …

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First amendment receives more support – UConn Daily Campus

Posted: February 15, 2017 at 8:58 pm

The Knight Foundation, an organization that invests in journalism, the arts and technology, recently released a survey showing high school students support of the First Amendment is the highest it has been in a decade, according to a press release.

In a survey of almost 12,000 high school students and 726 teachers, 91 percent expressed their agreement that people should be allowed to express unpopular opinions, compared to 83 percent who took the survey in 2004, according to the press release.

Over half of students felt normal individuals should have the same publishing rights as professional journalists.

Students also felt that they should be able to document activities involving the police as long as they are not interfering, according to the release.

Both Connecticut high school and University of Connecticut students weighed in on the survey results, giving their opinions about freedom of speech.

Henry Ortiz, a sophomore at the CT River Academy in East Hartford, agreed that people should be allowed to express unpopular opinions.

I feel that people should be able to say what they want. Everyone is allowed to say how they feel, even when they are wrong, Ortiz said.

Second-semester psychology major Juwan Rosa had a similar response.

Everyone thinks in different ways. As a result, everyone has different opinions. Sometimes it is better if someone says an unpopular opinion because those around can understand why the opinion exists, Rosa said.

Both students said they felt freedom of speech was important, and without it, ideas would not be able to be shared.

In response to the survey question about documenting the police, both Rosa and Ortiz also agreed that people should be able to videotape police officers actions as long as they are not interfering.

Police officers are employees of the state, generally things involving state are public. Why shouldnt the way a cop treats an individual be as well? Rosa said.

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First amendment receives more support – UConn Daily Campus

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Brighton date for London’s futurist duo The Alpines – Chichester … – Chichester Observer

Posted: at 8:40 pm

10:05 Monday 13 February 2017

Londons futurist duo The Alpines Bob Matthews and Catherine Pockson describe their music as a meeting in the middle between them.

We have been together since 2010, says Catherine as they head out on a tour which takes them to The Prince Albert, Brighton on February 22. We actually met at a wedding of a mutual friend of ours. Bob was playing in the band at the wedding. He was part of an indie band before we became The Alpines. I was doing a lot of my own stuff at the time, solo stuff, and we wrote some stuff together. We got quite a lot of interest after one or two shows in London, and we got signed quite quickly after that. Its funny how it works out.

As for the name: One of the first trips we did was taking a road trip down to the Alps. We made a lot of CDs and mix tapes and put them in the car and discussed a lot of music and influences. It was quite a formative thing for us. And the Alps are just one of the most beautiful places. We wanted a good name, and Alpines are plants that grow on the higher reaches of mountains and are pretty hardy. We thought it would be a good name. We come from very different musical backgrounds. I come from a more soul, jazz, r n b upbringing, and Bob was more indie, electronic and rock. One of his favourite bands is The Beatles, so our music is like a merging of our quite different backgrounds. I would describe it as intimate and quite soulful, but with quite a wide soundscape. There is width to it. We wanted to make music that was emotional and honest.

Bob agrees: But what I think we both have in common is that we both love pop music and classic song-writing. Thats the foundation of everything we do, and the rest of it just comes through our influences. Mine are more ambient and avant-garde. Hers are more soul and the music of the 90s.

Another River, their second album, came out last October: It went well. We have got a few good reviews, and people felt there was a progression from the first album. We wanted to make sure that we kept moving forwards and did something that was different to the first one. Rather than forcing it, I think we just let it happen. It was more like the shackles coming off. This time we wanted to do the music that we wanted to do and not worry about what other people thought. I think that created its own progression, and we were also two to three years older.

Catherine agrees: Partly also it is confidence. And experience. If you let yourself worry too much about the charts and what is popular, you lose sight of what you are trying to do. I think it is important to remember what you are about. You have got to remember your purpose, and you have got create something new, to push the boundaries. We were really, really pleased with it. We wrote nearly a hundred songs for it. It went back and forth. There are ten on the album.

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Brighton date for London’s futurist duo The Alpines – Chichester … – Chichester Observer

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Latest Ascension Parish crime briefs – Donaldsonville Chief

Posted: at 12:27 am

Gonzales man pleads guilty to Illegal Narcotics Possession

On Feb. 6, Jamie Bourgeois of 41082 Busy Needles Road, Gonzales, age 46, pled guilty to Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substance. Bourgeois was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Charles Chuck Long, and presiding over this matter was the Honorable Judge Tess Stromberg. The guilty plea was the result of a plea agreement with prosecutors following a report of narcotics activity in the Gonzales area.

On Oct. 3, 2016, Ascension Parish Sheriffs Deputies were dispatched to a business on Airline Highway in Gonzales following a report of narcotics activity. An off-duty police officer advised dispatchers that he observed a male subject shooting heroin in the parking lot of a Gonzales convenience store. The off-duty officer observed the subject get into a vehicle with two other individuals and followed them as they traveled to another nearby business.

Upon arrival, sheriffs deputies were able to locate the vehicle in question and make contact with its occupants. Deputies were granted consent to search the vehicle by its registered owner. During the search, deputies located a pink plastic baggie containing heroin residue. When questioned, the owner of the vehicle told deputies that Bourgeois had just finished taking a hit of heroin.

The off-duty police officer identified Bourgeois as being the individual he saw ingesting the heroin. Bourgeois was arrested and transported to the Ascension Parish Detention Center where he was booked accordingly.

Upon entering a guilty plea to the above charge, as per the plea agreement with prosecutors, Judge Stromberg ordered that Bourgeois be committed to the Louisiana Department of Corrections for a period of three years with credit for time served.

South Carolina contractor arrested for fraud in connection with flood

Ascension Parish Sheriffs Office Major Kevin Hanna reports the arrest of 49-year-old Gregory Gager of Pratt St., Sharon, S. C. for residential contractor fraud and engaging in business of contracting without a license.

On Nov. 5, 2016, deputies received a complaint from a Prairieville homeowner who stated she hired Gager to repair her home after the August 2016 flood. The agreed contract was executed in September 2016 for repairs in the amount of $19,500. The victim paid Gager in three draws, between Sept. 12 and Oct. 3, totaling over $17,000 for repairs that was never completed.

In late October, Gager contacted the victim via text message telling her he needed additional money from her to complete the repairs. She responded that he had not yet completed the repairs of the $17,000 that she had already paid him.

At this point she never could re-establish contact with Gager. Estimates were then obtained from two independent contractors who determined that the amount of work that was actually completed by Gager, to date, totaled approximately $9,000 to $10,000.

After further investigation, it was learned that Gager is not licensed through the Louisiana State Licensing Board of Contractors, which contractors are required to register with the board in order to perform services in an amount between $7,000 and $75,000.

Gager was arrested and charged with residential contractor fraud and engaging in business of contracting without a license. He was booked into the Ascension Parish Jail.

Guilty Pleas

During the week of Feb. 6 to Feb. 10, the following defendants pled guilty to various charges and were sentenced in the 23rd Judicial District Court, parishes of Ascension, Assumption and St. James.

Ascension Parish

Jamie Bourgeois, 41082 Busy Needles Road, Gonzales, 46, pled guilty to Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substance and was sentenced to three years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served.

Renaldo Green, 1219 S. Sybil Ave., Gonzales, 35, pled guilty to Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substance, Driving Under Suspension, Failure to Stop at a Stop Sign, Careless Operation, and Resisting an Officer. On the charge of Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substance, the defendant was sentenced to five years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served. On the charges of Driving Under Suspension, Failure to Stop at a Stop Sign, Careless Operation, and Resisting an Officer, the defendant was sentenced to 30 days in the parish jail with credit for time served on each charge. All of the imposed sentences are to run concurrent with one another.

Wilbert Thomas, 5717 Comishi Drive, Baton Rouge, 35, pled guilty to Illegal Carrying of Weapons and Possession of a Schedule II Controlled Dangerous Substance. The defendant was sentenced to five years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served on each charge. The imposed sentences are to run concurrent with one another.

Tomeka Bingham, 6820 Cezanne Ave., Baton Rouge, 44, pled guilty to Obtaining Drugs by Fraudulent Means and was sentenced to three years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served. It was ordered that one year of the imposed sentence is to be served without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. Upon release, the defendant is to be placed on two years supervised probation.

Juan Acosta, 324 New River Road, Gonzales, 36, pled guilty to Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substance and was sentenced to two years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served.

Brock Doucet, 13860 Brittany Court, Denham Springs, 39, pled guilty to Possession of a Schedule II Controlled Dangerous Substance, Possession of Marijuana or Synthetic Cannabinoids, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. The defendant was sentenced to five years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served.

James Granger, 1128 E. Sybil St. Gonzales, 36, pled guilty to Possession of a Schedule II Controlled Dangerous Substance, Driving Under Suspension, No Insurance, and Switched License Plates. The defendant was sentenced to three years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served, to be suspended, and placed on three years supervised probation.

Charlotte Coppenbarger, 25175 Cherry Lane, Holden, 31, pled guilty to Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substance and was sentenced to four years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served, to be suspended, and placed on four years supervised probation.

The above cases were prosecuted by Assistant District Attorneys Charles Chuck Long and Lindsey Manda. Presiding over these matters was the Honorable Judge Tess Stromberg.

Assumption Parish

Troy Canselo, 1617 Pace Blvd., New Orleans, 44, pled guilty to Attempted Armed Robbery and was sentenced to 10 years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served. The imposed sentence is to be served without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

The above case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Thomas Daigle, and Presiding over this matter was the Honorable Judge Jessie LeBlanc.

St. James Parish

Walter Williams, 522 E Frisco Drive, Laplace, 44, pled guilty to Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle and was sentenced to five years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served, to be suspended, and placed on five years supervised probation.

The above case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Bruce Mohon, and presiding over this matter was the Honorable Judge Alvin Turner Jr.

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Editorial: Brown puts political correctness above jobs – Daily Astorian

Posted: February 13, 2017 at 9:27 am

In an astoundingly ignorant and heavy-handed display of putting urban political correctness ahead of rural jobs, Gov. Kate Brown last week dictated that the citizen members of the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission reverse their January decision that gave commercial fishermen a minimally fair share of the Columbia Rivers salmon allocation.

Addressing commissioners as if they are misbehaving children, Brown told Chairman Michael Finley the commission majoritys acknowledgment of reality is not acceptable and that I expect the commission to acquiesce to her interpretation of the facts by April 3.

The commission agreed at a meeting on Friday in Tigard to take up the issue in March.

Many of the most important facts are not in dispute: Former Gov. John Kitzhabers dictated abandonment of decades of carefully nuanced salmon policy has not worked. Kicking commercial fishermen off the Columbias main stem as of Dec. 31, 2016, as Kitzhabers plan called for, is manifestly unjust and will hurt the economy of Clatsop County and other fishing-dependent communities.

Fish and Wildlife Commission members are in an infinitely better position to judge the ineffectiveness of salmon policies than is the governor. They know that alternatives such as seine nets operated from boats and the shore have been a clear disappointment. Off-channel locations where nets might be deployed to catch only hatchery fish are in short supply. State legislators and agencies have failed to keep financial promises to fishing families.

The commissions former chairman was enthusiastic in applauding the January vote to back away from a rigid deadline to transition gillnets off the river. Salmon gillnets, in modern usage, are not the walls of death railed against by the governors urban friends, but are instead carefully crafted to catch a strictly limited number of hatchery salmon. Time, area and gear restrictions including live recovery boxes for any accidentally caught naturally spawning salmon limit impacts on wild fish.

In truth, the anti-gillnetting drive has never been about conservation, but about salving tender Portland sensitivities while delivering more salmon to recreational fishermen, especially those affiliated with the Northwest Sportfishing Industry Association, which owes its existence to fat-cat Texas oilmen.

Browns interference in this matter is a prime example of why some Democrats now struggle to connect with working people. Yes, all Oregonians want recreational fishing to prosper. But by rejecting any compromise on behalf of hardworking commercial fishermen, Brown places herself solidly against jobs for struggling rural voters. We all should remember that come Election Day.

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Editorial: Brown puts political correctness above jobs – Daily Astorian

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