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Graduate student Jewell Bohlinger studies human and cultural geography at the University of Oregon, and she’s currently researching prisons — from environmental impacts within prisons to whether prisons can be sustainable with high incarceration rates.

Bohlinger is one of more than 100 UO graduate students who will present their research projects Feb. 26 at the UO’s Ford Alumni Center for the UO Graduate Student Research Forum, organized by the UO Graduate School.

The occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge by anti-government activists was expensive on a number of levels, from law enforcement costs to loss of revenue stemming from the refuge. Also costly could be the Bundy’s and other occupiers’ legal fees and possible restitution, and there are questions about how the ranchers were able to afford to be be away from their jobs and ranches for more than a month from Jan. 2 to Feb. 11, when the last four militants surrendered.

• Tsunami Books reports its “Eat Local/ Shop Local” sandwich board sign in front of the store was stolen the night of Feb. 18, the same night the Domino’s Pizza opened next door at 2568 Willamette. Coincidence? A new sign will be up soon. Domino’s now has three stores in the Eugene area.

• The Coalition to Reduce Elementary Level Class Size is hosting an organizing meeting from 6:30 to 8 pm Thursday, Feb. 25, at Edison Elementary School, 1328 E. 22nd Ave. Oscar Loureiro, director of research and planning at 4J, and Anne Marie Levis, 4J school board member, will join the meeting for a question and answer session. Find the event on Facebook.

Oregon State University is hosting doctor, author and New Age spiritualist Deepak Chopra in collaboration with the I Am Genie Foundation at the LaSells Stewart Center across from Reser Stadium in Corvallis Feb. 23. 

“I’ll be speaking about the topics from my last two books, which were called Super Genes and Super Brain,” Chopra tells EW from the Chopra Center for Well Being in Carlsbad, California. 

Frustration is growing with the way Lane County Animal Services is handling horse neglect cases, says horse rescuer Darla Clark of Strawberry Mountain Rescue and Rehabilitation Center. 

Although Clark is in Douglas County, she gets frequent calls from concerned Lane County residents about horse neglect situations here, including a case in which horses were wandering on a roadway near a school in Cottage Grove and another situation in Elmira in which a herd of horses were alleged to be starving. Many of the Elmira horses were sold at the Eugene Livestock Auction on Feb. 14.

Kesey Square was originally intended to be a dedicated public space when a building was removed from the site in 1970. According to a Feb. 13 article in the Register-Guard, the deed to the square has surfaced and it says the area, also known as Broadway Plaza, is supposed to stay public permanently. 

The R-G reported that it found a copy of the 1971 deed, committing the city-owned land parcel at Broadway and Willamette to be “forever dedicated to the use of the public.”

A Victorian-style apothecary with steampunk-inspired, post-Industrial flair will soon join the businesses in the Farmers’ Union Marketplace at Fifth Avenue and Olive Street in downtown Eugene.

Mountain Rose Herbs, national purveyor of tea, spices and other herbal offerings, moved to Eugene in 2010, but the company has never before operated a formal storefront.

Hey, hold on just a second before you fire up that weed — it could be toxic as hell.

A shiver ran through Eugene’s marijuana community Feb. 5 when the Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) ordered the stop-sale of Guardian, a popular pesticide, after it was discovered the product contained abamectin, an insecticide that is highly toxic to bees and marine life, and which in high doses may lower sperm count in men.

• Oregon industrial hemp growers will likely be happy with amendments to House Bill 4060 which passed out of the House Committee on Agriculture and Natural Resources Feb. 11, has had its third reading and is up for a vote in the full House soon. The new hemp rules are significantly relaxed over existing rules and an earlier version of the bill. Growing or handling hemp will still require an annual state license, record-keeping and random testing for maximum THC levels.

• The League of Women Voters of Lane County meets at 11 am Thursday, Feb. 18, at the Valley River Inn. Joy Marshall, director of Stand for Children for Lane County, will talk on “How Can We Improve Oregon’s High School Graduation Rate?” Open to the public and free. Call 343-7917.

• The city of Eugene Public Art Committee will meet at 3:30 pm Thursday, Feb. 18, at the Eugene Public Library, Singer Conference Room. Call 682-2057 or email isaac.r.marquez@ci.eugene.or.us.

In Afghanistan

• 2,349 U.S. troops killed (2,349 last month)

• 20,071 U.S. troops wounded in action (20,071)

• 1,629 U.S. contractors killed (1,629)

• 16,179 civilians killed (updates NA)

• $728.2 billion cost of war ($725.3 billion)

• $291.3 million cost to Eugene taxpayers ($290.1 million)

 

Against ISIS

• $8.3 billion cost of military action ($7.9 billion last month)

• $3.3 million cost to Eugene taxpayers ($3.1 million)

Only a year ago, Kelly Middle School science teacher Dustin Dawson expressed his concern at a school board meeting that Eugene School District 4J wasn’t moving fast enough to adopt new science curriculum. At the time, some of 4J’s schools were using 20-year-old textbooks with outdated information written before Pluto was declassified as a planet and before the human genome was sequenced. Dawson was supplementing his classes with his own material.

Eugene Area Chamber of Commerce President Dave Hauser recently weighed in on the future of Kesey Square in his weekly email Feb. 5, “The Chamber Rundown,” to Chamber members.

On Nov. 17, the Chamber voted to endorse the controversial 2E Broadway proposal — the proposal to buy Kesey Square and put an apartment building on it — when most citizens were still wrapping their heads around the fact that Kesey Square was even up for sale.

• Weyerhaeuser Company, 744-4600, plans to aerial and ground spray 416.8 acres in the greater Lorane area near Tucker, Crow, Kelly, Farman, Redford and Shaw Creeks with 2,4-D, atrazine, clopyralid, glyphosate, hexazinone, sulfometuron methyl, Crosshair, Foam Buster and/or Grounded. See ODF notification 2016-781-01556, call Brian Peterson at 935-2283 with questions. 

The May election might be a primary, but how a local candidate does in that election — only a couple short months away — can determine the final winner for the position.

In the nonpartisan elections for both the Eugene City Council and the Lane County Board of Commissioners, if a candidate gets more than 50 percent of the votes in the primary, then that person’s name is the only one that shows up on the November ballot. 

On Jan. 30, several members of a group called Save TV Butte held signs at the gates of King Estate Winery reading  “Wines not Mines” and “WTF? King Estate.” 

• Another report on Oregon’s fast-growing economy has come out of the Oregon Center for Public Policy (OCPP) and the numbers look great, except for the disparity. Sound familiar? Oregon’s economy is a reflection of the national economy, and the unequal sharing of prosperity is a hot topic in the presidential primary debates. Oregon’s steady economic growth since 1997 has outpaced the national economy significantly. Only North Dakota with its oil boom has exceeded Oregon between 2001 and 2014.

• The Eugene Police Commission meets at 5:30 pm Thursday, Feb. 11, at EPD Headquarters, 300 Country Club Road. Public comments top the meeting agenda. Contact person is Carter Hawley, 682-5852.

Eugene city councilors are feeling a little out of the loop when it comes to the construction of the new City Hall and their future offices there. Or lack of offices, as the case may be. Recently more than half the City Council questioned City Manager Jon Ruiz on the latest developments with the public building under construction that they were not aware of.

On Feb. 12 the Eugene tech community plans to address the topic of downtown livability in Eugene with a giant computer programming event called a hackathon. The tech frenzy starts Friday at the Downtown Athletic Club, where Technology Association of Oregon (TAO) will host Hack for a Cause.  

Joshua Purvis, the events coordinator for TAO, explains that local members of the tech community will work in teams to develop and produce ideas and concepts concerning downtown livability in Eugene “with a vision for implementation.”

• M Three Timber Company, 767-3785, plans to aerial and ground spray 66 acres near Muslin Creek with 2,4-D, atrazine, hexazinone, sulfometuron methyl, clopyralid and/or Induce. See ODF notification 2016-781-01311, call Brian Peterson at 953-2283 with questions. 

Marijuana: controlled substance or religious sacrament? 

In December 2015, the Portland branch of the United States Postal Service (USPS) seized a 5-ounce package of marijuana mailed from Eugene by Joy Graves — the leader of the Cottage Grove branch of Oklevueha Native American Church (ONAC) — who says it was intended to help an ailing ONAC member in Ohio.

• Last fall’s Community Apple Drive has culminated in the first cider exclusively harvested by the community, and the cider will be released on tap and in bottles beginning this week by WildCraft Cider Works. Apples, pears and plums from backyards, alleys and street sides were collected from August through November to produce 575 gallons of a 28-varietal cider. A percentage of sales will go to local nonprofit conservation groups. A celebration will be held starting at 8 pm Friday, Feb. 5, at Hi-Fi Music Hall, 44 E. 7th Ave.