Tribal leaders ask for cessation of fossil fuels, Upstream proposes sugary drink tax.
Tribes weigh in on oil trains. The political and economic impacts of last week’s oil train derailment continue to reverberate around the state. Northwest tribal leaders are calling for a halt to all fossil fuel transportation. OPB has more.
Healthy tax. Portland has an arts tax and gas tax; now Multnomah County activists want another supplementary tax: a penny per ounce on sugary drinks to fund health programs and eduction. In theory, the tax would raise $22 million annually for the county, but the effort has already failed once in 2012. Upstream Public Health is leading the charge for a November initiative, Willamette Week reports.
Owyhee protections. While a national monument for the Owyhee Canyonlands is still under consideration, U.S. Send. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley intend to protect the 2.5 million acres via legislative action. The Oregon senators introduced a bill that would prevent “mineral withdrawal.” The bill would also expand community programs to “grow their traditional economies.” Read more from the Bend Bulletin.
School testing. Since it was revealed that Portland schools had elevated levels of lead in the water — while administrators did nothing for two months — other school districts statewide have started testing lead levels and found evidence of contamination. The Legislature announced it intends to fund lead testing statewide. The Statesman Journal has more.
Exposed workers. The high concentrations of hazardous chemicals that employees can be exposed to in the workplace is often overlooked. Research Editor Kim Moore has more.
Expedia muscles in. The travel behemoth hosted an unannounced town hall on short term rentals at the Hood River Elks Club Wednesday. Editor Linda Baker has more on the story.
Havana nights. U.S. residents will soon be able to fly to Cuba as six airlines have been approved as carriers. Flights could begin as early as the fall. Until now, the only flights between Cuba and the U.S. have been chartered. Read more from Reuters.
Bankrupt media. Gawker has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, after being socked with a $140 million judgement this year. Peter Thiel, Paypal co-founder, secretly funded a privacy lawsuit against Gawker after the site published a Hulk Hogan sex tape. Gawker will likely seek a new owner for the company. Recode has more.