07-03-2020  5:19 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Police Union Contract Extended, Bargaining to Continue

Negotiations will resume in January 2021.

Inslee Heckled Off Stage During Tri-Cities Appearance

Speaking outdoors in Eastern Washington, the governor was repeatedly interrupted by hecklers as he urged residents to wear masks to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Portland Police Declare Riot, Use Tear Gas

Several arrests were made as protests continued into early Wednesday morning.

Oregon Legislature Passes Police Reform Package Amid ‘Rushed’ Criticism

Six new bills declare an emergency in police protocol and are immediately effective. 

NEWS BRIEFS

Trump Blows His Twitter Dog Whistle on America’s Fair Housing Policies in the Suburbs

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New Director Takes Helm at Oregon Black Pioneers

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Oregon thought it had controlled COVID-19, then came surge

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Surge in state COVID-19 cases driven by eastern Washington

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Iowa defensive back Jack Koerner hurt in jet ski accident

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Missouri football program pushes again for racial justice

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Ryan Walters had just arrived at the University of Missouri to coach safeties for the football program when a series of protests related to racial injustice led to the resignations of the system president and the chancellor of its flagship campus.The student-led movement...

OPINION

Editorial From the Publisher: Vote as Your Life Depends on It

The Republican-controlled Senate won’t pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, no matter how hard Oregon’s senators and others work to push for change. ...

Banana Republic or Constitutional Democracy? The US Military May Decide

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To Save Black Lives, and the Soul of Our Nation, Congress Must Act Boldly

For too long, Black people in America have been burdened with the unjust responsibility of keeping ourselves safe from police. ...

Racial Inequalities - Black America Has Solutions; White America Won't Approve Them

The problem is we have to secure approval of the solutions from the people who deny the problem's existence while reaping the benefits from it. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Religious leaders to invoke Frederick Douglass on July 4th

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Paint schemes go political as NASCAR season heats up

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Redskins to have 'thorough review' of name amid race debate

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Washington Redskins began a “thorough review” of their name Friday, a significant step toward moving on from what experts and advocates call a “dictionary-defined racial slur.”Even though owner Dan Snyder had shown no willingness to change...

ENTERTAINMENT

Hugh Downs, genial presence on TV news and game shows, dies

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Union tells actors not to work on pandemic film 'Songbird'

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The union that represents film actors told its members Thursday not to work on the upcoming pandemic thriller “Songbird,” saying the filmmakers have not been up-front about safety measures and had not signed the proper agreements for the movie that is among...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Alabama health officials can't verify 'COVID party' reports

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Reps: Singers Kacey Musgraves, Ruston Kelly file for divorce

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Cop who stopped Elijah McClain fired over response to photos

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US victims of FARC rebels win claim to Venezuelan's fortune

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French government ministers investigated over virus crisis

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Russian Orthodox Church defrocks coronavirus-denying monk

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McMenamins
Allen G. Breed AP National Writer

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- The federal government is spending $4 million to help hook up farmers and low-income customers.

Currently, fewer than a quarter of the nation's roughly 7,100 farmers markets are set up to use the Electronic Benefit Transfer system, or food stamps. But Kathleen Merrigan, deputy secretary of agriculture, said she hopes these grants will bring another 4,000 of those outlets on line with the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

"SNAP participation at farmers' markets helps provide fresh fruit and vegetables to families and expands the customer base for local farmers - a win-win for agriculture and local communities," she said in a statement.

The money is to equip these locations with wireless "point of sale" equipment to be used with the food program's debit cards. Grants range from $5,404 for Delaware, which has 11 markets, to $426,945 for California, with 687.

Kevin Concannon, the undersecretary for food, nutrition and consumer services, was touring sites around the country this week. On Tuesday, he stopped at the State Farmers Market in Raleigh, N.C.

"We're on a mission to help Americans eat better," Concannon said after sampling a vendor's blueberries. "And what better place than to provide access, better access to folks for farmers markets. And in particular for low-income people."

North Carolina will receive $109,631.

The Raleigh market has already funded its own wireless system. Still, only four vendors there accept the EBT, though three more are setting up to do so, said Ronnie Best, the market's manager.

"We've been doing it three months and ... we don't even average fifteen sales a week on it right now," said Helen Wise, owner of Wise Farms in nearby Mount Olive.

Concannon acknowledged that many of these markets are off the beaten path and can be hard - and expensive - for low-income people to access. But he said many are within easy reach of the estimate 46 million Americans who used food stamps.

"But in general, I've found that ... once you provide access to low-income folks, they'll come back," he said. "They can price like the rest of us. ... It's one more step in trying to promote healthier eating for the country."

Merrigan said SNAP expenditures at farmers markets have risen by 400 percent since 2008.

Betty Tart of Tart Farms said she, too, sees few food stamp customers at her stand. But she said those who do come by are delighted she can accommodate them.

"It makes me feel good," she said as a large American flag waved overhead. "Because, I have family that has been in that situation. I haven't, but I'm not too far gone. I could be one day."

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