The Baker County press. volume (Baker City, Ore.) 2014-current, January 05, 2018, Image 1

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    LOCAL: Eastern Oregon Regional Theater
celebrates birthday. PAGE 3
The
BUSINESS: Sumpter’s newest vacation rental
opens. PAGE 3
Baker County Press
TheBakerCountyPress.com
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January 5 & 12, 2018 • Volume 5, Issues 1-2
Employees head into
new year after layoffs
• AFTER LONG
FIGHT, CHAVES
LOSES CONTRACT
BY TODD ARRIOLA
Todd@TheBakerCountyPress.com
Richard Chaves, of
Chaves Consulting in
Baker City, which oper-
ates a call center in the
Old Post Offi ce Square
building, summed up the
State’s decision this year to
decline to extend contracts
with Chaves, resulting in
the loss of jobs and a sig-
nifi cant local economic hit:
“I think that the sad reality
is that, at this point, the
decision was made in order
to—I don’t know how to
say this, except to say it—
keep the unions happy.”
Chaves Consulting,
which has provided ser-
vices for the Department
of Human Services (DHS)
and the Oregon Health
Authority (OHA) for the
last ten years, had secured
a one-year contract with
the State to provide ser-
vices related to the Oregon
Health Plan (OHP), with
an option of four more,
one-year extensions, for a
total of fi ve years.
With 63 employees
working in the call center
at the time, the State
declined to extend the
contract last year, eliminat-
ing 54 jobs.
Chaves then secured a
temporary contract, and
a 90-day extension, with
an option to potentially
extend that contract for up
to fi ve years.
However, at the end of
the 90-day extension, the
contract was declined,
costing around 30 local
jobs near the end of 2017.
Todd Arriola / The Baker County Press
Richard Chaves talks about his call center and the
recent employee layoff.
SEE CHAVES
PAGE 8
OSP vehicles get new look
Bentz
sworn in to
Senate seat
BY KERRY McQUISTEN
News@TheBakerCountyPress.com
State Representative Cliff
Bentz from Ontario was
appointed to fi ll the vacated
state senate position previ-
ously fi lled by Ted Ferrioli
of John Day.
Bentz was one of three
nominees set forth by the
Precinct Committee People
in Senate District 30 after
Submitted Photo.
Ferrioli’s resignation.
On January 4, County
Commissioners gathered in Sen. Cliff Bentz.
John Day to complete the
next step in the process,
which was to vote for their choice of those three candi-
dates.
SEE SENATE PAGE 9
Photo courtesy of OSP.
Oregon State Police unveiled their new patrol vehicle design at the end of last year.
• SILVER TO REPLACE FAMILIAR NAVY,
BADGES ALSO GET OVERHAUL
• SIGN CODE CHANGES MAY STILL BE
LOOMING ISSUE
BY SAMANTHA O’CONNER
Samantha@TheBakerCountyPress.com
Bringing in the New Year, Oregon State Police (OSP)
Offi cers will have new vehicle colors and badges. The
new OSP vehicles were introduced via their Facebook
page on December 22nd. The new design was chosen by
OSP staff.
The badges on the cars is of their new OSP Logo
promoting their fi ve values; honor, loyalty, dedication,
compassion, and integrity.
According to Sgt. Kyle Hove of OSP La Grande, the
new cars will save the state money as the silver color is
cheaper to have on the cars and to repair after damages.
They also believe the new silver will be easier for people
to see at night and to recognize the OSP vehicles in an
emergency situation.
The new black badges on the sides will not fade as
much as the previous yellow refl ectors did. The previous
blue was a special color that cost $430 per vehicle and it
was a diffi cult shade to match.
Sgt. Hove explained that the new badge allows offi cers
to present their logo, their standards, and what they rep-
resent for the public to see. They have not had their logo
presented to the public before.
According to their Facebook page, the fi rst new patrol
Friday
Mostly cloudy and seasonable. Highs near 40.
Friday Night: Clearing then patchy fog. Lows in
the mid 20s.
Saturday
Mostly sunny and seasonable. Highs in the
upper 30s. Saturday Night: Patchy fog. Lows in
the mid 20s.
Sunday
Mostly sunny and seasonable. Highs in the
upper 30s. Sunday Night: Patchy fog. Lows in
the mid 20s.
City approves
pay increases
GINA K. SWARTZ
Gina@TheBakerCountyPress.com
Photo courtesy of OSP.
The familiar OSP paint jobs will be a thing of the
past.
car was assigned to Sr. Trooper Reel, who has been with
OSP for over 13 years and is currently assigned to the
Government Camp Worksite.
He has spent time in Fish & Wildlife, Honor Guard,
Defensive Tactics Instructor, as a Field Training Offi cer
and as a Background Investigator.
Their Facebook page also stated the fi rst Fish &
Wildlife Truck was assigned to Sr. Trooper Andrews, who
has been with OSP for over eight years and is currently
assigned to the Albany Area Command.
Sr. Trooper Andrews has spent time as a Patrol Tactics
and Defensive Tactics Instructors, instructs at the Jet and
Drift Boat Schools, as a Field Training Offi cer, and a
member of the Marijuana Eradication team.
The Fire, Weather & Avalanche Center forecast:
Our forecast made possible by
this generous sponsor:
Offi cial weather provider for
The Baker County Press.
The fi rst City Council meeting of 2018 was called to
order by Mayor Mike Downing at 7:00 p.m. on Tues-
day Evening. The Pledge of Allegiance and Invocation
were given By Councilor Thomas. Julie Smith Human
Resource Manager and City Recorder called roll. All
Councilors were present. Mayor Downing focused next
on the consent agenda which consisted of minutes from
the December 12, 2017 work session and minutes from
the December 12, 2017 regular Council meeting.
Councilor Joseph moved to approve the consent agenda
without additions or corrections with a second to the
motion made by Councilor Nilsson. A unanimous vote
was cast. Mayor Downing called for Citizen Participation
for anything that was not on the evenings agenda. Seeing
none he moved forward.
SEE CITY COUNCIL PAGE 9
ALSO IN THIS ISSUE
Sumpter talks about rates
Man menaces wife with hammer
Durkee’s community program
County Commissioners session
BHS art shown at Crossroads
Deputies round up chickens
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