The daily Astorian. (Astoria, Or.) 1961-current, January 22, 2018, Page 3A, Image 3

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Crab boats launch as season opens
The Daily Astorian
Crab boats and crab
pots hit the water early this
According to fishermen,
seafood processors and crab-
bers in Newport agreed to a
starting price of around $2.75
per pound. While fleets up
and down the Oregon Coast
have left the docks to set their
gear, there is no official word
yet on what prices they’ll
likely be receiving, said Hugh
Link, executive director of
the Oregon Dungeness Crab
The price reported in New-
port is down from the average
starting price of $2.89 that
crabbers saw last season, but
higher than what processors
had initially offered. Price
negotiations between pro-
cessors and crabbers stalled
last week, further delaying
the start of a season that had
already been delayed to allow
crabs to fill out with meat. The
commercial Dungeness sea-
son traditionally starts Dec.
they do not believe he was
using his position with the
school to gain access to the
SEASIDE — A Seaside victim in this case.
Davis is being held at
man was arrested Thurs-
day for allegedly molesting the Clatsop County Jail on
a child on several occasions. $500,000 bail. His arraign-
The allegations are based ment is scheduled for
later this month if
on several incidents
from 2007 to 2011
“If anyone does
when the child was
believe any similar
between the ages
incidents did occur
of 5- and 9-years-
based on his employ-
old. Seaside police
ment at the school,
arrested Keith Davis,
they are encouraged
46, who has been
charged with five Keith Davis to come forward,”
counts of first-degree
sexual abuse and five counts Attorney Dawn Buzzard said.
Those with further infor-
of first-degree sodomy.
Davis is a former custo- mation are advised to call
dian at Seaside Heights Ele- Seaside Police Detective Bill
mentary School. Police say Barnes at 503-738-6311.
The Daily Astorian
Colin Murphey/The Daily Astorian
The crab season has finally opened.
1 but is sometimes delayed
because of price negotiations
or when crabs do not have
enough meat. In recent years,
high levels of the marine toxin
domoic acid have also pushed
the opening back.
On social media, many
fishermen said they were dis-
appointed over the lower price,
with some writing that New-
port crabbers broke the strike
when they could have per-
haps held out for more money.
Other people posted prayers or
simply wrote, “Good luck” or
“Best of luck!” One woman
posted photos of boats heading
out of Coos Bay, bright lights
shining in the dark. “Stay
safe,” she wrote.
Limited impact on North Coast from shutdown
The Daily Astorian
The federal government
shutdown had limited impact
in Clatsop County.
The government shut down
at midnight Friday after Con-
gress and President Donald
Trump were unable to agree
on a short-term budget deal.
During shutdowns, some gov-
ernment employees are placed
on temporary unpaid leave. No
federal employees receive pay-
checks until Congress passes a
funding bill.
In Clatsop County, essen-
tial services like distributing
Social Security checks and
veteran’s benefits, Medicare
and Medicaid, the military and
the U.S. Postal Service con-
tinued. The National Oceanic
and Atmospheric Administra-
Former Seaside Heights
custodian charged with
child molestation
Brenna Visser/The Daily Astorian
A sign at Lewis and Clark National Historical Park warns
visitors of limited services available during the govern-
ment shutdown.
tion continued to issue weather
Local Coast Guard officials
did not specify how the shut-
down affected internal opera-
tions. Essential functions were
not impacted, however.
“It won’t stop us from
launching on a search-and-res-
cue mission or oil spill or some-
thing like that,” Petty Officer
1st Class Levi Read said.
The shutdown did affect
national parks and museums,
including Lewis and Clark
National Historical Park. Jon
Burpee, the park’s superinten-
dent, was the only employee
working as of Saturday. He
said about 15 park employees
were furloughed. No visitor
services, educational program-
ming, maintenance and janito-
rial work was available.
January is one of the slow-
est times of the year for the
park, Burpee said, so few
camping reservations were
disrupted. The shutdown can-
celed “Cocoa and Coho” on
Saturday, an event where peo-
ple plant and help rehabilitate
wetlands around the park for
salmon habitat, Burpee said.
Trails remained open.
“The goal is to keep as
much access as possible while
still protecting the sensitive cul-
tural and natural stuff,” he said.
Longtime patrons blast
Seaside pool renovation
The Daily Astorian
SEASIDE — After a
more than two-month clo-
sure, swimmers returned to
the Sunset Empire Park and
Recreation District pool in
mid-December to resume
classes, meets and swims.
The Broadway pool was
repainted and LED lighting
was installed. In the men’s
locker room, new show-
ers were installed, floors
were redone and walls were
But some longtime pool
users say the renovations have
diminished their experience.
“Swimming is my life,”
Seaside’s Marti Wajc said. “It’s
important to all the women
who swim. Learning to swim
saved my life. Being able to
swim is essential to me.”
Wajc, who has been
swimming at the pool for
15 years, complained of
“the filthy conditions” of the
women’s locker room.
“The shower in particular
— you could go in three days
later and see the same con-
ditioner and the hair on the
wall,” she said.
Flooring in the women’s
shower area is so slippery
that swimmers are at risk of
falls, she added.
John Huismann, a pool
user from Cannon Beach,
said he was disappointed
with changes in the men’s
locker room, which he said
put public safety at risk.
“We took a nice locker
room, everybody liked it, and
turned it into something that
was god awful,” Huismann
said at the park district’s
board meeting Tuesday.
Huismann said public
input had been limited during
the renovation process and
areas that used to be “bright
and light” were now dark and
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