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About East Oregonian : E.O. (Pendleton, OR) 1888-current | View Entire Issue (July 6, 2019)
TO LOCAL SCHOOLS
SHRINE GAME HAS
FOR PATTON WRIGHT
HERMISTON COUPLE ENJOYS LIFE,
WORK IN MEACHAM | LIFESTYLES, C1
143rd Year, No. 187
JULY 6-7, 2019
WINNER OF THE 2018 ONPA GENERAL EXCELLENCE AWARD
By JADE MCDOWELL
Stop B2H Coalition
remains charged up
to defeat massive
power line project
By PHIL WRIGHT
Jim and Fuji Kreider of La
Grande have the same take.
They serve on the Stop B2H
Coalition’s board of directors.
They left their La Grande home
and careers to help rebuild com-
munities in countries, such as
Kosovo, and returned after eight
Staﬀ photo by Ben Lonergan
Members of the group Stop B2H look out over a portion of land near Morgan Lake in La Grande where
the proposed line would travel. In addition to the line itself, the group has concerns about the de-
struction of land for the creation of access roads and Idaho Power’s ability to control weed growth
following the clear cut.
For a video of the Stop B2H
Coalition, log on to eastore-
See B2H, Page A10
Col u m bia
Area in detail
years to ﬁ nd their own commu-
nity in conﬂ ict because of the
power line project.
“What’s this company doing
destroying our community, our
cohesion?” she said.
The Kreiders took note,
attended meetings and saw oth-
ers speaking against the line.
“The longer it was going on,
the more people were concerned
about it,” Fuji Kreider said.
They and others joined forces
in 2015 to launch Stop B2H.
The group became a nonproﬁ t
in 2017, and that fall received
its ﬁ rst grant to support the
ﬁ ght. The Oregon-Califor-
nia Trails Association Klamath
A GRANDE — JoAnn
Marlette has been work-
ing to stop Idaho Pow-
er’s proposed power line
through Eastern Oregon
for so long, her cam-
paign wardrobe contains not one
but two T-shirt designs.
Marlette marched to a closet
in her downtown Baker City
apartment and returned clutch-
ing a pair of shirts. A gray gar-
ment bears the motto “Move
The second, and newer,
shirt, in a much more conspic-
uous yellow with black lettering
and graphics, is the work of the
grassroots, nonproﬁ t group Stop
B2H Coalition based in Union
County, Baker County’s neigh-
bor to the north.
The moniker refers to
500-kilovolt, 300-mile trans-
mission line Idaho Power, the
utility, proposed in 2007. In the
dozen years since, Marlette,
76, and the man sitting beside
her, Whit Deschner, 65, also
of Baker City, attended many
meetings and pored over thou-
sands of pages of documents
related to the project. They don’t
want the line.
“I just think it’s an erosion
of our community standards,”
Deschner said. “We have it
made here now.”
The Stop B2H Coalition is
committed to preventing Idaho
Power from running a 300-mile
high-voltage power line from
Boardman, Ore., to the Hemingway
substation about 50 miles southwest
of Boise. Coalition members contend
the line would disrupt elk habitat,
blight scenic views and threaten
sections of the Old Oregon Trail.
UMATILLA COUNTY — An
interest in Columbia River water
that could potentially supply the
former Umatilla Chemical Depot is
changing hands from the Northeast
Oregon Water Association to Uma-
“This is one of those projects
that will be able to sustain eco-
nomic development in Umatilla
County for years to come,” com-
missioner John Shafer said.
Commissioners voted Wednes-
day to approve an exclusive option
agreement with NOWA in prepa-
ration for acquiring interest in the
rights to pump up to 45 cubic feet
per second out of the river through
a pump station located there. The
water could be used to serve poten-
tial economic development on the
depot and to recharge the aquifer
located there, giving farmers greater
access to water for irrigation.
The project has about $835,000
plus interest left to be paid off,
which the county will purchase.
Shafer said the county will imme-
diately provide NOWA with the
money for a $25,000 interest pay-
ment due July 7.
Shafer said NOWA founder JR
Cook had discussed with him that
the organization needed someone
to take over the ﬁ nancial obligation
for the water interest but had not
had any takers. Such an opportu-
nity to draw water from the Colum-
bia River is extremely difﬁ cult to
obtain from the federal government.
“This one’s get all the fed-
eral permits done and it’s ready to
go, it’s just capped off waiting for
development,” Shafer said.
During Wednesday’s meeting,
Cook called the interest a “very
valuable asset to the region.” The
water could be used by companies
looking to build on the depot land
and to recharge the large aquifer
that runs under the depot.
“This project has the very real
opportunity to take wintertime
Columbia River water and recharge
that aquifer that is actually in a
critical groundwater area, that has
been depleted to the point that there
is a ton of storage because we’ve
pumped all the water out of it,”
Source: Bureau of Land Management
Alan Kenaga/EO Media Group
See Water, Page A9
Boquist derides session-ending politics, explains his threat to police
By AUBREY WIEBER
Oregon Capital Bureau
SALEM — Over the past
two years, a Republican leg-
islator once an ally of Demo-
crats has become a one-man
force waging war against his
colleagues to the left.
The scrutiny given to Sen.
Brian Boquist, R-Dallas,
intensiﬁ ed to unprecedented
levels in June when in one
day he made two comments
that literally brought national
media to his door.
His comments were trig-
gered by Gov. Kate Brown’s
avowal to send the Oregon
State Police after Republican
senators who left the Capitol
in political protest.
Senate President Peter
Courtney, D-Salem, and
Boquist used to be friends,
though a June 19 ﬂ oor session
showed clearly how far that
relationship has fallen.
“If you send the state
police to get me, hell’s com-
ing to visit you personally,”
He fueled attention when
a Portland television reporter
recorded him saying if state
police come looking for him,
they’d better “send bachelors
and come heavily armed.”
The Senate Special Com-
mittee on Conduct has sched-
uled a hearing for Monday,
July 8, to consider Boquist’s
conduct — the ﬁ rst step in
possible discipline against
Boquist, who has been in
ofﬁ ce since 2005.
For the ﬁ rst time in detail,
Boquist has explained his
actions and his claims that
the Senate skipped manda-
tory steps in its disciplinary
process. He made the remarks
in an interview on Wednes-
day with Salem Reporter. The
transcript of that interview
has been edited for brevity.
What is the origin of that
phrase, “send bachelors and
See Boquist, Page A9
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