PREPARE FOR THE POLAR PLUNGE 2A Enterprise, Oregon Wallowa.com 134th Year, No. 36 Wednesday, December 26, 2018 $1 Governor’s budget directs $247M to rural projects Wallowa Dam gets $16 million earmark By CLAIRE WITHYCOMBE Capital Bureau SALEM — On the campaign trail, Gov. Kate Brown was eager to tell voters she would represent all regions of the state. “I’m the only candidate in this race with a track record of bring- ing Republicans and Democrats together, urban and rural Orego- nians together, to tackle the prob- lems facing Oregon,” Brown said during one debate. A month after her reelection, she is following through on that claim. Brown’s proposed bud- get, released last week, includes more than $247 million for rural infrastructure projects and other increased spending to beneﬁ t rural residents. “I also believe that the work we are doing to continue to grow the economy by investing in infrastruc- ture, housing, broadband, water and of course, career and techni- cal education will beneﬁ t commu- nities large and small across Ore- gon,” Brown told reporters as she released her budget proposal. There’s enthusiasm from observers about Brown’s spending plans for rural Oregon, from dams to housing to high-speed internet. But some advocates and law- makers worry about other parts of her budget that cut ﬁ re protection on forestland, hold steady money for community colleges and increase taxes by $2 billion. Rural areas of the state face unique challenges. Despite the state’s robust overall economic growth, rural Oregon has yet to fully bounce back from the Great Recession. Rural unemployment has been declining since its peak in 2009, and the state’s rural economy is less diverse, making it more vulnerable to shocks. And the populace and Chieftain ﬁ le photo See Budget, Page A9 The lakeside face of the badly aging Wallowa Lake Dam. Farm groups express relief as Trump signs farm bill WILD HORSES, WILD By CAROL RYAN DUMAS Capital Press CANYONS Kathleen Ellyn/Chieftain Dawn Medley-Fowler with her mustang mare “Smokin’ Ghost.” Medley-Fowler thinks she may have picked just the right kind of horse for the rugged Imnaha country and is enjoying training mustangs to prepare them for adoption. New Imnaha residents train mustangs By Kathleen Ellyn Wallowa County Chieftain D awn Medley Fowler and hus- band Ed Medley have long dreamed of working cattle in the rugged Imnaha country. They’ve got a start on that dream. The couple bought the Jim Fields place about ﬁ ve miles down the Lower Imnaha Road. And Dawn has the right kind of horse for the Imnaha Canyon. She’s a mustang trainer with the federal Trainer Incentive Program, which means she gets paid to break mustangs brought in from Bureau of Land Management herds across the west. Her horses have so far come from Beatys Butte near Lakeview, Cold Springs near Harper, and Black Mountain in Owyhee County, Idaho. TIP trainers only have to put 10 days on a horse before the animal is safe enough to be adopted. During those 10 days, a trainer must teach speciﬁ c skills. It’s a high expectation list, given that some of the horses are completely wild and adult. If a trainer can get a younger horse, training not as hard as one might expect — though the trainer has to be a pretty good hand to meet the requirements. Trainers don’t have to have gone through a speciﬁ c program, but must have letters of recommendation, and must use natural horsemanship meth- ods. Dawn follows the Parelli method. Her ﬁ rst big success came when she took her young mare, “Smokin’ Ghost” to the Teens of Oregon Mus- tang Challenge in 2017. During that show and sales event, all the horses in the 100-days-of training competi- tion are able to show off their train- ing in trail, condition and handling, and maneuvers classes. The show in Albany also included a freestyle rid- ing exposition, Dawn said. See Mustangs, Page A8 The signing of a new farm bill by Presi- dent Trump on Thursday delivers just what farmers and ranchers were wishing for this Christmas season. Farm groups were quick to register their appreciation and relief in press statements thanking Trump, his administration and Congress for securing a bill before the clock ran out on 2018. The American Farm Bureau Federation said enactment means risk-management tools, foreign market development and envi- ronmental stewardship programs continue to be available — and on terms that reﬂ ect a much tougher economy than when the last farm bill became law. “The farm bill helps to ensure the food security and economic security of our nation. Directly or indirectly, it beneﬁ ts everyone in towns large and small,” Zippy Duvall, AFBF president, said. National Farmers Union said the lead- ers and staff of House and Senate agricul- ture committees delivered on much-needed improvements to the previous farm bill and continued support for programs that aid family farm sustainability and emerging markets. “Farmers Union members are relieved to have the support of the farm bill heading into an uncertain future for American agricul- ture,” Roger Johnson, NFU president, said. “We’re entering a sixth year of devastat- ingly low farm prices, leading to substantial ﬁ nancial stress for farm families and forcing many out of business,” he said. USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue said Trump’s signature is a Christmas present to American agriculture. “Farmers take ﬁ nancial risks every year as a matter of doing business, so having a farm bill in place gives them peace of mind to make their decisions for the future,” he said. See TRUMP, Page A9 Wallowa County aids victims of California’s Camp Fire Local donations By Ellen Morris Bishop for the Chieftain The Wallowa County Humane Society is working to help the pets and domestic ani- mals still separated from their owners after California’s disastrous, 153,000-acre Camp Fire last month. About 1,300 animals, including cats, dogs, goats, sheep, pigs and chickens remain housed in animal shelters and the Oroville (Butte County) Fairgrounds, awaiting a reunion with their families, according to the Butte County Animal Control website. Joseph resident Trudy Turner learned of the animals caught in the fire through friends who lived in nearby Chico, California. “I just had to do something to help,” she said. “So I gathered up some things I had. Then I put out a call on Wallowa County Classifieds. It was like a firestorm. People brought in food and all kinds of supplies.” Then Turner contacted her friend, Michale Thibideau, a pilot who lived in Tracy, California. See Fire, Page A8 Ellen Morris Bishop for the Chieftain Wallowa County Humane Society Vice President Denise Clevenger tallies up the sheets and ﬂ annel blankets donated to victims of California’s Camp Fire by Wallowa Memorial Hospital.