The Blue Mountain eagle. (John Day, Or.) 1972-current, April 13, 2016, Image 1

Below is the OCR text representation for this newspapers page. It is also available as plain text as well as XML.

Blue Mountain
Grant County’s newspaper since 1868
W EDNESDAY , A PRIL 13, 2016
to sue
John Day
related to refuge
By Sean Hart
Blue Mountain Eagle
Sheriff Glenn Palmer has
given notice he intends to sue
the city of John Day and its em-
ployees for a list of allegations
stemming from actions related
to the occupation of the Mal-
heur National Wildlife Refuge.
Palmer’s attorney, Benja-
min Boyd from Hostetter Law
Group in Enterprise, sent a tort
claim notice
received by
the city April
4 that states
Palmer will
assert claims
for damages
city, John Day
dispatch em-
ployees, City
Manager Peggy Gray and Po-
lice Chief Richard Gray. The
notice is required before fi ling
a lawsuit against a public body.
In the notice, Boyd said,
as Palmer was traveling to a
roadblock near Seneca after
the law enforcement action
Jan. 26 that led to the arrest of
most of the occupation lead-
ers and the death of one, city
dispatchers falsely determined
a passenger with Palmer was
a militia member. He said the
passenger was actually Grant
County District Attorney Jim
Boyd said Palmer asked
an unidentifi ed dispatcher for
an update, who “knowingly
and/or recklessly” withheld
information from Palmer that
had been relayed previously
to a variety of other law en-
forcement agencies. Palmer
and Carpenter’s lives were in
danger, Boyd said, as they pro-
ceeded to the police roadblock
with offi cers believing Palm-
er was traveling with a militia
Boyd also alleges the dis-
patchers breached the contract
to “provide appropriate infor-
mation to authorized person-
nel” between the city and the
sheriff’s offi ce.
The notice goes on to list
complaints against John Day’s
dispatch manager, police chief
and city manager.
See PALMER, Page A18
• N O . 15
• 18 P AGES
• $1.00
Jury: County did not discriminate
against lesbian job applicant
Myers: County will add sexual orientation discrimination to policy manual
By Sean Hart
Blue Mountain Eagle
Grant County and its former
community corrections director
did not illegally deny a job appli-
cant on the basis of sexual orien-
tation, a federal jury ruled April 6.
A jury in U.S. District Court in
Pendleton unanimously agreed for-
mer county parole and probation
manager Dean Hoodenpyl did not
fail to hire applicant Terry Hanson
because of her sexual orientation
in violation of her constitutional
rights. Further, the jury ruled sex-
ual orientation was
not the sole reason,
a motivating factor
or a substantial fac-
tor in the county’s
decision not to hire
Scott Myers said he
was satisfied with
the result and pleased the case was
“After all of the witnesses were
heard, the jury of eight found us
not guilty of the allegations of dis-
crimination because of sexual ori-
entation,” he said. “... The reason
she did not get an interview had
nothing to do with her sexual ori-
Hanson’s attorney, Matthew C.
Ellis, said he and his client still be-
lieve she experienced discrimina-
tion because of her sexual orienta-
tion, which has been illegal under
state law for more than eight years.
“There was no question that,
when discussing Ms. Hanson’s job
application, Grant County referred
to her in highly inappropriate terms
that have no place in a (sic) either a
civilized society or a family news-
paper,” he said in an email. “Like-
wise, there was no serious question
as to whether the decisionmakers
(sic), Grant County and Mr. Hood-
enpyl, have a negative attitude to-
ward gays and lesbians. This atti-
tude is consistent with the official
Grant County employment policies
that were in effect as of the time
of the employment decision — and
possibly still to this day — which
purport to proscribe all forms of
discrimination, except for sexual
orientation discrimination.”
See JOB, Page A18
By Cheryl Hoefl er
Blue Mountain Eagle
“My baby stopped breathing.”
“The neighbor’s house is on fi re.”
Around the clock, dispatchers
are prepared for the unexpected
“We just saw three horses
running down the highway.”
When an emergency dispatcher picks up the
phone, they never know what the person on the
other end of the line is going to say.
Being prepared for anything and everything is
part of the around-the-clock job these front-line
fi rst responders face, whether that voice is report-
ing a crisis or relaying valuable information.
Cammie Haney, a dispatcher at the John Day
Emergency Communications Center, said every
day is different.
“You never know what’s going to happen,”
she said.
Multi-tasking and staying calm are vital qual-
ities toward having that level of preparedness,
Haney said.
“How you react to a call will affect how the
caller responds,” she said. “It sets the tone for the
Haney has been with John Day Dispatch for
10 years. Her training included two weeks at the
police academy and 6-8 weeks “in-house” at the
John Day offi ce.
See CALL, Page A18
The Eagle/Cheryl Hoefler
Cammie Haney, who has been a dispatcher for almost 10 years, works at the
John Day Emergency Communications Center. This week is National Public
Safety Telecommunications Appreciation Week.
How you react to a call will affect how the caller responds.
It sets the tone for the situation.” – Cammie Haney
Commercial fl ights could happen for Grant County
Sen. Ferrioli
gives stamp
of approval
By Angel Carpenter
Blue Mountain Eagle
JOHN DAY — A new
funding source may make
flights to and from Grant
County a reality.
A meeting in John Day
April 6 conducted by the
State Department of Avi-
ation to discuss the possi-
bility of establishing com-
mercial air service in rural
communities drew 16 peo-
ple from John Day, Baker
and La Grande.
House Bill 2075, passed
in 2015, raised the jet fuel
tax from 1 cent to 3 cents
The Eagle/Sean Hart
Grant County Regional Airport, pictured here,
may host commercial air service in the future.
Interested parties met last week to discuss the
a gallon, with a portion of
proceeds earmarked to help
smaller airports set up com-
mercial service. It could
lead to service here in the
next year or so.
“It’s going to be a huge
benefit to rural airports like
Grant County,” said airport
manager Patrick Bentz.
He said several clusters
of people who would likely
have an interest in the ser-
vice were identified at the
meeting, including local
business people, residents
in general, government
employees and veterans
traveling to and from doc-
tors appointments and
Bentz said four com-
munities, including John
Day, Burns, Baker and La
Grande, would need to be
incorporated in order to
make the plan work.
So far, one air service, a
licensed and qualified com-
pany from Medford, has
shown an interest in provid-
ing the flights.
Bentz said the service in
John Day would not be tra-
Airport security would
have a reverse screening
process. Instead of having
TSA screen passengers be-
fore boarding locally, pas-
sengers would be screened
at their destinations.
Flights would likely not
be available every day, but
have slots open on certain
days, or a book of tickets
could be used.
“There are many differ-
ent options that we’re look-
ing at,” Bentz said.
There are a few ques-
tions that Bentz and the
Grant County Airport Com-
mission have for the public
to help guide decisions in
the matter.
See FLIGHTS, Page A18