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4A • October 12, 2018 • Seaside Signal • seasidesignal.com
appeal for jail
FRIDAY I N NIGHT
he Gulls side is a sea of red;
Astoria’s purple colors more
sparsely seen at the field’s south
The high school band jams a siz-
zling medley of pregame tunes, bass
drums pounding, snares tat-tatting and
Nearby lines form for snacks and
for the single port-a-potty on the path
to Broadway School.
But on this Friday night in Septem-
ber, the press box is the place to be.
The three-story structure is almost
hidden, tucked between the bleachers,
disguised by a storage area on the main
Once you find the secret entrance
and convince yourself it’s OK to stride
the stairs, you arrive at the sportswrit-
er’s hallowed ground.
A coven of regulars scarcely looks
up as a steady processions of visitors
comes and goes — and through the
course of the game, there are many,
from former superintendent Doug
Dougherty to assistant principal Jason
Boyd. Outside, as the wind picks up
and the skies open, others come for
shelter or a run up to the third floor for
a birds’-eye view of the game.
Chairs are at a premium.
Upstairs, from left to right, are Tim
Wunderlich — “Wundy” as he is called
by his Radio Clatsop broadcast partner
(and mayoral candidate) John “Chap-
py” Chapman — at his right.
Each huddles over a large-print
scorecard listing the players’ vital
statistics. On the plywood counter is
enough candy and cakes to make a
Trick-or-Treater consider it a good
night: Franz fruit pies, Hostess choco-
late cupcakes, Peppermint Patties and
“They just don’t make Hostess cup-
cakes like they used to,” Chappy says.
“There’s not enough frosting.”
“No Ding-Dongs?” Wundy gripes,
scanning the hillocks of sweets.
Seaside High School math teacher
Jim Poetsch — also the high school
golf coach — operates the scoreboard
and history teacher Mike Hawes the
public address system.
At the end of the line is the Daily
Astorian’s Gary Henley, so silent that I
SEEN FROM SEASIDE
don’t see him at first, wearing an Ore-
gon Ducks’ cap and diligently writing
notes for Monday’s paper.
The Clatsop Clash
The Clatsop Clash is bigger than
any trophy or award.
The battle of the Astoria Fishermen
and the Seaside Seagulls represents a
century of gridiron competition, pitting
the two largest cities in a county where
there is no pro ball. For the denizens of
Clatsop, the greatest thrill is to watch
young athletes brave the elements
while cheerleaders implore the crowd
to even greater heights of fervor, unde-
terred by lashing torrents of rain that
would deter most mere mortals.
On the field this Friday night, it is
all Gulls from the opening kick-off.
A series of Gulls stars — No. 3,
Brayden Johnson, at wide receiver and
defensive back; No. 25, Gio Ramirez,
running back and linebacker; No. 2,
Alexander Teubner, running back and
safety; No. 6, Payton Westerholm,
quarterback and defensive back; No. 8,
Duncan Thompson, running back and
linebacker — smother the Astoria of-
fense and take the offensive stage with
run after run, racking up 10, 15 and 20
yards and more.
Athletes play both offense and
defense, a challenge that would quickly
exhaust anyone older than 18.
Just when one weapon is utilized,
another piece of the Gulls artillery
enters, with backs batting away passes,
tacklers stopping runners cold and ball
handlers dragging opponents for hard-
earned extra yardage.
Gulls’ kicker Kaleb Bartel is so ac-
curate he hits seven points-after kicks,
and at one point prepares to kick a
40-yard field goal, although the attempt
is whistled dead after a penalty sends
And penalties may be the weak spot
of the Gulls this night, as a few spar-
The Seaside High School band provides a soundtrack for the Gulls winning ways.
n Wednesday, Oct. 3, Chief Deputy Paul Williams
of the Oregon State Police gave a presentation to
the Gearhart City Council regarding Ballot Measure
4-195, better known as the Clatsop County Jail Bond. The
proposed project is developing a new 148-bed county jail
at the former Oregon Youth Authority juvenile facility,
increasing capacity from the 60 beds available in the
existing Astoria jail, reducing early releases of offenders,
and providing separate space to hold inmates with
utilize the existing
youth facility for
staff offices, intake
space, food service
and 20 inmate beds, while placing 128 beds in a new
adjoining section with a more efficient, and safer, layout.
And, to help with the management and physical and mental
health of the inmates, there would also be an indoor gym.
Here are a few facts to chew on.
In 1976 a $2.1 million bond was floated to build a 76
bed jail. That project was scaled back to build a 29-bed jail,
which was eventually erected and opened for business in
1980. By 1983, deputies were already employing double
bunking and the existing gym and laundry areas were
commandeered to be used as dorms. Budgetary implemen-
tations in 1986 reduced the facility to 22 beds. In 2002, a
bond to replace the building failed. In 2004 a grand jury
investigation recommended the county build a new jail.
More studies showed a need to increase staffing to meet the
jail’s most basic needs.
According to Chief Deputy Williams, there are 80
inmates or people awaiting sentencing in the jail on any
given day. The population is officially capped at 60. This
means each month,
50 or more offenders
‘The chief deputy said
are released before the
he loses sleep some
end of their sentence,
or while awaiting trial. nights hoping they
These offenders most
haven’t released back
typically have been
on to the streets a
arrested and charged
person likely to hurt
with burglary, domes-
tic abuse, and assault.
The chief deputy said
he loses sleep some
nights hoping they haven’t released back on to the streets a
person likely to hurt someone.
“On a daily basis, we are picking and choosing,” Wil-
The construction costs for the proposed project are
$23.8 million, to be financed by a $20 million, 20-year
bond. It’s estimated the actual cost to homeowners would
be about $53 a year for a $250,000 property. $3.8 million
would come from surplus state timber revenue. Operating
costs are figured at about $5.2 million a year, resulting in
a $685,000 net increase to the annual sheriff’s office cor-
rections budget. A proposed countywide room tax to raise
$420,000 a year would cover a portion of the increase.
Some of the money, it was unofficially proposed at the
council meeting, in future could come from marijuana tax.
Passing of the measure — and in two years when the
work would be completed — a new jail means convicted
offenders would serve their full sentences. Sanctions on
parole and probation violations cases could be much better
implemented. Sick inmates, whether they have the flu or
are emotionally disturbed, could be kept separated from the
rest of the population, resulting in a safer environment for
inmates and staff.
Perhaps most importantly, limited options for holding
or imposing sentences on defendants charged with rape,
sex abuse, sodomy, domestic violence, and assault with a
dangerous or deadly weapon would change, meaning that
fewer of these offenders would be early turned back out on
to the streets.
The county took over ownership of the Oregon Youth
Authority property on Oct. 1. The time for change is ripe.
Williams urged the councilors and the public to take a
tour of the present jail.
Meanwhile the sheriff’s office will continue to utilize
alternative programs like drug court, designed to help peo-
ple break the cycle of substance abuse and other behaviors
known to contribute to criminal activity. Due to the capac-
ity of the current facility, police say options are limited to
sanction program participants should they fail to abide by
the program’s condition. The sheriff’s office has also insti-
tuted an inmate work crew program, electronic monitoring
(house arrest) and day reporting as jail alternatives.
kling runs are negated by holding calls
behind the line of scrimmage; a face
mask nullifies another play.
If the Gulls hadn’t drawn so many
whistles, who knows, the score might
have been even more lopsided.
Seaside players ignore the elements
until the rain starts to hurt and the
ball spills out of players’ hands like a
In the stands, plastic tarpaulins and
rain slickers blanket the crowd.
Signal photographer Jeff Ter Har
roams the sidelines with an umbrella
the size of a pup tent, pitching a tripod
in the mud; the Astorian’s Colin Mur-
phey confronts pelting rain and fogged
lenses streaked by windswept pellets.
Before the game is done, the “mercy
rule” is invoked, a recent addition to
the Oregon State Athletic Association
Handbook, in which games of 45 points
or more difference are either called
or allowed to play without timeouts
The clock stops only after injury,
heat or “unusual circumstances, such
as a dog on field, etc.” For the Fish-
erman, the fourth quarter would have
been the time to unleash the hounds. As
someone once said, it’s easy to win, but
it’s hard to lose.
Despite a few kerfuffles — 13
penalties for the Gulls, costing them
125 yards — the score piles up on Sea-
side’s behalf. Thompson scores with a
35-yard run and Westerholm surpasses
even that with a 38-yard sprint.
The clock ticks down, and upstairs,
when 0:00 hits, snacks are scooped up,
chairs folded (or not) and the press box
clears out, stories to be filed — just like
at CenturyLink Field.
Eagle Scout Fenton
The press box has been lo-
cated at Broadway Field since
1988, Seaside High School
Assistant Principal Jason Boyd
recalled. “It was mobile when
the field was grass, and has
been in its current location
The bottom level was fully
enclosed this past year to ac-
commodate more storage, Jeff
Roberts, high school principal
and interim football coach,
“That is the same press box
that has been at Broadway
Field prior to my arrival in
Seaside,” Roberts said. “How-
ever, Travis Fenton, a current
senior Seaside football player,
completed a facelift on the
project as an Eagle Scout
project. Travis fully enclosed
the bottom level, repainted
the entire exterior, changed
some electrical work to avoid
having to plug it in with an
extension cord, and restrung
the shutters on the window
openings. He did a great job
and it was a much-needed
too high for
PHOTOS BY R.J. MARX
Tim Wunderlich and John Chapman broadcast from the Broadway Field press booth.
John D. Bruijn
When I first discovered
the Sunset Empire Park and
Recreation District I was
impressed with the facilities
considering Seaside has so
few full-time residents.
I have been gardening
in the “sunny pool garden”
for the past two years. While
there I watched while an ex-
tensive wheelchair ramp was
built, a full-size basketball
court reconstructed, and the
playground for the youth cen-
ter refurbished. I suspect these
were not inexpensive projects.
Now the SEPRD wants
to tear all that out (including
the community garden) and
build a walking track and 2
indoor courts for $20 million!
At the informational
meeting on Sept. 17 I learned
that the new facility was in
the preliminary planning
stages. Surveys revealed that
the respondents desired, in
order (1) an indoor walking
track and (2) an indoor bas-
ketball court. When asked
about property lines, it was
stated that city, school dis-
trict and SEPRD lines are
somewhat intertwined in
the area of the expansion.
I also toured the exsisting
See Letters, Page 5A
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