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October 17th, 2012 WW Editorial Staff | Murmurs
 

Murmurs: County Cat Kill Count Reconsidered

You’re either on the bus or on the other bus.

murmurs2_3850IMAGE: Amy Martin
  • Last week, Murmurs quoted Ron Murray, a founder of Oregon Dog PAC—a political action committee aimed at starting a no-kill shelter—as saying the Multnomah County animal shelter euthanizes 64 percent of cats it takes in. Oops—we should have checked with the shelter before running that stat. County Animal Services director Michael Oswald says those numbers are outdated: The shelter has lowered its euthanasia rate of cats from 62 percent in 2008 to 46 percent last year. “We’re all focused on the same goal,” Oswald says. “It takes time.” The county launched a new pet adoption campaign Oct. 15; its ads show a cartoon cat in an Uncle Sam hat.
  • One of Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum’s tasks is to clean up the mess left by a 2010 Oregon Department of Energy case. That’s the investigation into how a state contract business was steered to a partnership owned in part by Cylvia Hayes, Gov. John Kitzhaber’s companion. During the investigation, the Eugene law firm of Harrang Long represented Mark Long, Energy’s interim director, who was cleared of wrongdoing. The firm has served the state with an $871,000 legal bill. It’s a bit touchy for Rosenblum: Long’s lawyers were among her supporters in her campaign for AG. Her Department of Justice attorneys told a judge the billings—by Bill Gary ($450 per hour) and former University of Oregon President Dave Frohnmayer ($550 per hour)—were excessive and the state should pay no more than $100,000. Last week, however, a Marion County judge awarded Harrang Long $562,569. Rosenblum spokesman Jeff Manning says the DOJ is appealing.
  • The latest Oregon bus project is being driven by the Tea Party. The anti-tax movement is using a former city bus to transport canvassers into contested legislative districts to stump for conservative candidates. “We can drive around the district with the candidate’s signs in the windows, getting out the message,” says Tea Party spokesman Jeff Reynolds. Shipping volunteers on a bus has been a decade-long hallmark of the Oregon Bus Project, the Portland-based voter registration group co-founded by state Rep. Jefferson Smith (D-East Portland). The Tea Party’s ride, dubbed the “Freedom Bus,” is emblazoned with a Ronald Reagan quote. Last weekend, the Tea Party bus sent about 20 volunteers to knock on doors for Scott Hansen, a Republican candidate running against state Sen. Laurie Monnes Anderson (D-Gresham) in Senate District 25; and Art Robinson, a Cave Junction chemist and newsletter publisher who’s challenging U.S. Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) in Oregon’s 4th Congressional District.
 
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