NCWLIFE Evening News June 4, 2019

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Good evening and welcome to the NCWLIFE Evening News. I’m Grant Olson. Before we get to today’s top news stories, let’s take a quick look outside our weather window:

And now, a few of the stories we’re following for you tonight, Another round of public power benefit projects has been tentatively approved by Chelan County PUD Commissioners. April’s unemployment rate in the Wenatchee Metro Area was up compared to last year, and, The U.S. Forest Service will be attacking an expected Douglas-fir moth outbreak this summer in our area forests.   

But first, we begin tonight. . .

A report of a vehicle fire near Tonasket on Monday ended with a suspect being shot by an Okanogan County Sheriff’s sergeant and deputy.

37-year-old Lance R. Bowers was treated for gunshot injuries after being air-lifted to Central Washington Hospital in Wenatchee, then taken to jail. According to the sheriff’s office, about 7:00 Monday night fire crews responded to a burning car near the Aeneas Valley store.

Firefighters then found a body inside the trunk. Witnesses reported seeing Bowers leaving the car fire earlier and he was located near the store. The sheriff’s office said he was armed with a firearm and was shot when he did not comply with orders to drop the weapon. The North Central Washington Special Investigations Unit is investigating the incident.

State crews were mobilized this morning to help fight a brush fire near Beverly that has consumed more than five thousand acres. This morning, a Level 3 evacuation order was issued for the Smyrna Canyon area along Lower Crab Creek Road, meaning residents were told to leave immediately. That area is about five miles south of Royal City and about 25 homes were at risk. Grant County firefighting crews battled the blaze along Beverly Burke Road and state Route 243 overnight before being joined by state crews this morning. Several out buildings are reported to have been destroyed but no homes. Level 2 evacuations were ordered for Beverly, Schawana and Wanapum Village. Level 2 indicates a significant risk.

The Highway 243 Fire also has damaged Grant County PUD poles and lines, knocking out power to about 285 customers. The PUD also reported that it has lost fiber optics infrastructure to about 500 customers in the Beverly and Mattawa areas.

Another round of public power benefit projects has been tentatively approved by Chelan County PUD Commissioners. NCEWLIFE’s Steve Hair reports . . .

According to the Washington State Employment Security Department, April’s 5-point-5 percent unemployment rate in the Wenatchee MSA (Chelan and Douglas counties) was up five-tenths of a point compared to last year. The local monthly unemployment rate has now risen for the past five months, a trend which the state employment department bears watching.

A positive note in the report shows year-over-year monthly civilian labor force growth rates have been fairly robust in the Wenatchee MSA which indicates that workers are still entering the labor force in Chelan and Douglas Counties.

The U.S. Forest Service will be attacking an expected Douglas-fir Tussock moth outbreak this summer in area forests.

Data collected on moth egg masses high along the slopes of Blewett Pass over the past several months indicates a moderate outbreak is likely this summer, the Forest Service reports.

From 1999 to 2002, a severe tussock moth outbreak damaged more than 45,000 acres of forest in Washington. Helicopters will be used beginning as early as next week to spray a natural bio control on forest lands in the Blewett Pass, Lake Wenatchee and Methow Valley areas. The Forest Service stresses that the spray is natural and they will not be using chemical insecticides. The sticky spray is a mixture of water, molasses and a virus unique to the moth. 

Coming up next, It looks like voters in Grant County will be asked in November for a sales tax hike to pay for law enforcement needs at the sheriff’s office. If you’ve been putting off burning your yard waste, you’re too late. Burn bans went into effect June first, and, Chelan Fire and Rescue has added a new rescue boat to its life-saving efforts on Lake Chelan.      I’m Grant Olson and you’re watching the NCWLIFE Evening News.

Welcome back, and in other news. . .

It looks like voters in Grant County will be asked in November for a sales tax hike to pay for law enforcement needs at the sheriff’s office.

Sheriff Tom Jones informed County Commissioners this week that he’s going forward with a ballot request for a three-tenths of one percent sales tax increase to raise about 5.8 million dollars in revenue. Cities would receive a 40 percent share of the tax proceeds with the County receiving 60 percent. The City of Quincy has committed to sharing its full share of the tax increase with the county. 

If you’ve been putting off burning your yard waste, you’re too late. Burn bans went into effect June first in Douglas and Grant Counties and begin Wednesday in Chelan County. The bans do not include recreational burns, like campfires and fire pits, though if dry and dangerous conditions develop those could be banned as well.

The burn bans typically run through September. Already this year, yard and orchard burns have gotten out of control and caused several fires in North Central Washington.

Chelan Fire and Rescue has added a new rescue boat to its life-saving efforts on Lake Chelan.

The 2003 25-foot Safe Boat Defender was purchased through government surplus. Previously, it had been used by the Coast Guard. The district purchased the boat using only twenty-five-hundred dollars from its budget and three-thousand dollars from the sale of its previous boat.

A Honda 225-horse power engine was purchased by the Firefighters Association for the new boat. On Sunday, rescue personnel held successful sea trials for the vessel. The district is seeking grant funds to equip the boat with a water gun and other equipment.

You’re watching the NCWLIFE Evening News. Coming up next, tonight’s feature story and your complete local weather forecast. That and much more still to come on the NCWLIFE Evening News, stay with us.

Welcome back to the NCWLIFE Evening News. . .

Washington’s new sanctuary state law forbids local officials from helping federal agents enforce some immigration laws. But some law enforcement officials complain the new law prevents police from working with immigration and customs enforcement agents in preventing criminal activity by people who are in the U.S. illegally. In tonight’s feature story, Chelan County Sheriff Brian Burnett says the new law will not affect his office working relationship with Federal immigration agencies. . .

And that is a look at your local weather forecast, coming up next, tonight’s sports report with Eric Granstrom and more as the NCWLIFE Evening News continues right after this.

Buy me some peanuts and crackerjacks and take me out to the ballgame…it was opening night for the Wenatchee AppleSox last night at Paul Thomas, Sr. Field…

As far as the game, Wenatchee took care of business against the Cascade Collegiate League showcase team, winning 10-to-1.  The big inning for the ‘Sox came in a 5-run 2nd, highlighted by a 2-run double by Tyler Detloff and two run home run by Johnny Sage…

For a complete wrap on the game, let’s hear from our old buddy Joel Norman, the “Voice” of the AppleSox…

Thanks Joel.  Yes, the ‘Sox and HarbourCats tonight at 6:35 with Eric throwing out the first pitch and then joining Joel on the radio broadcast as well.

Also in West Coast League Baseball action today…

Cowlitz is at Bend; Ridgefield hosts Yakima Valley; and Kelowna visits Bellingham all at 6:35.  At 7:05 it’s Corvallis at Walla Walla and Port Angeles in Portland to face the Pickles.

In Seattle, another big early inning spelled the difference as Houston topped the Mariners 4-2 at T-Mobile Park…

Josh Reddick hit an RBI-triple and Robinson Chirinos hit a solo home run in a 3-run 1st inning for Houston off Seattle spot-starter Cory Gearrin.  Wade LeBlanc came on in the 2nd and went the next 8-innings, allowing just one run on three hits.

The Mariner’s scoring came in the 3rd on solo home runs by Malix Smith and Edwin Encarnacion.

The two teams play again tonight at 7:10 with Wade Miley going for the Astros.  Seattle has yet to announce its starter.

Turning to the Les Schwab American League West Scoreboard…

There was only one other game in the Division as the Chicago Cubs beat the Los Angeles Angels 8-to-1.  Jon Lester pitched 7-innings with 6-strikeouts to earn the victory on the mound.

With Houston’s win over Seattle and Oakland and Texas idle, the Astros lead in the A-L West is now 9-games over the Rangers and 11 in front of Oakland.  The Mariners continue to sink in the West with a 25-and-38 record, 17-games out of first place.

The Mariners went for pitching in the first day of the Major League Baseball Draft Monday…

Seattle selected right-handed pitcher George Kirby, out of Elon (ee-LAWN) University, with its 1st round selection last night.  Texas Christian left-hander Brandon Williamson was next in the 2nd round for the Mariners.  And in a Round B selection in a trade with Cleveland, Seattle picked Isaiah Campbell, a right-hander out of the University of Arkansas.

Meanwhile, it was a big night for the West Coast League…

For the first time in league history, a West Coast League alum was selected with the #1 overall pick.  Former Corvallis Knight catcher Adley Rutschman was selected first by Baltimore.

In addition, the West Coast League had never had a 1st round selection as high as #3 and former Victoria HarbourCat Andrew Vaughn went to the Chicago White Sox with the 3rd pick.

Former Wenatchee AppleSox Mike Toglia was also a 1st-round selection, going to the Colorado Rockies with the 23rd overall selection.

Thanks Eric. Recapping tonight’s top news stories. . .

State crews were mobilized this morning to help fight a brush fire near Beverly that has consumed more than five thousand acres.

This morning, a Level 3 evacuation order was issued for the Smyrna Canyon area along Lower Crab Creek Road, meaning residents were told to leave immediately. That area is about five miles south of Royal City and about 25 homes were at risk.

Grant County firefighting crews battled the blaze along Beverly Burke Road and state Route 243 overnight before being joined by state crews this morning. Several out buildings are reported to have been destroyed but no homes. Level 2 evacuations were ordered for Beverly, Schawana and Wanapum Village. Level 2 indicates a significant risk.

The Highway 243 Fire also has damaged Grant County PUD poles and lines, knocking out power to about 285 customers. The PUD also reported that it has lost fiber optics infrastructure to about 500 customers in the Beverly and Mattawa areas.

According to the Washington State Employment Security Department, April’s 5-point-5 percent unemployment rate in the Wenatchee MSA (Chelan and Douglas counties) was up five-tenths of a point compared to last year. The local monthly unemployment rate has now risen for the past five months, a trend which the state employment department bears watching.

A positive note in the report shows year-over-year monthly civilian labor force growth rates have been fairly robust in the Wenatchee MSA which indicates that workers are still entering the labor force in Chelan and Douglas Counties. 

And that’s going to do it for our newscast tonight. For more on these stories and other news from around North Central Washington, you can find us on Facebook or our website at ncwlife.com. And, remember, if you see news happening we’d like to hear from you.  You can send us an email at news@ncwlife.com, or give us a call 888-NCWL (6295). Also, keep it right here on the NCWLIFE Channel tomorrow morning for Wake Up Wenatchee Valley with host Dan Kuntz. I’m Grant Olson, thanks for joining us and have a great night.