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We are glad to see the Polk County Community Connect event back to its roots, ready to help all who need help. In the past couple of years, the event shifted to focus on those who were unsheltered homeless. The shift was intended to provide a place for those who are truly out in the open a w…

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In 2016, the state Legislature announced that sex education needed to be taught in grades kindergarten through 12th grade as a matter of health education.

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Our Tweeter in chief has not had many things to crow about lately, but we’ll see some spurious claims coming soon. Our trade deal with China is undoubtedly perfect, (his latest overused word). He doesn’t seem to realize that he and his “good friend,” President Xi, are playing different games…

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I have recently seen three dead deer lying in ditches that apparently have been hit by cars. However, this is a relatively common occurrence here in the county. Too many deer and too many clueless speeders.

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We at the Itemizer-Observer are thrilled to be publishing next week on Christmas Day.

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On Wednesday evening, as we were returning from an event at Western Oregon University, we drove down Monmouth’s Main Street. It was a beautiful sight to behold. Downtown was so festive looking — and busy! Cars were filling every parking space and folks were out walking around. Businesses wer…

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Homeless is not something you find only in big cities. People who are homeless are often easier to spot, and perhaps expected, when walking around a large metro area. But homelessness affects all walks of life in all sizes of towns.

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Two long-standing groups in Dallas who have helped families in need each Christmas have joined forces to help even more with gifts under trees and food on tables.

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Monmouth City Councilor and vice president of the board of directors for the Monmouth-Independence Network, Chris Lopez, published a letter online calling some statements made in last week’s Itemizer-Observer false.

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Remember back in time when we all loved the city of Dallas when they picked up our leaves and left our streets clean? But now leaf pickup is contracted out with the garbage company that leaves a mess all over our streets? What is happening with our city? They don’t enforce weed control or co…

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Phew. Fall sports has ended, and what a season it was! All of our Polk County athletes worked hard over the last several months to be the best they can be. And our coaches were right there alongside them, working long hours, evenings and weekends.

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Recently, Gooseneck rOAd, a popular place for people to go and practice target shooting, was shut down by the Oregon Forestry Department. Why? The reason is two-fold: expanding the logging roads and clearing out trees that are too close to the road; and because of the amount of vandalism. Al…

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All Hallows Eve is tomorrow, and many events are planned throughout Polk County, from downtown trick-or-treats to costume parties at homes and bars and restaurants.

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The Friends of the Dallas Aquatic Center passed out about 1,200 free passes to students at Dallas elementary schools, opening the way for children to get exposure to swimming and playing in the water.

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The Monmouth Skate park committee along with both the cities of Monmouth and Independence would like to give another enthusiastic thank you, this time to Roth’s Grocery for hosting a very successful Bottle Drive. Again we also appreciate the continued support and feedback from the community …

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So far, this fall has been day after day of mostly sunny skies and cold mornings, but the rain is due to revisit us as soon as today — and it may last a week before we see another break.

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It is odd that the Right Wing GOP is always whining about the press not being friendly to their cause. On the contrary, the press has been stunningly incompetent/ineffective in realistically portraying the actions of our increasingly erratic President. The U.S. broadcast and print media desc…

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With fall well on underway, the sunset is coming earlier. Often the evening feels even darker earlier as clouds and rain cover the county. That doesn’t mean people aren’t out enjoying the crisp evening — and morning — air! What it does mean is those who are out for walks or jogs or bicycle r…

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I would like to thank the Siletz Tribal Charitable Contribution Fund for supporting my daughter’s 2018-19 softball season with the Oregon Titans. Along with my daughter, we had two other players from the Monmouth/Independence area. With their generous gift, the team was able to purchase equi…

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You need to find out where the funding will come from for this bill. Estimated 20 cent tax per gallon on all fossil fuels entering this state. This is just the start; the tax will increase in steps till the writers of this bill states it will get to three dollars a gallon in 2050. I ask you …

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Western Oregon University is back in session this week with New Student Week. Classes start full time on Monday.

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Climate change, global warming or whatever you choose to call the disruptions to historical climate patterns occurring around the world, is an existential crisis. We humans are largely responsible, due to our use of fossil fuels, and our rapid deforestation and plundering of the earth’s natu…

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The Dallas Food Bank would like to extend a hearty thanks to all who helped make our 2019 “Fill the Pantry; Pay the Rent” a success.

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Saturday in Polk County is packed with opportunities for entertainment, exercise (for a good cause), getting ready for disaster, and an event at the Polk County Museum, to name a few.

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I stopped at the (Dallas) District office/Morrison School last week to leave some costume supplies for the students. (They put on a fantastic Halloween event for the kids in town.)

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This year seems to be the year of the tree. Earlier, the development of a youth center in Independence required removing some well-established trees. In Monmouth at the S-curves, trees were removed to make way for development of the area.

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We’ve been talking a lot about sidewalks in our community lately. In Monmouth, sidewalk repair is the responsibility of home or business owners.    We’ve heard repeatedly about the burden that places on people, particularly those on fixed incomes. Their city staff and council are looking at …

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Things you should know about the Carbon Cap SB 2020: Even the main sponsor admitted that many things was wrong with his bill. Sponsors knew the effects of this bill would cause economic problems, especially in rural Oregon. Even knowing by reading all the comments and listening from people a…

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I would like to extend thanks to both the Dallas Police Department, and to community members on social media who helped find and hopefully hold accountable the alleged burglar who broke into West Valley Taphouse over the weekend. As a small business owner, theft comes right out of our pocket…