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Jolene Guzman

Stories by Jolene

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Baby on board

Bambinos begins classes, offers more ‘adult time’

Like the children the organization serves, Bambinos is growing.

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Dallas community creates calendar

Jan Ahrendt simply wanted a new cover photo for the Dallas Oregon Community Bulletin Board Facebook page.

Indy, county to explore countywide broadband

The Polk County Board of Commissioners may join the city of Independence in a grant application to pay for a study looking at ways to provide broadband internet service countywide.

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Falls City secures loan for facility

The Falls City School District secured a loan to begin the first phase of building a new gym and classroom facility at Falls City Elementary School.

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SW Polk hopes for new contract

In the face of Falls City area residents’ concerns, members of Southwest Polk Rural Fire Protection District Board vowed Monday night to strike a new contract with the city for fire service.

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Instructional time a challenge for charter school

An Oregon School Boards’ Association review of Dallas Community School, a charter school in Dallas, found it is out of compliance with state instructional hours requirements.

Ballot Measure 101

Statewide elections start early this year with a special election on Jan. 23.

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Youth models responsible hunting

Christopher Younk wasn’t yet 2 years old when he went on his first hunting/camping trip with his family.

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Southwest pulls trucks Tuesday

Two trucks belonging to Southwest Polk Rural Fire Protection District were pulled from Falls City Fire’s station Tuesday morning, changing the city's firefighters' ability to respond to rural areas around Falls City.

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Lorenz receives award

Christina Lorenz, Perrydale’s agriculture teacher and FFA advisor, is Oregon’s “Teachers Turn the Key Award” recipient for 2017.

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Falls City ends contract with SW

Fire department, district work to rebuild without formal agreement

The contract between Southwest Polk Rural Fire Protection District and the city of Falls City will end officially on Monday.

Falls City considers fire levy

The Falls City City Council gave city staff the nod Dec. 14 to pursue putting a five-year levy on the May 2018 primary election ballot to support its fire department.

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Dallas fire crew returns from California

Dallas firefighter Zach Leigh wore a T-shirt emblazoned with the words “SoCal Ablaze.”

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Dallas begins restructuring in city hall

Jason Locke on leave until off Jan. 2 as his department is eliminated, reorganized

The Dallas City Council voted to eliminate the Community Development Department, and its director, Jason Locke, on Dec. 20 as part of a restructuring of city departments.

Protheroe announces retirement from Falls City

Domenica Protheroe, the soon-to-be retired Falls City city clerk, left some parting advice for city leaders.

Caso appointed as judge in Polk County Circuit

A new judge is presiding over cases in Polk County Circuit.

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Perrydale FFA annual food drive grows

Project collects 350,000 pounds of food for those in need from Dallas to Coos Bay

Food collections for the annual Food For All drive, spearheaded by Perrydale FFA, was nearing 350,000 pounds last week.

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Upgrades incoming for Perrydale

Classes will mirror industry standards in modern workshop

A shop makeover is in store for Perrydale Schools thanks to a $372,286 Career and Technical Education Revitalization Grant.

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Mistletoe for a cause

Keagan, 8, raises cash to buy toys for kids in need this Christmas

Keagan Graves took the baton from his older brother, Collin, and now he’s the adorable boy peddling mistletoe during the holiday season.

Focus groups inconclusive

Focus groups evaluating plans to build an all-in-one public safety building in Dallas didn’t provide much insight into how voters would respond if the Dallas City Council put the proposal on the ballot.

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Polk Connect zeroes in on homeless

Event switches focus from ‘at risk’ to aiding people who are unsheltered now

The Polk County Homeless Connect is sharpening its focus for the event in 2018.

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DHS, business leaders want to collaborate

If the education and business leaders developing Dallas High School’s career and technical education program have their way, all the work done in the last year is just the tip of the iceberg.

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Gordon gets crash course as mayor

Jeremy Gordon isn’t used to his new title yet.

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Healing through helping

Debbie McCleery created Kindness Club when she decided the best healing was through helping.

Season’s eatings?

The Itemizer newsroom is back for some baking goodness ... we hope

The 2017 Itemizer Bakeoff Challenge

Akha farm owners arrested last week

The owners of the Akha Farm in Falls City, Matthew McDaniel and Michu Uaiyue, were arrested last week on assault, mistreatment, and sexual abuse charges involving a teen girl.

Ellis takes interim manager in Dallas

The Dallas City Council named Greg Ellis its interim city manager during a special meeting on Dec. 6.

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CTE offers new experiences for students

Dallas High School junior Joe Foster said he’s never experienced a class like engineering.

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Dallas thespians charm in play

High school theater students put on ‘Cinderella Kids,’ opening Friday

The advanced theater class at Dallas High School is condensing all the magic of a Disney classic into 30 minutes in its production of “Cinderella Kids.”

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Christmas comes early

Car Doctor’s Young donates car to family in need

When Christina Smith found out she would be the owner of a new-to-her car, she was in disbelief.

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City council votes to terminate Foggin

Update: Council hires Greg Ellis as interim manager

The Dallas City Council voted to part ways with City Manager Ron Foggin in a 5-to-4 vote Monday night.

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Contract talks reach impasse

Negotiations between Falls City and Southwestern Polk Rural Fire Protection District seem to be at square one after a meeting Thursday between officials of both entities.

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A helping hand

Mike McConnell’s philosophy on giving his time is “if somebody doesn’t do it, it doesn’t get done.”

Foggin, city part ways

Vote to terminate comes after three-hour executive session

Dallas City Council votes to terminate City Manager Ron Foggin.

Library to remain open through at least Aug. 31

The Wagner Community Library will remain open at least until Aug. 31, enough time to complete the 2018 summer reading program.

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CTE aims to bring career focus to youth

Coordinator to get high-schoolers away from going to college for sake of college

Ask Dallas High School career technical education coordinator Tim Ray what one of his biggest pet peeves is and he will say it’s a student who goes to college who doesn’t know why.

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He’s making a list and checking it twice

Santa is ready to visit Polk County

With the Thanksgiving weekend behind us, communities in Polk County turn their thoughts to Christmas.

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Grand jury clears sheriff’s office in shooting

A Polk County grand jury cleared Polk County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Kevin Haynes and Deputy Kelly Lorence in the shooting death of Baltazar Escalona-Baez, 17, of Silverton.

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Boil water notice lifted in Dallas

The city of Dallas lifted a boil water notice Tuesday afternoon that had been in effect in the neighborhood from Polk Station Drive west toward Douglas Street and north of Ellendale Avenue.

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Falls City gets a direct connection

Thursday morning Richard Faber uttered a phrase that people should get used to hearing from him: “Make sure you put your seat belt on.”

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Oh Christmas tree

Christmas trees, particularly the Noble fir variety, may be in short supply nationwide this year, but local tree farm operators say there should be plenty of trees to choose from this holiday season.

Gordon named new mayor of Falls City

Jeremy Gordon quickly fell in love with Falls City when he and his wife moved to town a little more than two years ago.

Monmouth council discusses sidewalk improvements

Improving sidewalks was the subject of a long Monmouth City Council discussion Nov. 7 in a work session that followed the regular council meeting.

City plans to examine street maintenance budget

The city of Dallas plans to form a citizens committee to examine and make recommendations on how to spend the city’s street maintenance budget.

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FACES plans for uncertain future

Christopher Scadden wants the students in his acting class to let their anger show.

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Interact Club sees power of past decision

Members Dallas High School’s Interact Club learned this week the impact of a decision it made two years ago.

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Ungricht steps down as mayor

Terry Ungricht, the mayor and city manager of Falls City, resigned his mayoral responsibilities on Thursday.

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URD may extend duration 10 years

The Dallas Urban Renewal District may extend the duration of its district, possibly another 10 or more years.

Whooping cough hits Dallas High

Polk County Public Health officials confirmed a case pertussis or whooping cough was at Dallas High School on Thursday.

Program may mark the start of new partnership

Saturday’s Dallas Make-a-thon was about more than building prototypes.