Friday, January 21, 2022


Despite a failed attempt in the U.S. Senate, more than 200 business owners call for federal reforms to strengthen election laws, and the U.S. Supreme Court deals another blow to abortion providers.


President Biden gets cheers and jeers as he marks his first year in the White House, the Jan. 6 committee wants to hear from Ivanka Trump, and the Supreme Court rejects another challenge to the Texas abortion law.


Expanded broadband akin to electrification in rural America 80 years ago; small Wyoming grocery store survives monopolization; revitalized Kansas town gets national recognition; and Montana's Native communities look for voter suppression work-arounds.

Solution to Wildlife Collisions Needed on OR Highway


Wednesday, August 11, 2021   

VALE, Ore. - Eastern Oregonians are calling for a solution to wildlife collisions along a stretch of highway through the Malheur River Canyon, and the Burns Paiute Tribe is leading the effort.

Vehicle crashes with mule deer on a windy part of U.S. Highway 20 are estimated to cost more than $1 million a year. Harney County Commissioner Kristen Shelman described the section of road.

"It's a very dangerous situation," she said. "There's many tight corners and they come out of nowhere. You really have no time or warning to see the deer and to try to stop."

The Burns Paiute Tribe collared and collected data on mule deer between 2010 and 2013, and has identified the biggest problem spots. Mule deer populations have declined as much as 40% in the Malheur Canyon area in recent years.

Burns Paiute Tribal Council Chair Jody Richards said it's important for people to make it safely through this stretch of highway. She also noted that mule deer are important to the tribe, and not only for the meat they provide.

"The hide - we still make moccasins," she said. "People still tan the hides. They still make gloves. They use the antlers for digging. There's all different kinds of things we use that whole animal for, so it's very important to the tribe and the people here."

Shelman pointed to the benefits of wildlife crossings installed on another highway in central Oregon, which reduced collisions there by 86%.

"One of the solutions that is being discussed is something similar to what (U.S.) Highway 97 has undergone," she said, "with trying to put in some access points for the deer to go under the road."

Funding is the biggest barrier. Shelman said they hope to find money from different sources. One could be the Federal Transportation Bill, which Congress is working to reauthorize. It will likely including dedicated funding for wildlife crossings, for the first time.


Support for this reporting was provided by The Pew Charitable Trusts.

get more stories like this via email
Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2018 to fill the seat previously held by Republican Jeff Flake. (Flickr)

Social Issues

A wave of new Arizona voters in the 2020 election changed the normally conservative state to one where progressive candidates and ideas have a fightin…

Social Issues

Healthcare workers at an Oregon hospital have achieved what they say is a "win" after several strikes in recent months. Nearly 300 workers and …


As Pennsylvania continues to grow its solar-energy capacity, a new report found the roofs of big-box stores present a big opportunity to increase …

While such issues as tax cuts are getting attention in the Iowa Legislature, some advocacy groups hope policymakers don't lose sight of programs they say would improve health outcomes. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

If Iowa wants to create healthier outcomes for its residents, advocates say there are steps policymakers can take right now to make it happen…

Social Issues

North Dakota has returned a significant portion of the rental assistance provided by the federal government in the pandemic, but groups working …

The investigation by multiple states' attorneys general into the student-loan practices of Navient dates back to 2017. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Nearly 1,200 Hoosiers are about to have some of their student-loan debt forgiven, as part of a multistate settlement with the student-loan-servicing …

Social Issues

After a defeat on Wednesday, Democrats in the U.S. Senate say they'll keep trying to pass voting-rights legislation, and one Wisconsin group wants …

Social Issues

Bridgeport is one of six U.S. cities selected for an 18-month project kicking off this month, to create more education and career opportunities for …


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021