Day: January 28, 2011

Toddler saves father with 911 call

By ERIC HOWALD Of the Keizertimes A 3-year-old Keizer boy possibly saved his father’s life when he called 9-1-1 after the man cut himself with a woodworking chisel. At 10:13 a.m. Friday,  A.J. Hayes, 3, called 9-1-1 and told a dispatcher that his father was hurt and needed help and then hung up. The dispatcher called back and the boy picked up the phone to ask whether he needed police or an ambulance. The boy replied, “okay,” and hung up again. When the dispatcher called a third time, the boy stayed on the phone and was able to unlock the front door shortly before Officer Scott Bigler of the Keizer police arrived at the address, 2002 Brandon Court N.E.. Bigler found the father, Aaron Hayes, leaning over the sink attempting to staunch the bleeding from a wound on his arm. Bigler began basic first aid treatment and a crew from the Keizer Fire District arrived just behind him. Hayes cut himself with a chisel and severed an artery while working on homework from a recent class. “What we’ve heard was that he was taking classes and planning on volunteering at the Salem Carousel,” said Anne-Marie Penge, Keizer Fire District spokesperson. Hayes was transported Salem Hospital where he was treated and released. The incident underscored the importance of teaching children to recognize numbers at an early age, said Keizer Fire...

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Local unemployment falls for 1st time since June

Unemployment in the Salem area fell in December 2010 to 10.8 percent, down from the November revised rate of 11.5 percent. It’s the first time since June 2010 that the unemployment rate for the Salem area has dropped. The number is still slightly higher than the statewide seasonally adjusted rate of 10.6 percent, and is higher than the 10.5 percent rate in December 2009. Statistics are for the Salem Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), which includes Keizer. An estimated 21,191 Marion and Polk county residents were unemployed in a labor force of 197,469, according to WorkSource Oregon. An estimated 1,314 more people were unemployed in the area than in December 2009. Total non-farm employment in December was 144,000, a decline of 2,700 jobs since December 2009, with 2,400 coming from the private sector. In the month, total nonfarm employment fell by 1,500 jobs, with the private sector losing 1,200 and government dropping 300 jobs. The employment loss between November and December is “very typical” for the Salem area, according to Regional Economist Patrick O’Connor. The area has lost more than 11,000 jobs between April 2008 and December 2010, O’Connor stated. In key sectors: • Construction shed 200 jobs in December and has declined by 600 jobs in the past 12 months. • Professional and business services continued to decline, dropping 100 positions. • Manufacturing jobs fell by 600 jobs, mostly due...

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Government by petition?

Are we headed into a new era of citizen legislation?  We could be. A citizen-backed initiative limiting where big retail builders can be built is headed for the March ballot.  A anti-cell phone tax referendum was rendered moot when the city council repealed that tax and want to send the question to the voters themselves. Two ballot measures in the matter of six months from Keizer citizens is a sign that times are a-changing.  The public wants a hand in decisions that affect their daily lives.  Our system of government allows just about anything to be placed on the ballot by the people as long as it has the requisite number of signatures. We have all seen election ballots that are filled with initiatives and referendums.  This is democracy in its most basic and glorious form—the people having their say when they don’t get the result they seek from their elected officials. For Keizer the issue is money.  Unless there is a process in which a citizen-driven initiative is always sent to the next scheduled election, the cost would get out of hand very quickly.  The special election in March for the building limitation question will cost the city about $20,000 to conduct.  March 8, the election date, is not on Marion County’s regular election schedule (there are scheduled elections in May and November).  Now imagine if there were...

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Celtic swimmers rout Vikings

By ERIC A. HOWALD Of the Keizertimes Amidst the practices, dual meets and ramp up to district competition, it’s easy to for members of the McNary varsity swimming teams to forget that swimming is supposed to be fun. Fortunately, that wasn’t the case when the boys and girls teams took to the pool in a meet with the North Salem Vikings. Many of the swimmers got to compete in races other than their specialties and both teams won their part of the meet. The boys won 117-53, the girls won 121-48. “It felt good to have fun swimming again. There wasn’t as much pressure during that meet,” said Ryan Tesdal, who set a new personal record in the 100 backstroke, an event he won with a time of 1:04.39. “Everybody swam pretty well we had a good number of personal records,” said Celt Dominic Meyer. “Everybody is progressing and working hard and getting better.” Meyer won the 100 fly with a time of 1:01.26 and the 100 breast in 1:11.26. Celt Kevin Groves won a trio of races: the 200 free in 2:10.65; the 50 free in 24.11; and the 100 free in 55.00. “It was an even more impressive set because he had only 10 minutes rest between the the 200 and the 50,” said Kim Phillips, McNary head coach. Freshman Seth Miller topped the podium in the...

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