Gucci's truffle shuffle

Gucci's truffle shuffle

Champion truffle dog got her nose for the hunt in Columbia County In the life originally planned...

Spring is in the soil

Spring is in the soil

Volunteers, students plant wildflowers in St. Helens area A splash of color is soon to appear...

County OKs marijuana moratorium on 2-1 vote

County OKs marijuana moratorium on 2-1 vote

On a split vote, the Columbia County Board of Commissioners approved a land use moratorium...

Big hearts from the Big Island

Big hearts from the Big Island

Columbia Humane Society teams up with newly established dog rescue organization in Hawaii They...


Columbia County's Latest News

SPOTLIGHT PHOTO: MARK MILLER - The budget committee of the St. Helens School District (left), including all five members of the school board, listen as Superintendent Mark Davalos delivers his budget message in the Columbia City School gymnasium Tuesday, April 21.
April 24, 2015

St. Helens schools budget proposal doesn't fund Columbia City…

by Mark Miller
Staff cuts proposed, but student programs stay largely intact The superintendent of the St. Helens School District delivered a budget message Tuesday, April 21, that would delay the planned…
COURTNEY VAUGHN - City Attorney Shelby Rihala (left) and Scappoose City Manager Michael Sykes give feedback to the Scappoose City Council Monday. The council adopted an ordinance to start allowing medical marijuana dispensaries in certain areas within city limits.
April 17, 2015

Scappoose approves pot dispensary program

by Courtney Vaughn
City Council adopts business license program to regulate medical marijuana dispensaries During the same week Columbia County imposed an additional moratorium on marijuana, Scappoose approved a…
April 24, 2015

Superintendent search set for St. Helens schools

by Spotlight news staff
School board plans to interview candidates, choose finalists, make hiring decision next month The board of directors for the St. Helens School District unanimously approved a timeline for its…
COURTNEY VAUGHN - Columbia River PUD directors Harry Price, Jake Carter and Dave Baker review meeting decorum policies Tuesday, April 21. Directors opted not to adopt any changes, but one director is calling for changes within the board.
April 24, 2015

PUD directors weigh public meeting policy

by Courtney Vaughn
Columbia River People's Utility District considers how to make its meetings more civil While volatility from the public may be dissipating, friction remains among directors at Columbia River…
COURTNEY VAUGHN - LUGAR
April 24, 2015

No plans to search for new PUD manager yet

by Courtney Vaughn
Columbia River People's Utility District board keeps Lugar on with employment contract There won’t be a search for a new general manager of Columbia River People’s Utility District just yet. The…
April 24, 2015

Local school districts adopt next year's calendars

by Mark Miller
School to start Sept. 8, after Labor Day School boards in Scappoose and St. Helens have approved similar calendars for the next school year, ahead of their respective budget processes. The St.…
PHOTO COURTESY OF EVA FROST - A few members of the Warren Grange say goodbye to its old building on Millard Road, which was sold in 2010. The building now houses the Columbia Soil & Water Conservation District.
April 24, 2015

Warren Grange to celebrate 100 years

by Mark Miller
Centennial coincides with that of county fair, where it has popular fried bread booth One hundred years ago from last Tuesday, on April 14, 1915, the Warren Grange was first organized. Since its…
Dr. Safina Koreishi.
April 23, 2015

New medical director will serve Scappoose come July

by Spotlight news staff
Safina Koreishi named to leadership position at Columbia Pacific CCO Columbia Pacific Coordinated Care Organization, which serves Columbia County, among others, has named Dr. Safina Koreishi as…
COURTESY OF STARBUCKS CORP. - Coffee House Holdings, a subsidiary of Seattle's Starbucks Corp., is seeking liquor licenses for five more Portland-area shops that could be added to the Starbucks Evening program, where beer and wine are served.
April 22, 2015

Starbucks seeks liquor licenses for more 'Evenings' shops

by Pamplin Media Group
Starbucks is adding a few more Portland-area coffee shops to its “evenings” menu. Coffee House Holdings Inc., a subsidiary of Seattle’s Starbucks Corp., applied this month for Oregon liquor…
Alex Sager.
April 22, 2015

PSU professor to speak about education in St. Helens

by Spotlight news staff
Alex Sager specializes in philosophy, questions recent education reforms The St. Helens Public Library is hosting a discussion with Alex Sager entitled “What is Education For?” on Thursday,…

Don't miss the local news

SPOTLIGHT PHOTO: JOHN WILLIAM HOWARD - Charlie Deng (left) baits the line of his son Richard (right) at a family fishing event at Trojan Pond last April.
Apr 21, 2015

'Family fishing event' at Trojan Pond this weekend

by Spotlight news staff
Over 3,000 trout being released at old nuclear site The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife is hosting a free “family fishing event” at Trojan Park from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, April…
SPOTLIGHT PHOTO: MARK MILLER - Automotive technology students at St. Helens High School work together to solve a problem under the hood of a 2015 Ford Fiesta. The car was provided to the program by St. Helens Auto Center to help the students prepare for a competition next month.
Apr 17, 2015

Getting technical

by Mark Miller
St. Helens High School's auto-tech program thrives Mike Herdrich is proud of his students. Tall, with a long salt-and-pepper beard and a look more befitting a dockhand than a teacher, he’s been…
SPOTLIGHT PHOTO: MARK MILLER - Lucas Carlson (left) and Maggie Lewno (right) with their advanced natural resources teacher at St. Helens High School, Amber Horn. Carlson and Lewno are among the advanced students who have been working with Horn this year to put on field studies for seventh-grade students at St. Helens Middle School.
Apr 17, 2015

7th-graders get another chance at Outdoor School

by Mark Miller
Expanded, student-driven 'field studies' this month include day-trip to Camp Wilkerson Due to budget constraints, this school year was the first in several years that sixth-grade classes in the…
SPOTLIGHT PHOTO: MARK MILLER - The younger Dan Nelson of Scappoose uses a track hoe to tear down the decaying remains of his grandparents' home, which had been vacant since 2005, off Gable Road in St. Helens on Friday, April 10.
Apr 17, 2015

Vacant home on business loop torn down

by Mark Miller
Police: For years, old Nelson house had been ravaged by squatters A small, dilapidated house that had been sitting vacant for about 10 years on Gable Road east of Highway 30 has finally been…
Apr 17, 2015

Columbia Riverkeeper: Documents show refinery planned for…

by KOIN 6 News
Washington oil refinery plan draws criticism from group The documents show that Riverside Refining LLC wants to partner with the Port of Longview to build the largest new refinery in the United…
BUTTS
Apr 17, 2015

High court to take up forcible medication question

by Courtney Vaughn
Oregon State Hospital refuses to medicate accused murderer Daniel A. Butts, despite judge's order To say Daniel A. Butts’ criminal case is complicated would be an understatement. The Kalama,…
COURTNEY VAUGHN - Jacob Jones, pictured here with 6-year-old son Ethan, took down a gunman in his St. Helens neighborhood on Friday, March 27. Jones is being lauded by police and his family for his actions that day.
Apr 17, 2015

St. Helens man hailed as hero after shooting

by Courtney Vaughn
Jacob Jones, a Scappoose High grad, credits martial arts tactics with takedown of gunman While children enjoyed a spring break day outside at around 3:30 p.m. on Friday, March 27, 71-year-old…
COLUMBIA COUNTY JAIL PHOTO - MD Islam, shown here, will plead guilty to charges at an upcoming court hearing in Columbia County, according to the Columbia County D.A.'s Office.
Apr 17, 2015

Beaverton man to plead guilty to sex charges

by Courtney Vaughn
Man charged with soliciting sex from St. Helens teen online A Beaverton man arrested Jan. 10 after he drove to a Walmart store in St. Helens to have sexual contact with a teen girl has struck a…
COURTNEY VAUGHN - Michelle Vandenberg, a jail deputy with the Columbia County Sheriff's Office, checks on inmates in a pod during her shift at the Columbia County Jail. The Sheriff's Office is in the process of hiring more deputies with money it received from a jail levy passed in May 2014.
Apr 17, 2015

Jail levy committee presents first budget

by Courtney Vaughn
Oversight committee talks next levy as finances locked in for 2015; jail now holding 68 local inmates As the county prepares to craft a budget with its first cycle of jail levy funding, talk of…
SPOTLIGHT PHOTO: MARK MILLER - Michelle Graham speaks during a meeting of the Scappoose School District's budget committee on Wednesday, April 15.
Apr 17, 2015

Proposed Scappoose schools budget includes new teachers,…

by Mark Miller
Committee waits on approval until after it holds public hearing There will be a public hearing on Wednesday, May 6, on the draft budget for next school year in the Scappoose School District. The…