Today’s News Headlines

KELA News Headlines for Thursday, April 26, 2018

Centralia Street Solicitation Ordinance Repealed

The Centralia City Council Tuesday night repealed a city ordinance that prohibited the solicitation of occupants of motor vehicles on public roadways and replaced it with an ordinance that prohibits pedestrian activities within roadways meant for vehicular traffic. City attorney Shannon Murphy-Olson says the action comes after the American Civil Liberties Union said the ordinance approved last year singled out one class of persons. It means that activities such as panhandling can only take place on improved sidewalks. It also means activities such as Riverside Fire Authority’s “Fill the Boot” charity campaign cannot be done in the street.

Child Molestation Arrest

A Centralia man is in custody for an alleged child molestation incident in Centralia. Dusty Breen with the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office says about 10:30 PM on Tuesday deputies responded to the 200 block of West Carson Street in Centralia for the report of a disorderly person. While speaking to people at the residence, they were told about an incident involving an 11-year old girl that had taken place earlier in the evening where the suspect allegedly touched the girl inappropriately as she was getting out the shower. Breen says 45-year old Carlos G. Reyna was arrested and booked into the Lewis County Jail for first degree child molestation.

Rochester Crash Victim Identified

The Thurston County Coroner’s Office has identified the man who died in an early morning crash near Rochester on Tuesday as 32-year old Alan E. Meserve. The Olympian reports no hometown was given. The collision on Sargent Road just south of 173rd Avenue Southwest was reported about 2:30 AM. The Thurston County Sheriff’s Office says the initial investigation shows Meserve’s car was traveling too fast and failed to negotiate a curve. He was the only occupant in the car.

Lewis County PUD Commissioner Elected President of State Association

Two Lewis County PUD commissioners are serving in top leadership positions for the Washington Public Utility Districts Association for 2018-19. Lewis County PUD Commissioner Dean Dahlin was recently elected as the Association’s President. He has previously served as Secretary and Vice-President. Dahlin’s fellow Commissioner Ben Kostick is currently serving in the second year of his term as Treasurer.  Also elected to leadership positions were Chelan County PUD Commissioner Randy Smith as Vice-President and Skamania County PUD Commissioner Liz Green as Secretary.

Port of Olympia Director Placed on Leave

The Port of Olympia commissioners voted Monday to place longtime port executive director Ed Galligan on paid administrative leave. The commissioners appointed the port’s airport director Rudy Rudolph to serve as acting executive director while Ed Galligan is on leave. The Commission says it is undertaking a thorough review of the Port’s leadership going forward and believes that its action Monday will permit it to fully evaluate its options.  Galligan has served as executive director since November 2005.

U S House Passes Dams Protection Bill

The U.S. House of Representatives has approved a bill that would effectively reverse a federal judge’s order to spill water from four Pacific Northwest dams to help migrating salmon reach the Pacific Ocean. The bill would prevent any changes in dam operations until 2022. The House approved the bill, 225-189, on Wednesday. It was sponsored by Washington Republican Representatives Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Dan Newhouse. The bill’s sponsors say the four Snake River dams provide hydropower, flood control and other benefits while allowing record salmon runs. The bill now goes to the Senate.