2020 Pandemic

The White House / Flickr.com

Congress has adjourned for the weekend, without resolving the issue of “supercharged” unemployment benefits.  The weekly $600 in federal aid for jobless Americans expired Friday (7/31), after the U.S. Senate failed to reach a deal. 

Navy Medicine / Flickr.com/Public Domain

A new online tool helps Oregonians find the nearest COVID-19 testing site, if they suspect they may be infected.

Nick Morrison / Unsplash

The 4J School District has released its re-opening plan for the fall term.  Students have two options that address COVID-19 concerns.

Headway / Unsplash

The Oregon FBI is warning of yet another pandemic-related scam: hiring fraud. 

U.S. Dept. of Agriculture / Flickr.com

With so-called “supercharged” unemployment benefits set to expire at the end of the month, the U.S. Senate is divided largely along party lines on whether or not to extend them.

Leah Nash

As wildfire season gets underway, Native American tribes in Oregon are cautiously preparing under the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Engin Akyurt / Unsplash

The latest round of pandemic scams now includes fake or unapproved antibody tests. 

Colby K. Neal/BLM Public Affairs / National Interagency Fire Center/Flickr

Fire crews are waging a two-front battle this year: besides the expected slew of wildfires across the Pacific Northwest, they’ll also be keeping COVID-19 at bay, which will prove challenging. As part of our monthly series on Oregon’s resilience and natural resources, this story looks at the pandemic’s effects on seasonal wildfire operations.

Brian Bull / KLCC

Homeless people will still be counted in the 2020 Census, despite delays due to the pandemic. 

Neal Herbert / U.S. Department of the Interior

Oregon Democratic Senator Ron Wyden has given a week’s notice to a federal forest official, to better explain how firefighters and rural communities will be safe from both COVID-19 and wildfires this season.

Brian Bull / KLCC

Nearing its 31st anniversary, Eugene’s mobile intervention service, CAHOOTS – which stands for “Crisis Assistance Helping Out On The Streets” – is busier than ever…and needing help.

Utah State Exension

Federal health officials are cautioning Americans about another pandemic-related issue: rats.  As KLCC’s Brian Bull reports, it’s been a recurring problem in the downtown Eugene area…but now it’s moving outward to homes.

A Roseburg family restaurant is facing a roughly $14,000 fine for re-opening its dine-in service, against Governor Kate Brown’s stay-home directive.

EU2016_SK / Flickr.com

Investment scams tied to the COVID-19 pandemic have regulators warning people to be shrewd and vigilant.

Brian Bull / KLCC

Across the U.S., businesses are trying to relaunch. And some are having trouble getting their former employees back. 

Brian Bull / KLCC

A Springfield caterer has helped feed first responders, with meals sourced from local meat suppliers.

Brian Bull / KLCC

As Phase 1 of a statewide re-opening of business and operations begins, many Oregon restaurants are setting the table for customers once more…with pandemic protocols. 

Photo provided by Brian Alexander

The following is a 21-minute conversation between KLCC's Brian Bull and Brian Alexander, a 4J District parts specialist and bus driver recorded May 9, 2020. Alexander lost his wife, MaryKay, to COVID-19 and learned a few days later that he also tested positive.  His wife was the first pandemic casualty recorded in Lane County, and the second person to test positive (Alexander was the third).

Alexander describes his late wife, the first signs that he and MaryKay weren't well, and how he uses music and social media to process the loss felt in the two months since her death.

Photo provided by Brian Alexander

As many states begin easing pandemic restrictions, health officials are urging caution so as not to worsen the COVID-19 outbreak. The human toll is especially real to those who’ve lost loved ones to the disease, including Brian Alexander. The 4J District employee saw his wife, MaryKay, become the first official coronavirus casualty in Lane County on March 14th.  Alexander himself would test positive three days later. KLCC’s Brian Bull spoke to Alexander, and asked what people remember most about his late wife.

Eugene Parks and Open Spaces

Mother’s Day is this Sunday and for many families, it’s a longstanding tradition to take mom to the park. In the new age of social distancing, large crowds wandering along trails is unsafe. Some park officials now have plans to minimize risk.

Brian Bull / KLCC

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed many things, including how police do their jobs. KLCC’s Brian Bull recently talked about that with Eugene Police Chief Chris Skinner.  Bull began by asking if the EPD had seen an uptick of racist acts against Asian-Americans, given that some people blame the pandemic on the “Chinese” or “Wuhan” virus.

Brian Bull / KLCC

Grocery stores and markets are deemed “essential” in this pandemic, meaning they’ll stay open. KLCC’s Brian Bull checked in with stores in Eugene and Springfield on how they safeguard both customers and staff.