By Jeb Bladine • President / Publisher • 

Bladine: Interesting stories just keep on coming

Stimulating local stories abound in recent weeks, prompting this occasional column with “short takes” on the news.

- Have we solved the mystery of those “booms” bothering area people for months? They now are suspected to be detonations of “binary targets” on a site just south of Bayou Golf Course. Binary explosives combine an oxidizer and a fuel, neither on the federal List of Explosive Materials and thus unregulated except in two states. However, one online source reports, “When binary components are combined, the resulting mixture is an explosive material subject to ATF regulatory requirements found in 27 CFR, Part 555 - Commerce in Explosives.” Let’s hope the boom-booms subside and, with law enforcement encouragement, disappear.


Jeb Bladine is president and publisher of the News-Register.

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- Yamhill County commissioners withdrew their appeal of a court declaration that their gun sanctuary ordinance violates state laws. With that $25,000 in legal costs officially wasted, they plan to write a new sanctuary ordinance to protect us from “inept state politicians and Portland activists.” If commissioners could create some magical imaginary characters for this drama, we could call it “The Neverending Story.”

- Our newspaper left downtown McMinnville after about 150 years of residency, moving into Riverside Drive facilities just beyond the Water & Light compound. I remember, long ago, when the W&L move from downtown sparked protests … not so for this newspaper office move except indirectly. A developer’s controversial proposal to replace our downtown buildings with a new hotel complex creates a conflict of interest situation, so for now I’ll just echo what news sources occasionally tell us: “No comment.”

- It appears imminent that McMinnville will have a private task force to explore how McMinnville might respond differently to people who are homeless, transients or vagrants, and how to end various unsightly, unsanitary, unsafe local conditions. It’s been a long time coming, as evidenced by a 2017 comment in this space: “Situations change when homelessness deteriorates into vagrancy, drugs, malignant loitering, menacing and various criminal behaviors … People frustrated by such recent behaviors in downtown McMinnville are demanding a greater sense of urgency from the city.” Carry on, task force.

- In a backed-up court system, former Linfield Professor Daniel Pollack-Pelzner spent relatively little time pursuing his lawsuit against Linfield University alleging unlawful whistleblower retaliation. The lawsuit, filed three months after Linfield fired Pollack-Pelzner in April 2021, has concluded with Linfield’s agreement (through insurance) to pay the professor $1 million in a non-confidential settlement. For employers wanting to bone up on the dos and don’ts of risky employment actions, our online archives contain about 30 stories related to the Pollack-Pelzner case.

All those from just the past four N-R issues, as the high-profile stories just keep coming.

Jeb Bladine can be reached at or 503-687-1223.


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