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Meteorologist Marisa Woloszyn’s Forecast Discussion:

High pressure will be in control this week. Skies will be mostly sunny inland with high temperatures in the low 90s inland and mid to upper 60s along the coast. We’ll have a chance for thunderstorms in the Cascades through Monday, with storms also possible in the Umpqua Basin Thursday through Saturday.

Have a wonderful Wednesday!
~ Meteorologist Marisa Woloszyn

7-29 Ethiopia AthleteEUGENE, Ore. — The fourth Ethiopian athlete who went missing at the the World Junior Track and Field Championships is safe.

The University of Oregon Police Department says it found Zeyituna Mohammed in Federal Way, Washington. She was at the residence of an acquaintance.

She went missing with three other teammates. They were found in Beaverton. UOPD says all of the missing persons cases are now closed.

Officers say their only interest was making sure the athletes were safe. All four had a valid visa.

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High pressure is hanging on over the West keeping us warm and dry. The high is spinning up warm unstable air from the Desert Southwest. That is keeping our inland temperatures warmer than normal and sparking thunderstorms along the Cascades and into Central and Eastern Oregon.

Wednesday will be very warm again with temperatures topping out in the low 90′s inland and mid 60′s along the coast. Few thunderstorms expected except for an isolated one along the Cascade Ridge. Thursday our chances for thunderstorms return and will last through the weekend.

The coast will remain cool all the way through the weekend with high temperatures in the mid to upper 60′s. Each morning will start with low cloud cover that burns off to partly cloudy to mostly sunny skies by afternoon.

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JUNCTION CITY, Ore. — The first case of rabies so far this year in Lane County has been confirmed.

Lane County Public Health says a fox found near a residence in Junction City tested positive for rabies. It is the first animal to test positive for rabies in Oregon this year.

The fox was brought to a wildlife center in Corvallis on Friday. The Oregon State University Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory tested for rabies and says the results came back positive. The Centers for Disease Control is currently testing to see which strain of rabies the fox had, but will likely not know the results until the end of the week. The fox was euthanized. 

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife believes that this is an isolated case and that the fox came in contact with a rabid bat.

KEZI 9 News spoke with a Corvallis veterinarian, who says rabies is a lethal virus that affects the neurological system in mammals.

“There have been a few reported cases of people and animals surviving rabies, but it is very, very rare,” said Steve Amsberry, the owner of West Hills Animal Hospital and the President of the Oregon Veterinary Medical Association.

Amsberry says despite the rabid fox case in Lane County, he says nobody should panic.

“Rabies is very rare, but there are really simple things to do such as the vaccination of pets and decrease your exposure to wildlife that is acting abnormal in any way.”

He says rabies is contracted through saliva.

“So if there is a bite wound, that bite wound needs to be cleaned out with soap and water as soon as possible and you need to contact your veterinarian.”

This is the first report of a rabid fox in Lane County since the 1960s.

“Don’t feed wild animals,” Amsberry said. “You don’t want to encourage them to be around in your living space because you just don’t know. So an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

Rabies symptoms in wildlife, particularly foxes and raccoons, include lethargy, walking in circles, convulsions, aggressiveness, excessive drooling of saliva, and showing no fear of humans.

However, according to the ODFW, a common stereotype of an animal with rabies is vicious and snarls like the dog in the movie “Old Yeller.” However, the ODFW says an animal with rabies is dying and is more likely to curl up in a ball before it goes into a coma. But that does not mean precautions should not be taken if anything unusual is noticed.

“Any animal that appears to have abnormal behavior, especially a wild animal that’s out during the day – just don’t go there,” Amsberry said. “Don’t touch them; don’t go near them.”

Wildlife experts do not think people should be concerned about the rabid fox case, but if anyone sees a sick animal in the wild, call the nearest ODFW office to respond.

ANAHEIM, Calif. — A Cottage Grove boy is celebrating his 7th birthday at the happiest place on earth.

Doctors diagnosed Trenton Nowak with an aggressive brain tumor and gave him three to six months to live.

His family found the perfect way to give him a great birthday, by sending him to Disneyland.

They say he’s having a great time and they’re so thankful for all the support from the community.

If you’d like to help, click here to see Trenton’s donations page.

7-29 springfield library picSPRINGFIELD, Ore. — Good news for book lovers in Springfield–the city’s library is leaving its doors open longer.

City leaders announced Tuesday they’ll add four hours to the library’s schedule each week. Instead of opening at noon on Fridays and Saturdays, it’ll open at 10 a.m.

Leaders say hundreds of people responded to a survey and it became clear how important the library is to the city.

“All members of the community benefit from access to a public library whether they’re looking for work, or looking for recreation or helping their children succeed in school and increased hours help all those things happen in this community,” said Rob Everett, Springfield Library director. “Currently we don’t open until noon on Friday and Saturday, and every morning on Friday and Saturday the doors start rattling at 10, so people want increased access to their library.”

Springfield Mayor Christine Lundberg said the library is a huge asset to the community, and it’s wonderful they’re able to add the hours. The new hours start August 15.

Benton County Fair quiltCORVALLIS, Ore. — The Benton County Fair kicks off Wednesday, and organizers have been busy making sure they’re good to go.

It’s the 101st annual fair, and this year they’re celebrating with a community quilt.

Last year members of the community started making quilt blocks to commemorate the first century of the fair.

The entire quilt will be unveiled for the first time Wednesday.

“At the 2113 fair, when they unveil it, it will be back up in another 100 years and they’ll be displaying that quilt. And I hope to see you there!” said Lonny Wunder, fairgrounds manager.

The fair happens Wednesday through Saturday. And for the first time, all kids under the age of 18 are free every day.

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EUGENE, Ore. — Some businesses in Eugene say they’re ready to make adjustments, now that the city has passed a controversial sick leave ordinance.

Monday night’s vote comes after months of talks and comments from a divided community.

The ordinance requires employers to provide workers with one hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked.

Employees say it’s necessary so they don’t have to choose between paying the bills or going to work sick.

But, some businesses say the ordinance goes over their heads, and business will suffer.

Mayor Kitty Piercy says both sides have had a voice on the matter.

“We had a task force that had people who were for it and people who were against it and a lot of businesses. And they all got to bring up all their issues because that was the whole purpose of the task force, tell us all the things you’re concerned about,” said Mayor Kitty Piercy.

Lane County recently passed its own ordinance exempting county employees from the ordinance.

Monday night the council amended its version, exempting governmental agencies including Lane County, potentially avoiding a legal battle.

Local businesses will have about a year to make adjustments before the ordinance takes effect. The law won’t go into effect until July 2015.

Several local business owners told KEZI 9 News that this could hurt them and they would have preferred the ordinance didn’t pass.

Tech company Concentric Sky says the new law could pose a challenge.

The company is known for innovation, creativity, and its presence for technology solutions.

“We have about 45 employees currently,” said Lisa Bruckner, Concentric Sky Chief Operating Officer.

Bruckner says, as an employer, their goal is to create an interesting, secure and flexible work environment.

“Most of them are hourly so they can work the hours they want, and we try to work around their personal lives because we think having a good personal life is part of being a happy employee,” Bruckner said.

They offer health insurance packages along with paid time off. And with the new sick leave ordinance passed in Eugene, Concentric Sky employees–and at businesses in town–will get one hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked. The total amount of sick time caps out at 40 hours.

“It’s kind of a two-sided coin. On the one side, we’re happy that employees have the opportunity to be eligible for more benefits, and we like to give employees as many benefits as possible,” Bruckner said.

But like several local business owners, there are questions and concerns.

“On the other side of the coin, where does the money come from to pay for the benefits? Payroll and fringe benefits are usually one of the largest expenses businesses have to cover,” Bruckner said.

Bruckner and several business owners say they’re interested to see how this law plays out.

“It’s an easy thing to pass, but the long-term repercussions and effects that it has are not often seen until later. I’m hopeful that it doesn’t negatively affect too many small businesses, meaning they have to raise their rates in order to accommodate this law, which could harm the economy potentially,” Bruckner said.

Other business owners told KEZI 9 News they’re concerned about how they’ll get the money to cover paid sick leave and if they’d have to hire less people because of it.

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SPRINGFIELD, Ore. — A former Duck will be taking the lead on a Simpsons mural coming to Springfield.

The mural will be painted on the side of the Emerald Art Center at the corner of Fifth and Main streets.

Coordinators chose the spot because of Springfield’s close ties to The Simpsons.

They say they reviewed proposals from all over the country before selecting Old City Artists for the job. It’s owned by Erik Nicolaisen, a Portland native and University of Oregon grad. He played at Autzen Stadium as an Oregon Duck from 1998-2000. The company is known for work with Nike, Disney and more.

The mural is expected to be completed in September.

7-79 CAMERON WILLIAMSCRESWELL, Ore. — A man barricaded himself in a room and threatened guests at a Creswell motel Monday night, the Lane County Sheriff’s Office said.

William Cameron was arrested by the Lane County Sheriff’s Office at Super 8 Motel in Creswell.

He had barricaded himself in a hotel room after destroying hotel property and threatening he had explosives.

The motel was evacuated for guests’ safety.

Cameron surrendered and was found to be under the influenced of methamphetamine, which officials also found in his room.

He is lodged at the Lane County Jail. He faces multiple charges including disorderly conduct and criminal mischief.

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