The American Soybean Association (ASA) expresses appreciation to the U.S. House of Representatives for passage today of H.R. 4213, by a 215-204 margin. ASA supports the provisions in H.R. 4213 that extend the biodiesel tax incentive through December 31, 2010, retroactive to January 1, 2010. The cost of the biodiesel tax credit extension is fully offset in the bill. Extension of the biodiesel tax credit is a top priority for ASA.”ASA urges the Senate to also pass H.R. 4213 when they return from the Memorial Day recess, so that it can be sent to the President, and the biodiesel tax credit can be reinstated,” said ASA President Rob Joslin, a soybean producer from Sidney, Ohio. “Extension of the biodiesel tax credit is long overdue and has been continually held up for reasons unrelated to biodiesel.”Biodiesel has provided a significant market opportunity for U.S. soybean farmers, as well as jobs and economic development for rural communities. Biodiesel is one of the cleanest burning biofuels currently used in commercial markets. Biodiesel is a renewable and sustainable energy source that can play a significant role in our national efforts to increase our energy security and improve our environmental footprint. The biodiesel industry is creating valuable green jobs and making a positive contribution to the economy.To press the issue with Members of the U.S. Senate, ASA has renewed the nationwide Action Alert to its members and supporters asking them to contact their Senators to urge them to pass the biodiesel tax credit extension immediately upon their return from the Memorial Day recess.”I strongly encourage all soybean farmers to contact their Senators directly over the next week, in-person, via phone and email, to explain the need for the Senate to extend the biodiesel tax incentive,” Joslin said. “The biodiesel tax incentive expired on December 31, 2009, and since that time, biodiesel production and consumption has dramatically declined, biodiesel production facilities have closed, and thousands of biodiesel industry workers have lost their jobs.”Biodiesel has the best energy balance, the best greenhouse gas reduction, and is the only advanced biofuel currently in the commercial marketplace. Biodiesel is a homegrown renewable fuel and an excellent way for America’s soybean growers to boost U.S. energy security, promote economic development and improve the environment.
Girls at Proximos Pasos school in Guatemala where “The Youth We Feed Can Lead” project will take place. The school is for 135 girls that were not allowed into the public school system for various reasons. Photo Credit: WSFIf you haven’t already heard, the World Soy Foundation (WSF) has a new project in the works called “The Youth We Feed Can Lead.” This project will empower students we already serve to be agents of change in their schools and families. We will combine low-cost video production training and equipment with nutrition education for students who can then share their story.We’ve launched a campaign to make this project possible. We have a goal of raising $2,500 by May 31and an anonymous donor has generously offered to MATCH any funds we raise during this time. Visit our campaign page HERE to learn more about the project and help us reach our goal of $2,500!BONUS: for any donation $50 or more, you’ll receive a one-of-a-kind, handmade gift from Guatemala! Consider donating and giving nourishment, education and empowerment to kids!
A Ridgefield landowner says she has accepted — reluctantly — a $30,000 settlement from the state, ending a property damage dispute that dates back to 2009.Caroll Stuart-Luna made her decision late Friday, the last day the offer remained on the table.“It was take-it-or-leave-it,” said Stuart-Luna, 77.The dispute stems from a Washington State Department of Transportation project to expand and improve the Interstate 5 interchange at Highway 501, about three-quarters of a mile to the north in Ridgefield. Shortly after the work began in fall 2009, a well house on Stuart-Luna’s property was destroyed as crews cleared the area around the freeway.A survey conducted before the project began showed the well entirely on public land, straddling city of Ridgefield property and state right-of-way. But after the question was raised, a second survey determined the well sat on Stuart-Luna’s property, as well.The state offered $30,000 as compensation, which officials said was a high-end estimate for the structure. Stuart-Luna had contended damage extended beyond the well, and said she spent more than that amount simply making her case to the state.Ultimately, she decided that that was an argument she couldn’t win, Stuart-Luna said Friday.The property is 1.29 acres wedged between South Timm Road and I-5 in Ridgefield. It is unoccupied and largely undeveloped, with only an old, uninhabitable storage building on site. The property’s value was assessed at $82,722 in 2010, according to county records.Stuart-Luna, 77, lives in Hawaii but has ties to Southwest Washington. She bought the Ridgefield property in the late 1980s as an investment, and said she’s not sure what she’ll do with it.
TUALATIN, Ore. — Nate McMillan started out as a player, then became a coach, and on Monday, showed interest in a new profession: Journalist.Well, maybe that’s a stretch — but he certainly seemed to enjoy the interviewing part.With the Trail Blazers having lost three of their past four while holding an underachieving record of 15-13, questions regarding how McMillan distributes his minutes have become more and more frequent. Most of them have centered around Raymond Felton, who remains in the starting lineup despite being ranked as the 45th most efficient point guard in the league.But when the subject of Nicolas Batum possibly getting more playing time arose, that’s when McMillan morphed into a reporter.“There we go,” said McMillan, whose team will host the Wizards on Tuesday.”You guys want to change the point guard, and now you want to get Nic minutes.”Or use him in a different way? the reporter said.“What other way can we use him?” responded McMillan.Give him more minutes? answered the reporter.“He was on the floor at the end of the game. He’s there. OK, so answer that for me. Respond to that.”Play him more at the 2, chimed in another journalist.“He was at the 2,” McMillan said. “You’re at the 2 — make plays. You’re in there at the most crucial part of the game — make plays! More minutes doesn’t equal winning.”Well, that’s up for debate. The Blazers are 1-9 this year in games decided by five points or less. That can partly be attributed to Portland’s inability to finish, but one could argue that if certain players were on the court more often than others, some of these games wouldn’t be so close in the first place.Batum is averaging nearly seven fewer minutes than Wesley Matthews, but is shooting 3 percent better from the field and 6.5 percent better from 3-point distance while averaging 12.2 points to Matthews’ 12.5.
Hulda Klager came to the U.S. from Germany in 1865. The family moved to the Woodland farm in 1877 when she was 13. Apples were a key crop.By 1905, she was working with lilacs. By 1910, she had 14 new varieties. After 10 years, she hosted an open house during the spring bloom.Virtually all of her work was destroyed by the great flood of 1948. At the age of 83, she began restoring the garden, and within two years she was able to resume her open house.She died in 1960. The house and grounds are maintained by the Hulda Klager Lilac Society.Ruth Wendt of the Hulda Klager Lilac Society recommends:Moskvy, a pink-budded variety with a double white bloom.Frank Klager, a dark purple.Lavender Lady.Paul Thirion, a magenta double bloom.WOODLAND — They came from as far away as Seattle and Oklahoma on Sunday to see gorgeous blooming lilacs in a vintage setting under sunny skies.Lilac Days are here again on the homestead of Hulda Klager, the original lilac lady.More than 1,700 people visited the 4-acre home and gardens over the weekend.“We are doing well with sales,” said Karen Ward, chair of the garden. She’s been working seven hours a day every day for the past six weeks with other volunteers to get the garden just so. And is it appreciated?“They (visitors) love it,” she said of the garden and Victorian farmhouse stocked with antiques and vintage hats. “Lots of people haven’t been here before. They’re just amazed at how beautiful it is.”
Business name: Shorty’s Garden and Home.Owner and general manager: Colin Mahoney.Address: 10006 S.E. Mill Plain Blvd., Vancouver and 705 N.E. 199th St., Ridgefield.o Each week, The Columbian offers a brief snapshot of an interesting Clark County business. Send ideas to Mary Ricks: email@example.com; fax 360-735-4598; phone 360-735-4550.What the business does: Shorty’s is a locally owned and operated, multilocation retail garden center company. It offers a broad array of flowers and soils, pottery, trees and shrubs, and garden treatments and fertilizers. For 42 years, Shorty’s has been independently and family run, focusing on high-quality plant material, solution-based customer service and community involvement. The business is founded on a vision of engaging customers, offering advice and plants suggestions that are appropriate for the Pacific Northwest climate.Steps to build your business as the economy recovers: Colin Mahoney said his nursery is expanding services and selection. He is seeing an increased interest in home care and gardening as homeowners and hobbyists alike take measures to improve their outdoor living spaces, home appearance or favorite flower bed.Greatest challenge: Given the fickle spring weather in the Pacific Northwest, Mahoney has to balance his inventory, timing and offerings to appropriately respond to the “last frost” dates, spring rain and customer interest.Favorite part of the job: Mahoney said he sells products that make people happy. His customers make purchases that are for their personal enjoyment rather than to fulfill a need. Mahoney said it is hard to have a bad day when people are shopping for things they want.
Fuel prices in Vancouver are on the rise again, up by 4 cents this week to top $4 per gallon for regular unleaded after remaining below that level for several weeks, according to AAA Oregon/Idaho. Higher fuel prices here and across the nation indicate demand for fuel as the summer travel season wraps up, AAA said. Prices also reflect climbing crude oil prices as Hurricane Isaac entered the heart of the Gulf of Mexico’s oil and refinery operations, according to NPR. The average price of regular unleaded is $4.39 per gallon in Washington state this week, the fourth-highest price among all 50 states. In Oregon, the average price for a gallon of unleaded also is $4.39. Across the nation, the average price of a gallon of gas is $3.77 per gallon.
Even though she thought her son would be out of the intensive care unit Friday, the mother of Justin Carey says that he had to go back into surgery so doctors could seek the source of a serious infection.Carey, 16, had both of his femurs broken and both femoral arteries severed on June 10 when he was hit by a Nissan Maxima at the intersection of Northeast 82nd Avenue and Northeast 289th Street in rural Clark County. He was waiting for the bus to take him to Battle Ground High School at 7 a.m. when the crash occurred, but he wasn’t taken to the hospital until after a tow-truck driver found him 90 minutes later. The driver of the Nissan, Shaun Johnson, 46, of Vancouver, didn’t tell authorities she had hit someone. Clark County Sheriff’s Office is continuing its investigation and has not made any citations or arrests in the case.With a good initial prognosis from his doctors, who said the 16-year-old boy would likely walk, Carey remains at the intensive care unit at PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center fighting a staph infection. Chumley had been told that Carey may be moved to a less-intensive unit Saturday.“It was supposed to be a good day for us, but it turned out not to be,” said Janette Chumley, Carey’s mom. “He’s just really sick.”
Vancouver police delivered holiday food packages to 25 needy families Friday in the Fruit Valley area.The Vancouver Police Activities League worked with Fruit Valley Elementary School to select the families. The effort was spearheaded by the nonprofit’s new executive director, John Anderson, who took over this summer.Kim Kapp, spokeswoman for the Vancouver Police Department, said this is the first year the nonprofit has done food donations; there was a similar effort around Thanksgiving.The Police Activities League is known for its educational and recreational programs that bring kids and cops together.
What: Public pressing of 8,000 apples at the historic mill. Visitors can take home a jug of cider. $3 donation suggested.Where: Cedar Creek Grist Mill, 43907 N.E. Grist Mill Road, Woodland.When: Starts at 9 a.m. and will continue till all the apples are pressed.Information: cedarcreekgristmill.com/apple_pressing.htm or call 360-225-5832Asked if he needed help hauling a variety apples to his press to make cider, John Emmett instead reached into a bucket and pulled out a small green variety called a Vilberie.“No,” Emmett said, handing the fruit to a curious reporter. “What I want you to do is try this.”After he walked away, she took a bite, puckered her face at the sheer bitterness, then looked for a place to politely dispose of the evidence.Emmett returned, grinning.“Isn’t that awful?” he said with a laugh.Terrible, in fact. Yet when the variety, known as bittersweet, is mixed with other types of apples in a cider, it creates a concoction that has a perfect, refreshing balance that’s smooth and tasty.Emmett uses bittersweet apple types much like vintners will use some bitter grapes to make a more complex, flavorful wine, he said.The retired scientist and his wife grow 75 varieties of apple on their Hockinson property as a hobby. They give the excess to local food banks, and they also hold a few “too many apples” parties every year where neighbors are invited to join them in pressing cider.It may sound like an involved process — and it can be, if you want to get fancy — but pressing cider is actually something you can even do at home with a food processor or juicer, he said.