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News Releases
Clark County Finance Committee meeting scheduled for Aug. 11 - 08/10/20

Vancouver, Wash. – The Clark County Finance Committee is scheduled to meet at 9:30 am Tuesday, Aug. 11, 2020. 

Due to the COVID-19 emergency, and in support of Washington State’s extended Stay Home, Stay Healthy order, the meeting will be held via WebEx conference call.  

Here is the WebEx information for the meeting: 

  • clarkwa.Webex.com
  • To dial-in: (408) 418-9388
  • Access code: 146 263 0267
  • Password: yMF4pHNqj24 

The agenda includes discussion of the Second-Quarter 2020 County Finance Report.

Public Health issues danger advisory for Vancouver Lake due to elevated toxin levels - 08/06/20

Vancouver, Wash. – Clark County Public Health is upgrading its advisory at Vancouver Lake to danger after test results revealed elevated levels of cyanotoxins in the water. The cyanobacteria bloom continues to cover most of the lake.

Results from water samples taken from Vancouver Lake on Monday revealed cyanotoxins above the threshold levels recommended by the Washington State Department of Health. Given the elevated toxin levels and the extensive cyanobacteria bloom at the lake, Public Health is upgrading its current advisory to danger and advising against all recreation on the lake.

Danger signs are being posted at the swim beach and other public access points to the lake. Public Health is advising against all recreating on the lake, including swimming, kayaking, paddle boarding, canoeing and water skiing, and pets should be kept out of the water. Public Health is also advising against fishing at Vancouver Lake.

The warning advisory at Lacamas Lake remains in place, as water samples continue to show elevated toxin levels. Public Health is advising people to avoid direct contact with all water at Lacamas Lake.

Water samples from Round Lake show toxin levels below threshold levels, but the algae bloom is still present at the lake. As a result, Public Health is downgrading that advisory to caution. People should avoid areas of scum in the water.

As long as algae are present, toxin levels could increase as conditions at the lakes change. Public Health will continue to monitor the algae blooms at the lakes and, as long as the blooms are present, will take weekly water samples to test toxin levels. Signs will be updated as conditions change.

Blooms of cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, can pose a significant health risk if the cyanobacteria or toxins are ingested, inhaled or come into contact with skin. Inhaled bacteria or toxins can cause wheezing, coughing, chest tightness and shortness of breath. Skin contact can lead to rash, itching, blisters and eye irritation.

If water with cyanotoxins is accidentally swallowed, symptoms can include abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, numbness of the lips, tingling in fingers and toes, and dizziness. The toxins can be fatal to pets that drink the water.

Additional information about blue-green algae and current advisories are posted on the Public Health public beach website. To report algae blooms in other bodies of water, visit the Public Health website.

Lane closures coming to Highway 99, Northeast 99th Street for intersection improvements - 07/31/20

Vancouver, Wash. – Regular drivers along the intersection of Northeast 99th Street and Highway 99 can expect intermittent lane closures, beginning Monday, Aug. 3.

Due to high traffic volumes and the complexity of the contracted work, drivers and pedestrians can expect the following impacts during construction:

  • Single-lane closures with delays on Highway 99 and Northeast 99th Street between the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.
  • Complete and partial road closures on westbound Northeast 99th Street for up to a total of 16 days. These closures are anticipated to occur in mid-October.
  • Single-lane closures on Highway 99 southbound.
  • Complete closure of the Highway 99 southbound right-turn lane for the duration of construction.
  • Other lanes may be closed as needed.

Clark County Public Works’ contractor, Nutter Corporation of Vancouver, Wash., will widen lanes on this heavily traveled corridor, allowing drivers to more easily navigate turning movements. This work also includes filling in gaps in the existing bicycle lanes on Highway 99 and building a bicycle lane on Northeast 99th Street, from Highway 99 west to Northeast 13th Avenue. The combination of heavy traffic, a skewed intersection, narrow lanes and tight turning radius has created congestion problems and safety concerns.

All contracted work is expected to be complete in Nov. 2020.

Stay up-to-date with the latest traffic impacts by visiting our website: https://www.clark.wa.gov/public-works/highway-99-corridor-improvements. You can also find real-time information on the Public Works Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts, and on NextDoor.

 

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Clark County launches interactive, virtual Natural Garden Tour - 07/27/20

Vancouver, Wash. – Clark County residents can explore 15 local gardens maintained using earth-friendly techniques and hear from the host gardeners during this year’s Natural Garden Tour. But rather than driving to properties across the county, residents can now experience the annual celebration of natural gardening without ever leaving their homes. 

The 15th annual Natural Garden Tour is taking place in an interactive, virtual format this year, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The tour incorporates videos and photos of the properties, as well as interviews with local gardeners, into an innovative story map format. The new format allows visitors to view features, such as lawn alternatives, organic produce or pollinator habitat, as interactive map layers between this year’s gardens.

The tour launched today and is available on the Clark County Green Neighbors’ website. Virtual visitors can move at their own pace through the tour and get tips and ideas for incorporating natural gardening features into their own yards. The annual tour is a great way for local gardeners to learn how to make their yard a healthy place for pets and children while protecting waterways and wildlife.

This year’s tour features six new and nine returning gardens. Visitors can take a step back in time as they stroll through the grounds of a beautiful 1-acre vintage-themed garden, and get inspired as they wander along a 450-foot pollinator hedgerow that includes 1,500 native plans for resident honeybees.

After visiting local gardens, tour participants who complete a short quiz about natural gardening will be entered to win prizes.

Participants of the 2019 Natural Garden Tour made more than 2,000 visits to the 12 featured gardens.

For more information about the Natural Garden Tour and other environmentally conscious activities, visit the Clark County Green Neighbors website.  

County, partner agencies hold listening sessions on systemic racism - 07/27/20

Vancouver, Wash. – The Clark County Council and partner agencies YWCA Clark County, NAACP Vancouver, SW WA LULAC, and Clark County Volunteer Lawyers Program have scheduled three listening sessions to learn about how systemic racism has impacted residents of Clark County.

These sessions will be a part of informing the county’s response to systemic racism and representing first steps in the county’s effort to take action surrounding racial justice, systems inequities and structural racism in Clark County.

Session details are as follows:

  • Session 1: Friday, July 31, 6-8 pm
    • Representatives from the four partner agencies will share information and background on the impacts of systemic racism in Clark County as it pertains to their organizations. The public is invited to watch and listen to this moderated series of presentations.
  • Session 2: Wednesday, Aug. 12, 6-8 pm
    • Members of the public are invited for a moderated opportunity to share their experiences and answer the question, "How has systemic racism in Clark County impacted you?" Speakers will be asked to follow a three-minute time limit. This listening session will be recorded and will become a part of the public record.
  • Session 3: Wednesday, Aug. 26, 6-8 pm
    • Members of the public who would prefer to share their experiences privately are invited for a moderated opportunity to answer the question, "How has systemic racism in Clark County impacted you?" Speakers will be asked to follow a three-minute time limit. This meeting will not be recorded, and a summary without identifying details will be provided afterward for the public record.

Anyone interested in registering to attend the sessions as a viewer, or signing up to speak at Session 2 or Session 3 may do so at the following links:

Session 1: https://tinyurl.com/y343tkz3

Session 2: https://tinyurl.com/yyyj4s8j

Session 3: https://tinyurl.com/yydpeuhc

Clark Vancouver TV will livestream Sessions 1 and 2 on www.CVTV.org and cable channel 23. Session 3 will not be recorded. A summary of Session 3 without identifying details will be made available at a later date. Spanish language and ASL interpretation will be available.

Information on the sessions is available on the county’s website at www.clark.wa.gov/councilors/listening-sessions.

Protect yourself, others from heat-related illness during hot weather - 07/25/20

Vancouver, Wash. – Public Health officials are urging residents to take precautions to prevent heat-related illnesses during the upcoming hot weather.

The extreme temperatures can create a risk to health and safety.

“Elderly people and young children are especially vulnerable during intense heat,” said Dr. Alan Melnick, Clark County health officer. “We encourage everyone to avoid or limit physical activity outdoors, take shelter in air-conditioned buildings and drink plenty of fluids.”

Here are some additional steps to take to prevent heat-related illness:

  • Drink more water and other nonalcoholic fluids, regardless of your activity level.
  • Limit intake of drinks with caffeine, alcohol or lots of sugar.
  • Stay indoors, in an air-conditioned location, as much as possible.
  • Never leave a person, especially a young child, or a pet in a parked vehicle. Temperatures can rise rapidly in parked vehicles, even with the windows rolled down.
  • Fans will not prevent heat-related illness. Cool off in the shower or bath or move to an air-conditioned place.
  • Wear lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothes.

If you need to be outside, take these precautions:

  • Limit outdoor activity to morning and evening hours when temperatures are cooler and drink two to four glasses of nonalcoholic fluids each hour.
  • Check on co-workers while working outdoors.
  • Rest often in shady areas.
  • Wear a brimmed hat and sunglasses; apply sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher.

Knowing the signs of heat illness is important. Heat stroke can cause death or permanent disability if emergency treatment is not provided.

Warning signs of heat stroke include body temperature above 103 degrees; red, hot and dry skin (no sweating); rapid pulse; throbbing headache; nausea; dizziness; and confusion.

If you see any of these signs, call 911. Place the victim in a bath or cool shower or spray the person with cool water from a garden hose. Do not give the person fluids to drink.

Less severe heat-related illnesses include heat exhaustion and muscle cramps. Signs are heavy sweating, paleness, weakness, headache and vomiting. Drink nonalcoholic, cool beverages. Seek medical attention if symptoms worsen or last more than an hour.