The Takeaway

Putting Voter Registration on Auto-Pilot

Thursday, March 19, 2015

This week, Oregon became the first state to use Department of Motor Vehicle records to automatically register residents to vote. Now other states are considering doing the same. 

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The Takeaway

Secrets Revealed in the Race for Oregon Governor

Monday, October 20, 2014

Oregonians will vote this November on whether to send their governor back to office for an unprecedented fourth term. 


PRI's The World

The key to some big endangered species crime investigations is a small lab in Oregon

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Trying to figure out where that confiscated rhino horn came from? Is that guitar made from a piece of endangered tropical hardwood? You might find the answers to your questions at the US Fish & Wildlife Service's Forensic Lab in Ashland, Oregon, the only one like it in the world.


Life of the Law

Water Rights

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

When a serious drought hit just months after an Oregon court awarded senior water rights to the Klamath Tribes, the tribe made a ‘call’ for water. The call meant enough water in its rivers and streams to keep the Upper Klamath Lake full,


The Takeaway

Discovering Mount Hood's Glacial Caves

Tuesday, October 08, 2013

There's a world that exists exclusively below the ice, extending thousands of feet in elevation on Mount Hood in Oregon—it's a world  ade up of three recently discovered glacial caves. Amelia Templeton is a reporter for Oregon Public Broadcasting's Earthfix Project. She describes her descent into Mount Hood's glacial caves and OPB's multimedia project, "Thin Ice: Exploring Mount Hood's Glacier Caves."


The Takeaway

Oregon Rep. Kurt Schrader Argues Against U.S. Action in Syria

Thursday, September 05, 2013

Yesterday afternoon, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved a resolution on military action in Syria. Before the Senate Committee vote, Democratic Congressman Kurt Schrader of Oregon’s 5th Congressional District came out in opposition of unilateral U.S. action against Syria. Congressman Schrader joins us from Canby, OR to discuss his views on the issue.

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The Takeaway

Oregon Leading the Way on Implementation of Affordable Care Act

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Just a couple of years ago, the health care budget situation in Oregon was bleak. Oregon was facing a $2 billion deficit in its Medicaid program. The Obama administration cut a deal with Oregon to bail them out, but Oregon had to keep its Medicaid spending growth rate 2 percent lower than the rest of the country. Since then, Oregon has made great strides in cutting costs while expanding Medicaid programs, and becoming something of a testing ground for the Affordable Care Act.

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New Sounds

World-Jazz Guitar Music

Sunday, April 07, 2013

There’s new music from the California Guitar Trio on this New Sounds show, from their recent release, “Andromeda,” which has the talented and crafty guitarists playing with effects, keyboard textures, and a guest musician – Tony Levin of King Crimson.  We’ll hear their Reichian “Improv 8: Layered Circulation” and possibly some fingerstylin’ middle-eastern influenced tunes as well.


The Takeaway

State Flags All Look the Same — Let's Update Them

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Matt Norquist, a truck driver from Gresham, Oregon, wants to see his state flag changed. It's simply in need of an update, he says, and he has a few ideas of how to do it.

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Transportation Nation

Bus Rapid Transit Looks Set for Growth in Oregon

Monday, January 28, 2013

Hayden Bridge Station on Eugene, Oregon's EMX bus rapid transit system.  (Photo CC by Flickr user Slideshow Bruce)

Portland has been a national leader in building light rail, but the transit-friendly city is considering buses as the next round of expansion. Portland is seriously considering bus rapid transit for two high-capacity transit corridors it is planning to expand. Nearby, Eugene is adding to its existing BRT lines, rankling some in the community.

OPB has a pair of stories laying out the potential boom in BRT building. Rob Manning reports on Portland where the decision seems to be coming down to light rail vs bus rapid transit:

There are two high priority corridors in Portland’s long-term transit plan. BRT is on the table, for discussion, in both of them...

Elissa Gertler, a deputy director at the Metro regional government, and the supervisor of the two corridor planning efforts, says there’s one big reason that interest in bus rapid transit may be overtaking light rail: "First and foremost, light rail is expensive. A big capital investment costs a lot of money, and partnership with the federal government in how to fund that has diminished over time, as we’ve expanded our system in this region.”

Bus rapid transit, as pictured above, is a cheaper alternative to light rail lines. Buses are given a dedicated lane to ensure traffic-free travel. Passengers pay before boarding -- similar to subway use -- to speed loading and unloading times. The scheme has proved effective and popular in cities from Curitiba, to Mexico City, to Cleveland.

As has happened in other cities, BRT's flexibility can lead to partial implementation with a kind of BRT-lite.  Something that is an option on the table in Portland. Again from Manning's report:

Transit consultant Jarret Walker says the ideal is to run the bus like a light rail train. Easier said than done in the two corridors Portland is studying.

"You have stretches there, where there’s just so much width," Walker says. "There’s only so much space in the road. And in those places, it doesn’t really matter if you’re building light rail or Bus Rapid Transit, the real question will be: Where do you find a path?"

Standing at 82nd Avenue and Division, Metro’s Elissa Gertler says planners are starting with a focus on where people are traveling. This Division corridor includes multiple college campuses. She says administrators see a value in getting their students out of their cars.

"We have heard them say, 'We don’t want to be a sea of parking lots, we don’t want to have to just building parking. We want to invest in educational space, and serving our students,' ” Gertler says.

Oregon knows how to do bus rapid transit as well as any state in the country. According to rankings by BRT proponents at the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy, the Eugene BRT system is the second best in the nation, after Cleveland's. Both cities received a "bronze" rating by ITDP compared to "gold" in Bogota and Guangzhou.

The EmX buses in Lane County around Eugene carry 10,000 riders each weekday through dedicated lanes or with "signal priority," traffic lights that change to green when the buses approach.

A new 4.4 mile proposed extension is drawing opposition, according to this report from OPB's Amanda Peacher.

Kilcoin says the EmX extension will help connect West Eugene residents to downtown, and will improve traffic congestion. The project would widen the road in some places. LTD is also planning a number of other improvements, like two pedestrian bridges, new sidewalks, and an additional bike lane. That's in part why the price tag is so high-- all this is estimated to cost $95.6 million.

And that's the main complaint from groups like Our Money, Our Transit. Along 11th Avenue, opponents of the extension have lined the road with signs that read "No Build" with a picture of the big green bus crossed out.

"It's a really poor use of public funds." Roy Benson owns the Tire Factory, an automotive store along the planned route. As a business owner, he doesn't see any benefits of the new line. "I'll probably never have anybody come here on the bus, and then buy four tires and get back on the bus to go home," Benson says.

Peacher cites other opposition, as well as support from transit riders as is to be expected.The plan is going forward, currently in the design phase with a completion date of 2017 if all goes according to plan.

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New Sounds

World-Jazz Guitar Music

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

There’s new music from the California Guitar Trio on this New Sounds show, from their recent release, “Andromeda,” which has the talented and crafty guitarists playing with effects, keyboard textures, and a guest musician – Tony Levin of King Crimson.  We’ll hear their Reichian “Improv 8: Layered Circulation” and possibly some fingerstylin’ middle-eastern influenced tunes as well. 


It's A Free Country ®

Rep. David Wu Formally Resigns

Thursday, August 04, 2011

Oregonian Representative David Wu formally announced Wednesday that he is resigning from Congress.


The Takeaway

'How to Die in Oregon': New Documentary Explores Assisted Suicide

Thursday, May 26, 2011

The documentary "How to Die in Oregon" premieres tonight on HBO. The film follows a woman named Cody Curtis as she suffers from liver cancer and, ultimately, makes the decision to end her life. It’s a difficult subject. Yet critics have described this documentary as “uplifting” and even “life-affirming.” Peter Richardson is the director of "How to Die in Oregon." He and Stan Curtis, the husband of the woman portrayed in the film, talk about the process of making the film and why the story needed to be told.

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WQXR Features

In Oregon, the Sweet Sounds of Crime Reduction

Monday, February 28, 2011

Classical music soothes the savage breast -- at least that's the hope of law enforcement officials in Portland, OR. A new bill now in committee seeks to install classical music speakers in some of the city's most troubled transportation hubs.

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Jazz Looks East

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Pop pushed world music to the fore - but jazzers like Charles Lloyd got there first.

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The Takeaway

BCS Championship: Auburn Tigers Beat Oregon Ducks, NBA: Carmelo Anthony Dreams of Change

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The title of national champions lay on the line at the BCS Championship last night. The Auburn Tigers completed their undefeated season with a 22-19 victory over the Oregon Ducks with a dramatic field goal by Wes Byrum. The Takeaway's sports contributor, Ibrahim Abdul-Matin, recaps the exciting game. 


New Sounds

World-Jazz Guitar Music

Monday, December 13, 2010

There’s new music from the California Guitar Trio on this New Sounds show, from their recent release, “Andromeda,” which has the talented and crafty guitarists playing with effects, keyboard textures, and a guest musician – Tony Levin of King Crimson.  We’ll hear their Reichian “Improv 8: Layered Circulation” and possibly some fingerstylin’ middle-eastern influenced tunes as well.  Also, there’s world-jazzy yet rootsy music from a collaborative record by bass player Dave Holland and the veteran flamenco guitarist Pepe Habichuela.  Plus, older music from Ralph Towner and the band Oregon and more.


Transportation Nation

TN Moving Stories: Student Athletes WON'T have to pay up, self-service airport scanners, and cell service to hit NYC subways.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Oregon transit takes away parking spaces from crowded park and ride garage -- and puts in 74 biking parking spots.  Look at it this way, officials say:  you haven't lost eight spots --you've gained 74 bike spots!  (Oregon live)

Los Angeles Schools Chief, in reversal, says school athletes will NOT have to pay $24 towards transportation to sporting events.  He'll find "other financial options" to foot the $650,000 bill.  Good luck! (Los Angeles Times)

LaHood, Wisconisin Governor Doyle, get ready for "big announcement" on High Speed Rail Thursday. (Business Week).

The phone will be ringing off the hook: New York subway tunnels will also get wifi. (New York Daily News)

Self service "subway-style" scanners being tested at Houston airport.  Bloomberg

Suburban Nassau county sues NYC MTA for bus funding.  MTA says Nassau has been a deadbeat for a decade, Nassau says too bad, we're broke!  Buses could go private. (Long Island Press)

And crosswalks lights from around the world art installation graces Lower Manhattan construction zone:  (


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Voters Cast Primary Ballots Today

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Voters cast ballots in primary elections in Pennsylvania, Arkansas and Kentucky today.


The Takeaway

Rep. Blumenauer On Health Care Reform, Stimulus and Bikes

Monday, November 02, 2009

We speak with Democratic Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) about health care reform, how his proposal to provide "counseling for patients about end-of-life care" became the much-ballyhooed "death panels" meme, the prospect of a second stimulus package and the power of bicycles. (click through for the full interview transcript.)

Watch a video from StreetFilms of Congressman Blumenauer talking about bicycle-friendly Portland.

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