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Super job, people

Baker City Editorial Board

Some super committee, huh?

Rarely has an entity been so inaptly named as the 12-member bipartisan panel tasked with trimming at least $1.2 trillion from the federal budget over the next decade.

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Pity poor Big Tobacco


Oh, those poor tobacco companies.

The gall of the U.S. Food and Drug and Administration, to mandate that cigarette packs include color photographs showing diseased lungs and other effects of smoking.

Beastly.

Fortunately for beleaguered Big Tobacco, it has at least one federal judge on its side.

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Reminder needed


The Penn State University child sex abuse story is awful.

Jerry Sandusky, a former longtime assistant to legendary Penn State football coach Joe Paterno, is accused of abusing eight pre-teen boys over 15 years.

Because crimes allegedly continued even after several Penn State officials — Paterno among them — were notified about concerns regarding Sandusky’s activities, the situation has highlighted differences in state and federal laws known collectively as “mandatory reporting” statutes.

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City's tough, but right, choice


The Baker City Council had a tough choice to make last week regarding parking on Resort Street.

We agree with the four councilors — the slimmest majority possible on the seven-member Council — who opted for parallel parking on both sides of Resort between Auburn Avenue and Campbell Street.

The new parking set up, which will take effect in either 2012 or 2013 when the street is rebuilt, represents a change from the current situation.

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Reconsider cougar hunting

Oregon’s largest hunters group is kicking around the idea of asking voters to overturn the ban on using dogs to hunt cougars.

We share the Oregon Hunters Association’s (OHA) curiosity on the matter, and we hope voters get that chance.

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The story behind the crypto mistake


We messed up.

Several times during the past 18 months we have reported, in news stories, editorials and columns, that tests of Baker City’s drinking water were negative for cryptosporidium, a parasite that can cause diarrhea and vomiting.

We were wrong.

In fact, three of the 24 water samples taken from April 2010 through March 2011 did contain crypto.

The concentrations, fortunately, were too low to pose a health risk to people.

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7 billion and counting


The birth of the baby that brought the human population to 7 billion made the news in a big way this week.

It may be an arbitrary milestone, but it’s certainly a thought-provoking one.

It’s not often, after all, that our species reaches another billion.

But over the past century or so we’ve been climbing to the next threshold a whole lot faster than before.

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Getting it right on guns


The Baker School District has returned to solid legal ground in its effort to restrict who can bring guns and other weapons on school grounds or to school-sponsored events.

Last month the school board was considering a policy written by the Oregon School Boards Association (OSBA).

That policy runs afoul of both state and federal laws because it would prohibit anyone, save for police, from bringing a licensed, concealed handgun to a school.

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Baker City's dilemma


Baker City officials have a dilemma on their hands.

One source is a parasite, cryptosporidium, that can leave you suffering from diarrhea and nausea if it gets into your stomach.

The other source is perhaps even more insidious: the federal government.

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What's recycling cost?


For most Baker City residents, recycling is hardly the most onerous task on their agenda.

But it could be a lot easier.

As is typical, though, the convenience of leaving recyclables at the curbside along with your trash comes at a cost.

We don’t know how high the cost would be.

But we should.

To that end, we urge the City Council to ask Baker Sanitary Service for an updated estimated cost to offer curbside recycling to its customers.

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