A Hillsboro police officer believes mindfulness meditation can improve the mental wellbeing of his fellow officers, and is teaching meditation classes across the country. Here’s Melanie Sevcenko, reporting for Marketplace, talking to Lt. Richard Goerling about his Mindful Badge Initiative: “I think in many ways, mindfulness is a foundation for the evolution of policing in America,” Goerling said. “It’s a foundation for us as an institution to take a really fair and deep introspective look at systems that frankly the data shows are oppressive to certain populations, in many cases to people of color.” Lee Dobrowolski, chief of the Hillsboro Police, says such meditation helps officers perform better while also improving their home lives. Here’s Sevcenko again: His department has[…]

MonteAkers.com seems designed to make local state senate candidate Monte Akers unappealing to Republican voters, because it was designed to make him unappealing to Republican voters—and it was funded by a Republican interest group. MonteAkers.com looks like an official candidate website, but it doesn’t really have any content other than an out-of-context quote from a Hillsboro Signal article, used to make Akers, a Republican, look like an ardent supporter of tax increases. Here’s Caleb Diehl, writing for OregonBusiness.com: Infighting in the Republican Party primaries reached a new level a week ago. The Senate Republicans’ Leadership Fund, a political action committee that finances Republican candidates for Senate, set up a website masquerading as the campaign site for Senate candidate Monte Akers, a Republican[…]

Intel spun McAfee off into its own company back in 2016, but the security company still has a big presence here in Hillsboro. They recently moved to a new space, as Mike Rogoway profile in the Oregonian points out: Tech companies make a game of naming their conference rooms. Some name the rooms for favorite beers, or superheroes, or nearby mountains and rivers. At McAfee’s big new office in Hillsboro, the conference rooms are named for the company’s enemies. Stuxnet, Mydoom, Nimda and CodeRed are among the most famous viruses to afflict computers. 375 people work in that office, occasionally using those cleverly named conference rooms. For some reason they have scooters for moving between them. Read the article for[…]

Chas Hudley is my independent journalism buddy here in Washington County: he runs both the Gales Creek Journal and the Banks Post. If you’re at all curious about what happens west of Hillsboro these are must-read publications. This week two opinion articles in those rural papers respond to the Fairgrounds’ main exhibit hall coming down this summer—one against, one for. Both articles are worth reading. Opposing the change was Lyle Spiesschaert, a forth generation farmer, who is concerned the county’s plans to build an event center on the fairgrounds is crowding tradition: In the recent twenty years, the county leadership has methodically and purposefully destroyed buildings, relationships, and either sold or traded land to assure an Event Center for the fairgrounds.[…]

The Fairground’s Main Exhibit Hall will be taken down, Washington County announced today on their website: The Washington County Board of Commissioners approved a plan today to close and remove the 66-year-old Main Exhibit Hall on the fairgrounds in Hillsboro due to a “severe life safety hazard” identified in a recent structural report by Scott Edwards Architecture. The structural issues included concerns about each building’s risk of losing stability during a significant earthquake, snow event, windstorm or, in the case of the Main Exhibit Hall, even holding up its own roof. The idea is for the building to be completely gone before the fair later this year, which the county website implies will still happen in Hillsboro this year. A[…]

Tri-Met is changing up its fine structure this summer, introducing a tiered structure for offenders and even offering volunteering as an alternative to paying. Ride without paying your fare under the current structure and you owe $175. Tri-Met is changing that up as of July 2018. Andrew Theen, writing for The Oregonian, summarized everything: The new fare policy creates a tiered approach and slashes the fine for first-time offenders to $75. Second offense could face a $100 fine, then $150 for a third instance and $175 for fourth time fare evaders and beyond. Another change: those who can’t pay have the option to do volunteer work instead. Theen again: Community service would be offered as an alternative, with TriMet providing[…]

This week the Trump administration approved a set of tariffs on imported solar panels, a policy that could impact hundreds of jobs at Solar World here in Hillsboro. We’re living in an age of sharp partisan divide, but issues like this show the world is so much more complicated than red versus blue. First of all: this is a policy change that Oregon Senator Ron Wyden agreed with Present Donald Trump about, which is certainly rare. If anything Wyden thought the policy didn’t go far enough, calling it a partial victory: I’ll be closely studying this decision to see if it will be sufficient to level the playing field for American solar manufacturers against the flood of foreign-made solar panels. However,[…]