The Oregon Health Authority announced new mask requirements and recommendations, as positive COVID-19 cases in Oregon recently rose to approximately 42,000, according to The New York Times. According to AP News, places that masks will be required to be worn will expand to include all public and private work spaces, outdoor markets, and all public and private universities, regardless of whether social distancing is possible. OHA has also officially recommended face masks as opposed to shields, as shields do not prevent air from escaping out of the sides, according to The Oregonian. In addition, OHA submitted a preliminary plan for allocating and distributing a COVID-19 vaccine, which prioritizes giving doses to “individuals critical to the pandemic response…as well as those at highest risk for developing severe illness,” and broadens distribution as more doses become available.
A pair of Oregon wine grape vineyards lost their lawsuit against neighboring marijuana growers, after arguing the odor from the marijuana would mar their crops. The State Judge in charge of the case, Yamhill County Circuit Court Judge Cynthia Easterday, ruled the vineyards—Smera Vineyard and Maysara Winery—hadn’t met the burden of proof that would justify preventing the marijuana growers, the Wagner family, from growing their crops, according to AP News. While Easterday agreed there was a reasonable concern the odor might affect the wine grapes, there was not a sufficient amount of evidence that it would damage the plaintiff’s current or future agricultural products.
Multnomah County Circuit Court Judge Thomas Ryan ruled Friday the Portland city auditor must investigate Mayor Ted Wheeler’s $150,000 loan to his own reelection campaign, according to OPB. As part of a collection of restrictions on campaign contributions, approved by voters, candidates were limited to a $5,000 cap on loans to themselves. However, Portland City Auditor Mary Hull Caballero decided not to enforce the cap on loans, on the grounds that it conflicts with U.S. Supreme Court precedent, and could be struck down. After Wheeler’s loan, his opponent, Sarah Iannarone, filed a lawsuit on Oct. 6 to require Caballero to enforce the cap. The auditor’s office is now required to investigate Iannarone’s complaint, and must report back to the court on Nov. 4, the day after votes are counted.