Hospitality industry gains new tsunami-education tool

OREGON COAST — The hospitality industry in Oregon has an updated tool to help prepare employees, residents and visitors for a tsunami. It is available online at along with other resources including a hazard map viewer to find out what parts of the Oregon Coast are in the Tsunami Inundation Zone.

Oregon Office of Emergency Management Geologic Hazards Program Coordinator Althea Rizzo helped coordinate the initiative “Hospitality Begins with Safety,” funded by the National Tsunami Hazard Mitigation Program.

“This initiative helps the hospitality industry take care of residents and visitors during a disaster by showing things like what kind of safety measures they need to take and what kind of supplies they need,” Rizzo said. “We developed this module to help the hospitality industry on the Oregon coast train staff on how to help keep residents and visitors safe if there is a distant or local tsunami.”

The module provides basic information about what a tsunami is, how to be safe during a tsunami, and how to help keep others safe, and Rizzo says you don’t have to be in the hospitality industry to take this education module about tsunami safety.

Realtor Victor Kee honored for efforts on behalf of the hungry

ASTORIA — Astoria Realtor Victor Kee has been honored with a $5,000 Realty Community Service Award grant from Wells Fargo for his long-term commitment to the Clatsop Community Action Regional Food Bank. Kee, a principal real estate broker with Pete Anderson Realty Office, rallies other real estate agents and the broader community to help eradicate hunger in Clatsop County through emergency food assistance.

On Feb. 7, Kee joined other local real estate agents and Wells Fargo team members as they organized the food pantry and prepared food donations for delivery to Clatsop families and individuals in need.

Kee serves as the National Association of Realtor’s Good Neighbor Society Advisory Council chair, and he is a 2008 Good Neighbor Award recipient for his work with the Seaside Sunday Supper and Meals-on-Wheels programs. He also has served by mentoring and training mentors for the National Association of Realtors Volunteering Works program.

He has been appointed by the governor to serve three consecutive terms on the Oregon State Real Estate Board. He is a past president of the Oregon Certified Residential Specialists, Realtors Land Institute and the Clatsop Association of Realtors.

Bank of the Pacific reports strong finances

ABERDEEN — Pacific Financial Corp., holding company for Bank of the Pacific, recently reported net income of $11.3 million, or $1.06 per diluted share, for the year ended Dec. 31, 2018, up from $7 million, or $0.65 per diluted share, for the year ended Dec. 31, 2017.

“We generated record profits for the fourth quarter and full year of 2018, highlighted by an expanded net interest margin of 4.58 percent, improved yields across all asset classes, and year-over-year solid core deposit growth with minimal increases in cost of funds,” said Denise Portmann, president and chief executive officer. “Income before taxes increased 1 percent from the preceding quarter, 13 percent from the year ago quarter and 21 percent from the prior 12 months.

The contribution of residential mortgage lending to non-interest income was down 9 percent, 8 percent and 20 percent from the linked quarter, year-over-year quarter and prior year, respectively. Rising interest rates and housing prices, as well as tight housing supply are dampening home financing activities within the bank’s markets.

“The recently announced closures of the two branch locations in Naselle, Wash., and Warrenton, Ore., are proceeding according to plan,” Portmann said. “Optimizing our branch network in light of increasing use of technology-based banking services plays a significant role in allocating capital resources.”

Joblessness ticks upward in latest state and local estimates

OLYMPIA — Pacific County’s estimated jobless rate increased to not-seasonally adjusted 7.7 percent in December 2018, up from 6.9 percent in November, according to the Washington State Employment Security Department. December’s rate was marginally higher than it was in December 2017 and 2016.

Clatsop County’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate continued to inch upward, reaching 4.3 percent in December, according to state figures.

Oregon’s unemployment rate rose to 4.1 percent in December from 3.9 percent in November. Oregon’s unemployment rate has been close to 4 percent for the past two years. The U.S. unemployment rate also edged up two-tenths of a percentage point, to 3.9 percent in December from 3.7 percent in November.

Washington’s economy added 11,400 jobs in December and the state’s seasonally adjusted monthly unemployment rate for December was 4.3 percent according to the Employment Security Department. The December unemployment rate was unchanged from the revised November 2018 unemployment rate of 4.3 percent. The December figures are preliminary and are subject to revisions.

Warrenton’s High Life Adventures is rated a fan-favorite

WARRENTON — High Life Adventures was recently ranked #1 Fan-Favorite Destination in Oregon by Oregon Business.

Over 66,000 online reviews of customer satisfaction were analyzed to determine the best destinations in the state.

The Columbia River Maritime Museum made the list as well at #36.

North Coast Food Web hosts ways to help local farmers

ASTORIA — Each winter, North Coast Food Web (NCFW) sponsors two key events in support of local food producers and to improve access to healthy, farm-direct food for shoppers of all kinds.

• Farmer Chef Connect is a “to the trade” event held on Monday, Feb. 25, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at NCFW headquarters, 577 18th St., Astoria.

With more and more area restaurants working to feature locally produced products on their menus, NCFW provides an opportunity for both groups to come together to find out what chefs would like to buy locally and to introduce them to what is available right here at home.

• Meet Your Farmer is an opportunity for any and all community members to see what is available from local farmers. All are welcome to meet their farmers on Sunday, March 3, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at NCFW headquarters, 577 18th St, Astoria.

This is the time of year when farms that offer CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) programs are taking registrations. In the spring when harvest season begins, CSA members will receive a weekly box of fresh produce to inspire the next 7 days of meals. Visit with the folks who grow this food, enjoy a light snack and see what’s in store for spring.

Clatsop Community Bank merging with Oregon City bank

SEASIDE — Clatsop Community Bank announced Jan. 31 that it is merging with Oregon City-based Lewis & Clark Bank.

The stock and cash deal provides CCB shareholders with about $15 million based on Lewis & Clark’s Jan. 30, 2019 closing stock price of $34.25.

At closing — expected by mid-2019 — Clatsop shareholders will receive 0.3040 Lewis & Clark shares and $2.89 in cash in exchange for each share of Clatsop stock. Based on Lewis & Clark’s closing stock price on Jan. 30, 2019 of $34.25, the merger consideration is valued at $13.30 per Clatsop share. The value of the merger consideration will fluctuate based on the price of Lewis & Clark stock.

As of Dec. 31, 2018, Clatsop had $95 million in assets and two branches, one in Seaside and one in Astoria. CCB President Joe Schulte will join Lewis & Clark as market president.

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