Aaron Renier
OUTBREAK AND OUTRAGE The Hillsboro campus of Oregon Health Science University has made the short list for receiving a bioterrorism lab. Spurred on by the hype surrounding alleged terrorism threats, the National Institute of Health (NIH) is looking to open a $200 million "level 4" (the most risky) lab at one of several campuses around the country. The new lab will study the effects of the world's most dangerous airborne viruses--Ebola, anthrax, and hantavirus.

But Matt Rossell with In Defense of Animals is hoping to derail that plan--or at least alert local residents about what he considers a risky endeavor.

"I don't think that OHSU is up to this," says Rossell. "I've seen how they operate." Two years ago, Rossell exposed abuses and safety violations at the OHSU Primate Center, where he had worked for several years. He believes that the consequences for such sloppiness with airborne diseases would be devastating.

Yet, in spite of pending risks, local leaders have so far remained mum. Rossell has contacted both the mayor of Hillsboro and Mayor Katz.

"Both are washing their hands of this," he explains. "Vera Katz is saying, 'oh, that's Hillsboro,'" he adds. "That's ridiculous!" These viruses specifically travel on air currents and would easily reach Portland, Rossell explains. There is no known cure for Ebola. PHIL BUSSE

On Monday, Rossell will host a community meeting about the lab at the Public Services Bldg., 155 N 1st Ave, Hillsboro, 7 pm. Call 249-9996 for more information or a ride to the meeting.

HIT AND RUN Late last Monday evening--at nearly 3 am--Josh Skins, a drummer for the band Systemwide, was badly injured in a hit and run accident. He was riding his bike at the time. A spokesperson from his record label reported that his legs were broken and his pelvis was cracked in half. It is believed he was hit by a tan or cream-colored delivery van.

The accident comes nearly a month after two musicians, also on bikes, were killed by a drunk driver. In that tragedy, the driver also continued to drive after hitting the bicyclists, but was stopped two blocks later when a police officer spotted a bike pinned underneath the van. PB

Anyone with information about last Monday's accident should contact the District Attorney's office, 988-3162. On Saturday, August 2, there will be a benefit concert for Skins at the Fez.