Oregon initiative racketeer Bill Sizemore was indicted for tax evasion on Monday, November 30, just a week after declaring himself a Republican candidate in the 2010 gubernatorial primary race. Each of the three counts against Sizemore and his wife, Cindy, could lead to a maximum penalty of five years in prison with a $125,000 fine, says Sean Riddell, chief of Attorney General John Kroger's criminal justice division, which is leading the prosecution.

Is the decision to indict political? "It's not," says Riddell. "When I was first hired by the attorney general, in my first interview with him to discuss our goals and objectives, he made it quite clear that he and I were never to discuss politics, and that I was never to make any decision based on politics." Sizemore did not return the Mercury's inquiries seeking comment by press time. MATT DAVIS

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Multnomah County Chair Ted Wheeler broke his back while skiing over the weekend, but was kind enough to keep his constituents informed on Twitter and Facebook. "In hosp. w/broken back, shoulder, and slight facial lacerations from skiing accident," he tweeted early Sunday morning, November 29, linking to a cell phone shot of him in a hospital bed. Later: "Big splat. I don't remember it but I must have hit rocks under the snow. Stuff happens." And: "I don't remember anything at all. I was knocked out and had a concussion," he continued. "Wife said I was out cold for 5 minutes." Wheeler should be back in the office next week and is already back on Facebook, posting links to articles. MD

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Vote for the Measure 66 and 67 tax hikes on Oregon's ballot in January or face a grim slash-and-burn state budget, warns a new report from the Oregon Legislative Fiscal Office. State agencies calculated what they'll do if voters reject the measures, which would generate $727 million in taxes on corporations and the wealthy. The cuts would be bad news for people who value education: Community colleges estimate they would have to raise tuition by up to 16 percent and cut classes. The cuts would also be bad news for people who value their safety: The corrections department says it will need to close six prisons and jails, lay off 500 staff workers, and immediately release 1,869 inmates on parole. SARAH MIRK