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In brief: Appointments for SNAP help with heating bills set record

A record 1,562 people made appointments to apply for help with their heating bills on Friday, the first day that SNAP began scheduling applicants for the winter season.

This year, the nonprofit organization has expanded the hours it is taking calls for heating assistance appointments and began scheduling them even before Congress has authorized energy assistance funding.

SNAP’s phone line will be open again today and every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday. Call (509) 242-2376.

Appointments also can be made online at

Kevin Graman

Wildfire in Grant County poses threat to homes

A new wildfire burning in central Washington grass and sagebrush is threatening about 10 homes, a Grant County spokesman said. The county declared an emergency and state officials are sending firefighting help.

County Emergency Management spokesman Kyle Foreman said Friday night that the fire had burned across about 6,000 acres or nearly 9 1/2 square miles. Another five homes considered threatened earlier were being protected by fire crews.

No injuries have been reported.

Foreman said about 90 firefighters are attacking the blaze with the help of four state helicopters and equipment from three counties. Grant County activated its emergency operations center.

The cause of the fire in the rocky, steep Baird Springs area northwest of Quincy was not immediately known.

Associated Press