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The latest extended forecast from The Weather Channel

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Hydrologic Outlook issued February 13 at 2:55PM PST until February 14 at 10:00AM PST by NWS

...MILD, WET, AND BREEZY CONDITIONS MAY LEAD TO STREAM RISES... AN UNSETTLED WEATHER PATTERN WILL CONTINUE THROUGH THE WEEKEND AND INTO EARLY NEXT WEEK. EXPECT RISING SNOW LEVELS AND MILD TEMPERATURES LEADING TO MELTING OF THE MID AND LOW ELEVATION SNOW. THE SNOW MELT IN COMBINATION WITH RAIN MAY LEAD TO RISES ON MANY OF THE AREA`S STREAMS. TEMPERATURES ON MONDAY...TUESDAY AND

Today

Hi48° Slight Chance Rain and Patchy Fog then Cloudy

Tonight

Lo39° Mostly Cloudy

Washington's Birthday

Hi56° Mostly Sunny

Monday Night

Lo41° Partly Cloudy

Tuesday

Hi54° Partly Sunny

Tuesday Night

Lo40° Mostly Cloudy

Wednesday

Hi49° Chance Rain

Wednesday Night

Lo38° Chance Rain

Thursday

Hi46° Slight Chance Showers

Thursday Night

Lo32° Mostly Cloudy

Fire victims face ‘tight’ rental market

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PATEROS — It was already tough to find a place to rent in Okanogan County before wildfires burned down about 150 homes last week.

The vacancy rate was only 2 percent in Twisp, Winthrop and Pateros, said Lael Duncan, executive director of the Okanogan County Community Action Council. Now, with an estimated 1,000 people displaced, the situation is even worse.

Rentals are few and far between,” Duncan said. “Even for folks who are not low income, the rental market was really tight.”

Officials in Okanogan County are scrambling to find ways to help people who have lost their homes in the big wildfire Thursday and Friday.

Duncan said she is hesitant to start a program that would bring in mobile homes for people to live in.

Longterm, I don’t want to create a ghetto,” she said.

On Tuesday, officials from 18 local agencies gathered to come up with a plan. Key agencies included the Community Action Council, the Salvation Army, Catholic Charities and the Red Cross, said Megan Snow, a Red Cross spokeswoman.

Duncan said assessing the damage and coming up with a complete plan to help people is several days away.

Officials don’t yet have solid numbers on how many people need long-term housing. The three Red Cross shelters — in Chelan, Brewster and Winthrop — housed 24 people on Wednesday. That is down from more than 80 people who were in four to five shelters shortly after the wildfire went out of control Thursday night, Snow said.

fire officials say almost all of the 153 burned homes were primary homes and not vacation homes. In Alta Lake alone, about 44 homes were destroyed.

The need, everyone agrees, is likely to be substantial.

Reach Dee Riggs at 509-664-7147 or .