Agencies teaming up to clean Bear Creek Greenway

Jackson County, Ore., — “I don’t know that people feel safe to use the Greenway at all times.”

The Bear Creek Greenway extends from Central Point all the way to Ashland.

It’s intended to be a recreational path for hikers, bikers and anything in between.

But parts of the Greenway have been taken over.

“People would like to use that path, but I think right now it has a stigma of being more of an eyesore due to the trash, and accumulation of other things.” said Jackson County Sheriff, Nate Sickler.

Right now, individual agencies try their best to keep portions of the Greenway in their cities clean.

But Jackson County Sheriff Nate Sickler is hoping that can change.

“We just want to start talking about how we can collaborate to make the Greenway more usable for the community.” said Sickler.

Several agencies from around the valley are coming together to try and find a better solution to keep the Greenway clean.

“I think when everybody is doing their own thing, the potential is that it’s just kind of pushing the problem back and forth, and two and from, and not a long term solution.” said Sickler.

And it’s not just law enforcement – mental health officials, veterans affairs and parks departments are all part of the conversation.

“We know people are going to be displaced from the Greenway, so we’d like to offer them some assistance if they’re eligible for that, through mental health or veteran’s affairs.” said Sickler.

While the plan is just in the beginning stages, Sheriff Sickler already has some ideas.

“What kind of sustained long term patrolling can we do of the Greenway? What resources do all the agencies have to do these things? And then when we see what we have, we can start making even more of a plan.” said Sickler.

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