Jackson Co. is voting to raise government fees

JACKSON CO., Ore. – Jackson County commissioners are voting on Wednesday to raise close to 200 government fees, beginning this month. Commissioners say they happen annually, but they were on the fence about moving forward this year because businesses have been hard hit by the pandemic.

“Every fee is raised for a different reason,” said Commissioner Colleen Roberts. Jackson County commissioners voted last Wednesday to pass fee changes. She said they look at adjusting fees every year. “Sometimes they go up, sometimes they go down, sometimes there are new fees,” according to Commissioner Roberts. The increases passed the all Republican board 2 – 1 last week.

Commissioner Roberts voted against the increase. “I just felt like in our economy, the economic condition due to the coronavirus, I would prefer waiting,” said the commissioner.

Commissioner Rick Dyer said if fees don’t increase, the county would have to dip into the general fund and it would eventually fall on taxpayers to pay the difference. “Either you have to start cutting services, employees or taxes would have to be raised,” said Commissioner Dyer. 

Licensing and inspection fees for restaurants will raise between $17 and $24, depending on the size of the restaurant. If you’re looking to adopt from the county animal shelter, adopting a puppy will be $200, which is a $50 increase.

Kitten adoptions will stay at $90 since the shelter typically has too many. Countywide, the smallest fee increase is 10 cents for housing sanitation. The largest, being $853 for a major road improvement permit.

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