JoCo commissioners vote to add ‘law enforcement district’ to Nov. ballot

JOSEPHINE COUNTY, Ore. – Josephine County Sheriff Dave Daniel hoping to find a solution to the sheriff’s office funding issues, once again.

On May 24, Sheriff Daniel proposed a ‘law enforcement district.’

It would be funded by those outside Grants Pass generating revenue from 99 cents per thousand dollars assessed property value.

Sheriff Daniel explained what would happen if there isn’t enough funding.

¬†“At my office, sir, would be absolutely decimated,” he said. “I would have no detectives division other than what monies I have for JMED. I would have basically at this point no patrol¬†division at all.”

Commissioners voted in favor of putting it on the November ballot.

Sheriff Daniel said the county has received money from the ‘American Rescue Plan Act’ to help fund the sheriff’s office for this year and next, but he has long term concerns.

Last November, an overwhelming number of Josephine County voters said ‘no’ to a commissioner proposed three percent ‘seasonal retail tax’ to permanently fund the sheriff’s office.

Commissioner Dan DeYoung said last year he was in support of the retail tax, because other options like districts weren’t ideal.

“It needs to have a chance in front of the voter, if not, we’re back to square on with property taxes and districts and so on and so forth that have proved really unpopular,” he said.

In the past, the sheriff’s office has relied on levies to fund it’s operations.

In 2017, a levy that funded secure staff and jail for the next four years passed.

Before that, from 2012 to 2016, five tax levies were proposed, all of them rejected by the voters.

Sheriff Daniel said they need to find a solution now, for the long term.

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NBC5 News reporter Zachary Larsen grew up in Surprise, Arizona. He graduated from Arizona State University's Walter Cronkite School of Journalism. At ASU, Zack interned at Arizona Sports 98.7FM and Softball America. During his Junior year, Zack joined the ASU Sports Bureau. He covered the Fiesta Bowl, the Phoenix Open and major basketball tournaments. Zack enjoys working out, creative writing, music, and rooting for his ASU Sun Devils.
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