Josephine County Sheriff defends post-levy operations

GRANTS PASS, Ore. – Josphine County Sheriff Dave Daniel wrote an open letter defending the sheriff’s office after a media outlet reported the jail was operating at a lower capacity than before the passage of a public safety levy that allowed more funds.

Sheriff Daniel posted the following on Facebook:

On Sunday, April 1st, 2018 the citizens of Josephine County were handed a cruel April Fool’s joke. The Grants Pass Daily Courier wrote an article stating the jail was currently at lower levels than before the passage of the levy. I am here to tell you that is absolutely not true. As I type this letter, the jail is at 145 capacity but on occasion can drop to 130 depending on transports out of county. Prior to the levy we were at a 130 capacity. When the levy passed we went to a capacity of 150. Although it was very difficult on the Deputies we felt it was very important to show our citizenry we will work extremely hard for them. Then Murphy’s Law came to the jail and we lost 3 personnel one month after the levy and will be losing another to the city police force soon. This forced us to reduce the numbers but we are again increasing our capacity and will not stop until we reach 185 as promised. It is important to know that it takes time to hire and train personnel adequately.

The Sheriff’s Office has made many improvements in the last 3 years. We are increasing jail services, increasing patrols and will be increasing hours of service, putting a Deputy in the schools, getting Resident Deputies assigned to the rural areas of the county with offices in the schools, conducted dozens of successful Search and Rescue Operations with volunteers and donations, upgraded the camera system in the jail which increases safety and reduces liability at no cost to taxpayers, successfully defended all frivolous lawsuits and paid out zero, reduced the time it takes to provide Concealed Handgun licenses from 4 months to 3 weeks, getting a body scanner to keep drugs out of the jail at no cost to taxpayers, started a records/reception program so from 8 to 5 Monday thru Friday you can get a person to speak to when you call as there had not been for many years, implementation of an “in-the-cars” dash cam video system to increase transparency and professionalism, created a Naloxone program to combat opioid overdoses which already saved a life, stopped the procedure of having a list of call types the office would not respond to and began handling all calls for service when possible.

Recently there has been a lot of talk about the status of your Sheriff’s Office. Remember the levy was a corrections levy only by mandate and we are working diligently to meet the wishes of our citizens. Above are only a few of the improvements we have made. From every Deputy and nonsworn employee, it is an honor and privilege to service you.

Respectfully,

Dave Daniel
Josephine County Sheriff

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