SOS Meeting Agenda: 12-11-2012

Our Meeting this week will be on Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 5:15-6:15 PM@ the Newman United Methodist Church located at 135 NE B Street in Grants Pass. We will be meeting in the cozy parlor area of the main Church, like we did several weeks ago!
1) Blitz Update-Fireteam Captains Report/next Captain Meeting/Bill Ertel will be collecting presentation appearances

Kimberly Gasperson

1.City of Cave Junction Council Meeting December 10th

2. Rotary in Cave Junction December 18th

3. GP Firefighters January 2, 2012 @ 5:10 PM


1. Disabled Vets 541-660-5174

2. Rogue Valley Gems Club (Mary Bowers Club)

3. Veterans of Foreign Wars 541-479-5241

4. Middle Rogue Steelheaders

5. Local old folks resthomes! (more to follow on this)

Linda Rahberger

1.The Democrats of Josephine County

2. Friends of the Library – Grants Pass Branch

3. Daughters of the American Revolution – Rogue River Chapter

4. Grants Pass Genealogical Society

5. The Josephine County Historical Society

Steve Marshak

1. american association of university women

2. illinois valley rotary

3. josephine county of republican women

4. Korean war veterans

5. relics senior softball league

Holly Lidey

1. Newcomers

2. Catholic Church

3. GP Toastmasters

4. Towne Hall at Wolf Creek Community Center

5. Mid Rogue Independent Physicians Association

Cheri Adkins

1. IV Chamber of Commerce Janaury 23, 2012

2. IV Lions Club January 8, 2012

3. Lions Club, waiting for confirmation

4. North Valley Business Association

5. Galice Business Association

6. 9-12 group, Kerby Janaury 23, 2012

Archie Lidey

1. Knights of Columbus

2. Neuman Methodist Church

3. Grants Pass Elks and Emblem Club

4. Grants Pass Police Officer’s Association December 12, 2012

5. Dutch Brother’s HQ

Erica Johnston

1. Grants Pass Rotary


1) CAPTAIN: Jay Meredith 2)_Darin Fowler 3)_Quin Collins__4)__Bill Ertel (COMPLETE)

2) CAPTAIN: Bill West 2)__Mike Waldon___ 3)_Mary Bowers__4)_Jennifer Essick (COMPLETE)

3) CAPTAIN: Holly Lidey 2)_Liz Hirni 3)_David Smith__4)__Frank Morin_ (COMPLETE)

4) CAPTAIN: Abe Huntley 2)_Ryan Mulkins__ 3)_John McCafferty___4)__Jim Frick__(COMPLETE)

5) CAPTAIN: Pat Fahey 2)__Dave Daniel___3)__Dylan Orton_ 4)__Peter Angstadt (COMPLETE)

6) CAPTAIN: Linda Rahberger 2)__________________3)____________­­­­­_____ 4)_____________

7) CAPTAIN: Steve Marshak 2)___Greg Redfern 3)_Toni Webb 4)_Dominic Zottola_

 8) CAPTAIN: Kim Gasperson 2)_Lily Morgan__ 3)_Shane Simon_ 4) _________________

 9) CAPTAIN: Erica Johnston 2) Matt Johnston_ 3)_Melissa Snyder_ 4)_Travis Snyder_ (COMPLETE)

 10) CAPTAIN: Archie Lidey 2)_Erin Mateja 3)_Ryan Brown 4)__Cliff Thomason_ (COMPLETE)

 11) CAPTAIN: Cheri Adkins 2)__Keith Heck__ 3)_Harry Mackin 4)___Mark Gatlin_(COMPLETE)

 12) CAPTAIN: Brian Pendleton 2)_Laurie Norman__ 3)__Mike Sanchez____ 4) Janine Wilson___  

***Briefly, Toni Webb has been assisting on polishing our Power Point presentation even more! Thanks Toni!
2) GP City Council and CJ City Council Support Update for Tax District (Jeff Wolf, Connie Roach and Jay Meredith)
“We need to let everyone know that the Commissioners unanimously passed our request. It will be on the agenda for the City of GP Monday at 11:45 and City of CJ Monday at 7:00 pm. Would be great if anyone who is able, come to these meetings to show their support.”
As reported earlier, the group Tuesday night (December 4, 2012) unanimously agreed by vote to push forward with a proposal for a Taxing District concept. While the specifics for the actual proposal are still being worked on, we needed to act in order to avoid missing the deadline, thereby forfeiting any chance of any type of such proposal for the May 2013 Ballot. Again, this is a work-in-progress and at this point in time, we are simply “keeping the door open” or preserving an opportunity, which we would have otherwise missed by not taking any action. Great effort and great job by all of those who participated. As with every SOS concept, we cannot express enough how open our process is and how we continue to extend an open invitation to every and anyone in Josephine County who wants to help us resolve our problem. We also reminded ourselves that this idea is only a single prong of a multi-prong solution to achieve our goal of: “A citizen-voiced plan to provide for a secure, stable and sustainable Josephine County.
3) Jay Meredith, Gordon Edstrom, Toni Webb and I have been working on the website over the weekend and we are very close to having a product that I believe you will like. In the future, you will be directed to the website for Meeting Agendas, Updates, News, etc. (You will miss my 1,000+ e-mails per week…)
4) KAJO reported in error last week that SOS sent the Board of County Commissioners a proposal for the consolidation of City and County services. That is incorrect and both Jay Meredith and Pat Fahey worked hard to have that report corrected. They were referring to the Taxing District concept. No worries. These things happen…
5) Venues have been established for 2013. Thank you to Newman Methodist Church and to the Wild River Brew Pub!
6) Date for our next event: Hands around the Juvenile Justice Center (Date/Tag Line, etc.) We will not be meeting on Christmas or on New Years. It has been proposed that in a show of unity and support, that we all get together and join hands and form a large circle around the Juvenile Justice Center. While it currently stands empty, by our presence, we will demonstrate to the community, if not but for a single moment, our commitment and resolve to restore our Criminal Justice System, and demonstrate by this single act, how our children are not forgotten. Wouldn’t it be great if we had so many people that we circled the building several times? I am suggesting a date of maybe December 20, 2012 @ 5:15 PM… What Say You?
7) Website-Jay Meredith and FAQ Gatekeeper-Frank Morin (I encourage you to check out how awesome our website is now!)
8) Committee Captain’s Report
Sales Tax-Jay Meredith  
Private/Public Partnerships/Improved Efficiencies Toni Webb  and LaurieNorman    
Natural Resources-Jim Frick    
Property Tax Variations-Jeff Wolf    
Trust,Transparency, Education and Public Ownership and Involvement-Holly Lidey   Bill Ertel    
State Lottery Funds –Cliff Thomason    
Justice of the Peace Court has a new team Captain-David Corsi     
BIOMASS-Cheri Adkins
We have been doing great in keeping our meetings to an hour! Many of you are meeting multiple times a week. Thank you! Thanks for saving our home.

SOS Prompts JoCo Commissioners to Begin Law Enforcement District Discussion

The following is the text of a letter sent to the Josephine County Commissioners last week.


December 4, 2012

Board of County Commissioners

Josephine County Courthouse

500 NW 6th Street

Grants Pass, OR 97526


Dear County Commissioners,

As you are well aware, Securing Our Safety (SOS) is a non-profit that formed in 2012 for the purposes of research and education on how to help the County provide the services that are required for a “secure, stable, and sustainable Josephine County.”  To date our efforts have focused mostly on the local Criminal Justice program challenges as the Criminal Justice System is one of the key infrastructure components for our County along with the basic requirements of schools, roads, utilities and other core community needs.

SOS has gathered enough research and community input to make a specific recommendation that requires your immediate attention in order to keep elections options open for the coming year.  SOS has been working on a variety of potential funding options and service options to restore Criminal Justice services.  An SOS Natural Resources Committee was the spark that helped the County restore the Timber Advisory Board with a goal of quickly increasing local timber production on County lands and other lands in a sustainable manner.  This group is already making great progress on ideas that could be one of many solutions needed to restore our community’s critical Criminal Justice services.  While much progress has been made, it’s just a portion of the ultimate combination of solutions needed.  Today, Commissioners need to schedule and approve an order that starts the process of creating a new Law Enforcement District to serve our local Criminal Justice programs.

SOS has learned that creating a Law Enforcement District has a number of specific steps required to start the official process of taking public input on the matter, the first of which needs to happen over the next week.  More specifically, the first step at the County level is for the BCC to approve an order by December 19, 2012, that initiates the formation of the district.  And since the SOS recommendation is that the Law Enforcement District cover the entire county with services shared by the entire County, the City of Grants Pass and the City of Cave Junction must approve to be a part of the new district prior to the BCC order to initiate the district.  With your specific notification to the two cities that you intend to initiate district formation, the two cities could each act on a resolution to be included in the district on December 10th, allowing the BCC to consider the new district in your meeting on December 19, 2012.

After working on various solutions for nearly seven months and having so far gathered over 1000 surveys from our residents on the topic of Criminal Justice level of service and funding options, SOS can now confidently say that our residents want a higher level of service.  We can also confidently say that if local taxes are part of the combination of eventual solutions, our residents would prefer that tax be a property tax (the most common and preferred way to fund local government services in Oregon).  While our collection of community input will remain ongoing in coming months, some very preliminary survey statistics are now available on our website here:

Our recommendation involves a Law Enforcement District that would be formed for the purposes of minimal funding for specific Criminal Justice services that everyone in the County shares no matter whether they reside in one of the cities or out in the unincorporated parts of the County.  The ultimate result is after a vote of the entire County, the new district would have a minimum property tax rate that would last until either residents vote to change it or Commissioners choose to levy less than the permanent authority of the new district.  This would be a property tax rate significantly lower than the proposal in May of 2012, and would help meet the definition of a “secure, stable, and sustainable Josephine County.”

SOS requests that the BCC immediately begin the process of forming this district in order to meet the deadlines require for County residents to vote on this matter in May of 2013.  May of 2013 would be the last reasonable opportunity for this partial funding solution to contribute to the County’s Fiscal 2014 budget should voters agree with the specifics of the eventual elections measure.  The process must begin by your action on December 19th in order for the BCC to have the required hearings on this matter in January and February of 2013.  Essentially, this initial action is not approving the district but rather beginning the official process of forming the district and holding the required hearings at the BCC level.  By this action, the district option remains open next year if Commissioners choose to bring this to voters.  Without this swift action, the potential partial funding contribution to our County’s badly needed Criminal Justice services would have to wait at least one additional fiscal year.

In today’s SOS meeting, the unanimous recommendation of the nearly 30 SOS members in attendance was that the County immediately initiate the formation of a Law Enforcement District that would provide funding for the Criminal Justice services all County residents share:  The Adult Jail, Juvenile Justice, The District Attorney, Court Services, and Animal Control.  This would allow the BCC enough time to hold the proper hearings on the new district idea in January and February and enough time to place the proposal on the May 2013 ballot for consideration by all County residents.  Should you agree, please also immediately inform the cities of Cave Junction and Grants Pass of your intentions so they can each independently choose by Monday December 10th whether to be included in the district.

Securing Our Safety and the entire County thanks you for keeping options open as we approach yet another year with significant funding challenges for our Criminal Justice System.  We look forward to participating in hearings on the district idea and sharing why it could be a great partial contribution to a series of solutions to our local funding challenges.



Jay Meredith, President and Board Chair

Securing Our Safety, Inc.