Notes from June 18, 2013 SOS Public Meeting

Great Meeting Tuesday!

At the beginning of the meeting, sadly, we read Deputy District Attorney Rafael Caso’s Resignation Letter:

Dear Friends,

Recently I was presented with one of the harder decisions of my legal career.  As many of you know, six years ago I started working for the Josephine County District Attorney’s Office with the intention of making Grants Pass my home.  Since moving to Grants Pass my family has plugged into this community with the intent to stay; we made life-long friends, started a family, built a house, joined organizations, and fought to make this community a better place for all that live here.  Recently, I was offered a position with the Department of Justice in Salem.  My family sat down and listed the pros and cons of this new opportunity and we have decided that accepting the position with the DOJ is the proper course, at this time, for our family.

The decision was made easier by the relatively recent degradation of our local criminal justice system.  On numerous occasions my wife and I have talked about wanting to stay in this community in an effort to fight for what is right and bring Josephine County and its citizens back from the edge of the abyss; but, at what cost?   The risks associated with a county that has virtually no sheriff’s office, an inability to hold criminals in jail, and an inability to hold offenders accountable for their actions through prosecution are too great for me to subject my young family.  This decision is even more difficult due to the quality of friends that we have met and the relationships that we have fostered while living here.

On June 14, 2013, I submitted my letter of resignation to Stephen and Friday, July 12, 2013 will be my last day as a Deputy District Attorney for Josephine County.  It has been a pleasure working with you all and getting to know you.  To say that I will miss you all is an understatement.


Rafael A. Caso

Deputy District Attorney


Here are the meeting Highlights:

1)    John McCafferty gave another great presentation on the levy results by precincts; he discussed how things changed compared to the last levy; again, 54% of the County turned out to vote while only 47% of the City of Grants Pass voted

2)    Saturday Market/Sign-Up Sheet  Cheri Adkins/Cheri showed up in a brace and a walker and was warmly received! Josephine County is fortunate to have her type of character and resolve. We need to staff the SOS Booth for this Saturday’s Market in GP. At this point, I only have Neal AppletonWill you step up? Please e-mail me ASAP! I need two people from 0800-1200 1)__________ 2)__________ ; I have the canopy, the clipboards for the Opioid Clinic support signatures and for the redirection of some Lottery Funds to the Criminal Justice System support signatures; new e-mail sign-up sheet; I have three donated chairs and we need to purchase a table (Jay Meredith); “It’s a lot of fun!”; PLEASE SIGN UP BY E-MAILING ME ASAP!!!!

3)    Pat Fahey presented another “taste” of what a Multi-Tier Taxing District (Kris WoodburnChris Mecca and Jay Meredith) might look like with Districts: WHAT SAY YOU? We had some interesting discussion, which was referred to a meeting that occurred at Elmers at 0700 this morning—More to follow!

4)    Roy Lindsay Community Ecumenical Prayer Meeting  reported that the prayer meeting was a great success and thanked all of those who participated

5)    Mayor Darin Fowler gave a presentation on the possibility of the City of Grants Pass renting beds from the jail like the Federal Government does; the proposal is in substance:20-30 beds for non-Measure 11 crimes for 1 year at approximately $1 Million dollars; there is also talk to somehow re-open the Juvenile Justice Center; SOS’ points included: 1) the City should not bail out the county—however, we understand the current dilemma and understand we are in a crisis, an “Emergency” 2) the City needs to think “long term” otherwise, the city will be “building a bridge to nowhere” 3) we should not be taking the Grants Pass Department of Public Safety (GPDPS) for granted, as it is the only wheel left still intact and is the one support beam bearing tremendous weight—it had been reported that at the recent GP City Council, certain councilors were chiding the GPDPS leadership for not doing enough—someone mentioned that was like having a car with 3 flat tires and yelling at the full tire, “You’re the problem! You’re the problem!” 4) It sounds like $1.79 is appropriate and saving a nickel here or there taints the water and is pointless 5) the city government and the county governments need to work together, that’s where the unity has grown and developed into one voice (someone suggested the precinct results, especially around the city, demonstrate unity) 6) the city needs to listen to its’ people, who are also county residents in forums like SOS and other groups; the city would be wise to have a liaison from the city PAC come to SOS meetings and keep the group updated; lastly, the subject of consolidation of city and county law enforcements was brought up—the Mayor voiced how that was a subject that was even on the table—we agreed that this was a subject to be discussed at another time

6)    Shane Simon Guardian DinnerSaturday, June 29, 2013; Donation Update: $2,473 (Website Thermometer for this event shall be placed on the website Gordon Edstrom) Shane had some exciting news about Applebees Restaurant, how they have purchased 10 meals for our event and want to be listed as an SOS sponsor and want to get more involved; they have volunteered to sponsor a fundraising breakfast for our Lottery Committee! Awesome job Shane!

7)    Business Sponsors we talked briefly how important it was to solicit all the businesses we can to become a sponsor of SOS and have their logos posted on our website—It doesn’t cost anything, just creates unity!

8)    Refunding Committee’s BOLD New Idea Carl Raskins spoke about some ideas regarding this committee and how, with approximately 100 hours of donated time, we raised $626.70, which Carl is going to present to the Board of County Commissioners for the Criminal Justice System
Toni Webb encouraged everyone to get involved helping the Animal Shelter this weekend. Contact Toni at



MISSION STATEMENT: “A citizen-voiced plan to provide for a secure, stable and sustainable Josephine County.”

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