Local News

State Agency Moving to Fund West Valley View Plan Upgrade Project in City of Talent
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The Oregon Housing and Community Services Department (OHCS) has advised the City of Talent of its intent to fund the city's proposed West Valley View Plan Upgrade and Revitalization Project in the amount of nearly $4.3 million. Talent Mayor Darby Ayers-Flood said this is very welcome news, adding that the project is key to the economic recovery of the community. She said it's also a project that will ultimately unify several neighborhoods through improved connectivity. The project would include infrastructure improvements needed to prepare the Gateway site for redevelopment as a mixed-use, workforce housing and commercial development. Other work would include an extension of Wagner Street east of Talent Avenue and a fully-improved street with sidewalks, drainage and curbs on Gangnes Loop. The funding is provided through the federal Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery program. The funding allocation is subject to a final review of the project scope by OHCS, completion of a community outreach program and other federal funding conditions. The City is also working with OHCS and ACCESS to develop a relocation plan for the remaining Almeda Fire victims currently living in trailers at the Gateway site. The current agreement to provide the site for temporary housing expires in January 2025.
Posted on 6/13/24 6:19AM by Sam Marsh

Josephine Community Library Offers Summer Reading Program "Journey" for All Ages
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Josephine Community Library is inviting citizens to join the 2024 Summer Reading Program that starts this Saturday and runs through August 10th -- with activities, in-person weekly crafts and prizes for all ages. The 2024 theme is "A Journey Awaits: Where Books are Your Passport and Imagination is Your Destination." It's being sponsored by Evergreen Federal Bank, Josephine Community Library Foundation and the State Library of Oregon. Participants can track their reading using the online reading tracker and earn raffle tickets for prizes at the end of the program. Community members can visit the library website at "josephinelibrary.org" or visit in-person at three branches in Grants Pass, Williams or Wolf Creek for weekly themed activities, recommended reading and interactive resources. The Illinois Valley branch library is closed this summer for renovations. Online registration for the Summer Reading Program is underway. Activity booklets, crafts and registration prizes are available while supplies last at the library branches beginning this Saturday, June 15th. Special events are planned. The Summer Reading Program and related events are offered at no cost to local participants. A library card is not needed to take part.
Posted on 6/13/24 6:17AM by Sam Marsh

Two Women Killed When Their Vehicle Slammed into Tree in the Illinois Valley
Two women were killed yesterday when their vehicle slammed into a tree off an Illinois Valley roadway near Kerby. The Josephine County Sheriff's Office reports deputies and emergency personnel were dispatched to the single-vehicle crash in the 4600-block of Reeves Creek Road on Tuesday at 3:08 p.m.. Prior to law enforcement arrival, the driver -- 20-year-old Paige Ellen Collyer -- and the passenger -- 34-year-old Shannon Marie Hewitt -- were pronounced dead by medical personnel. Next of kin have been notified. Deputies said evidence at the scene indicated the 1997 Lexus sedan was traveling north on Reeves Creek at high rate of speed when it failed to negotiate a curve and left the roadway, striking a tree. The Illinois Valley Fire District, American Medical Response, Oregon State Police and Jerry's Towing assisted at the scene of the double-fatal crash.
Posted on 6/12/24 2:15PM by Sam Marsh

Board Approves 1st Reading of Ordinance Adding ADUs to Rural Development
The Josephine County Board of Commissioners this morning approved the first reading of an ordinance that would allow the construction of Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) on rural properties. The Board voted 2-0 to approve the ordinance that amends the Josephine County Code by adding a chapter to Rural Land Development regarding ADUs and set the second hearing and adoption for June 26th. Commissioner Herman Baertschiger was absent. Assistant Legal Counsel Stephanie Nutall testified that ADUs would be limited to 900 square feet and they must be located no more than 100 feet from an existing single-family dwelling on rural properties outside the urban growth boundary that are at least two acres in size. She said the current code does not permit ADUs. The Commissioners postponed an Administrative Action item as well as a planned presentation from Josephine County Public Health. Under Requests and Comments from Citizens, the Board heard from the Executive Director for Southern Oregon Regional Economic Development, Inc.. Colleen Padilla said she was happy to report that SOREDI has added a new staff member that brings the 37-year-old organization back to full strength for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic. She said they look forward to serving Josephine County. The Board opened the meeting with the monthly employee recognitions. Several county workers were recognized including Deputy Planning Director James Black and Drug Prevention Coordinator Shawn Martinez.
Posted on 6/12/24 11:32AM by Sam Marsh
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GP Police Jailed Man for Harassing Ex-Girlfriend at Harbeck Village Apartments
Grants Pass Police jailed a man for harassing his ex-girlfriend at a south-city apartment complex late last night. The Police Department reports officers arrested the 39-year-old male subject for the incident at Harbeck Village Apartments on Harbeck Road at 12:47 a.m. today. Police said the man showed up at the apartment of his ex-girlfriend while heavily intoxicated and an argument followed, with the man pushing the woman once on the shoulder and attempting to punch her. The victim told officers she was able to block the punch due to her ex-boyfriend's high level of inebriation. Responding officers searched the area and found the man walking back to his mother's residence on SE Ramsey Avenue near Three Rivers Medical Center. A records check showed he had been trespassed from the same apartment last December. The suspect was placed into custody and lodged at the Josephine County Jail for Physical Harassment and 2nd-Degree Criminal Trespass. He was being held without bail.
Posted on 6/12/24 11:31AM by Sam Marsh
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GP Police Incarcerated Woman for Discarding Deceased Cat into Neighbor's Yard
Grants Pass Police arrested a woman for discarding items -- including a dead cat -- into her neighbor's yard at a southeast-city apartment complex last night. According to the Police Department, officers responded to a complaint at the complex in the 500-block of SE L Street on Tuesday around 9:45 p.m.. Police said were alerted to a 9-1-1 call from a woman who claimed her neighbor had been throwing trash into their yard and it had escalated with the 52-year-old female subject throwing a dead cat over the fence. Officers said an investigation revealed that the woman intentionally overturned a cat bed with a dead cat and defrosted meat over the fence. They reviewed video of the incident and then placed her into custody. The suspect was lodged at the Josephine County Jail for Offensive Littering. She was being held without bail.
Posted on 6/12/24 11:29AM by Sam Marsh
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GP Police Snared Man on Warrant after Responding to City Ordinance Violation
Grants Pass Police arrested a male transient on an outstanding warrant after responding to an ordinance violation near the downtown area late yesterday. The Police Department reports officers responded to a citizen complaint near the corner of NW F and Booth streets on Tuesday shortly after 5 p.m.. Police said they were alerted to two men who had set up a campsite that was blocking the sidewalk at that location. The caller also reported trash was strewn around the campsite. Officers contacted the campers and learned that one of them was wanted on a Jackson County warrant for failing to appear in court for Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants, Reckless Driving, Driving While Suspended and Reckless Endangering. He was placed into custody. The 32-year-old suspect was lodged at the Josephine County Jail on the warrant. Both men were warned for Scattering Rubbish and Blocking the Sidewalk.
Posted on 6/12/24 11:28AM by Sam Marsh
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GP Police Nabbed Man for Returning to City Park before 30-Day Trespass Over
Grants Pass Police arrested a man for returning to a city park from which he had been trespassed less than a month ago. According to the Police Department, officers were performing a patrol check at Riverside Park early yesterday when they contacted the 21-year-old male subject sleeping in the lower gazebo near the playground. Officers said they contacted the man who had a previous trespass warning dated May 13th. They said he admitted to knowing about the park exclusion and he was placed into custody. He was found with drugs and drugs paraphernalia. The suspect was lodged at the Josephine County Jail for 2nd-Degree Criminal Trespass and cited to appear in court for the narcotics violation. He was being held without bail.
Posted on 6/12/24 11:26AM by Sam Marsh
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OSP Cited Truck Driver for Speeding after Interstate 5 Crash in Sunny Valley
The Oregon State Police cited a truck driver for speeding after he crashed his semi on Interstate 5 in Sunny Valley yesterday. OSP reports troopers and emergency crews responded to the commercial vehicle wreck in the northbound lanes of I-5 near milepost 70 on Tuesday at 3:42 p.m.. Troopers said a 25-year-old man from Ceres, California, was driving a semi-truck when the vehicle overturned on a sharp curve. They said the man was not injured, but the truck was damaged and hauled into Grants Pass by Caveman Towing. According to OSP, the driver admitted to exceeding the posted speed limit which caused the crash. He was cited for Violating the Basic Rule.
Posted on 6/12/24 11:24AM by Sam Marsh
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Trusted Sources Report Double-Fatal Crash on Reeves Creek Road near Kerby
The Grants Pass Broadcasting Corporation is aware of a double-fatal crash that occurred yesterday in the Illinois Valley near Kerby. However, no official report has been released by the Josephine County Sheriff's Office or any other emergency agencies regarding the incident. Trusted sources report the two victims were in a vehicle that struck a tree on Reeves Creek Road. Those same sources say both occupants of the vehicle were declared deceased at the scene. We are awaiting an official report on the incident before releasing any other information.
Posted on 6/12/24 6:29AM by Sam Marsh
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GP Man Injured in Motor Vehicle Crash Arrested on Statewide Felony Warrant
A Grants Pass man who was injured this week when his motorized bicycle was struck by a vehicle was also arrested on a statewide felony warrant. Grants Pass Police and emergency personnel responded to the two-vehicle crash in the 1400-block of NW 6th Street on Monday afternoon. Police said a 44-year-old man was operating an eBike on 6th Street when he was struck by a large white truck driven by another man. A witness at an automobile dealership reported the bike rider was standing and walking, but he was holding his head. It was not disclosed whether he was wearing a helmet. During the crash investigation, officers discovered that the man was wanted on an Oregon State warrant for Parole Violation stemming from an assault conviction. He was transported to Three Rivers Medical Center for an evaluation and -- after being cleared by doctors -- he was lodged at the Josephine County Jail on a no-bail detainer. Following the investigation, the truck driver was cited for Careless Driving.
Posted on 6/12/24 6:28AM by Sam Marsh
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OSP Snared Felon for Parole Violation after Stopping Him for Impaired Driving
The Oregon State Police arrested a motorist for violating terms of his post-prison supervision after he was pulled over for impaired driving on Redwood Highway west of Grants Pass this week. OSP reports troopers stopped a black Lincoln Navigator driven by a 22-year-old man near milepost 4 of US Highway 199 around midday Monday. Troopers said the Lincoln was called in as a driving complaint after it struck a guard rail and continued northbound toward Grants Pass. It was reported that the driver was unable to maintain his travel lane and was going into oncoming traffic. Upon contact with the driver, he displayed signs of impairment and performed poorly in field sobriety tests. He was placed into custody when it was discovered that he was a convicted felon. The suspect motorist was lodged at the Josephine County Jail for Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants and Reckless Driving plus Felony Parole Violation. He was being held on a no-bail detainer and his vehicle was impounded.
Posted on 6/12/24 6:19AM by Sam Marsh
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