MEDFORD, Ore. — For a little more than a year, Josephine county has rented three beds at the Jackson county juvenile justice facility. This came as a result of Josephine county’s struggle to fund public safety. Now, the agreement will continue into the next fiscal year.
Jackson county’s juvenile justice facility can hold up to forty beds, but officials say they only average about twenty beds including the three from Josephine county. Because Jackson county isn’t near capacity they are able to reserve beds and contract them out. Officials say the because there are only three beds, Josephine county will only send there most serious offenders which could range from it assault behaviors, sex offenses, drug offenses.
“Our county’s in pretty good fiscal shape in terms of being able to continue to operate a lot of different programs, and detention is one of those. If we can help out a neighboring county in terms of assisting with some of their public safety, I think that’s a good thing,” said deputy director of the Jackson County Juvenile Services, Joe Ferguson.
Those from Josephine county housed at the Jackson county facility can appear in court via webcam, however, transporting between the counties also does happen. Jackson county officials say the contract is a win-win for both counties with Jackson county benefiting financially and Josephine county get some detention services.