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Josephine County will ask US Rep. Cliff Bentz for federal help against illegal marijuana grows

The Josephine County Board of Commissioners agreed to send Congressman Cliff Bentz a letter asking for federal assistance in the county's effort to crack down on black market marijuana grows.

Posted: Oct 13, 2021 5:11 PM

GRANTS PASS, Ore. — The Josephine County Board of Commissioners on Wednesday agreed to send Congressman Cliff Bentz a letter asking for federal assistance in the county's effort to crack down on black market marijuana grows.

Like neighboring Jackson County, which declared a local state of emergency in response to illicit marijuana on Wednesday, Josephine County law enforcement has been ramping up the crackdown on illegal marijuana grows in recent months. And like Jackson, Josephine County offiials say that they do not have the resources to address the enormity of the issue.

Federal help could be falling into their lap, however. According to Josephine County legal counsel Wally Hicks, Congressman Cliff Bentz reached out to Josephine County last week to ask how he could provide assistance. With that, officials began drafting a letter to Bentz to formally request help.

"The letter encourages federal authorities, including federal law enforcement and the US Attorney's Office, to make investigation and prosecution of narco networks their top priority for the next three years at least, and request that federal authorities take other practical steps to assist the effort both at the federal and the state and local level," Hicks said.

All three commissioners agreed that they wanted to approve the letter. Commissioner Dan DeYoung said that he would hand-deliver the letter to Rep. Bentz when the Congressman visits the Medford area on Thursday.

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