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KLCC News is covering many aspects of Oregon's May 2016 Primary Election. View KLCC's primary related stories below.OREGON PRIMARY ELECTION RESULTS

Fern Ridge Residents Plan Public Safety Levy

Rachael McDonald

A citizens’ group is crafting a community policing district levy for the Fern Ridge area for the May 17th election. A group backing the measure held a press conference Wednesday in Eugene.

Citizens say they’re concerned about increasing crime and not enough sheriffs’ deputies to respond.  Veneta resident Steve Reister says property crime is a huge problem. This month there was a double murder-suicide—it occurred when the Sheriff’s Department was short-staffed.
Reister: “One deputy’s not enough. One deputy can’t even respond to a shooting. You have to have two. We had a victim who waited in excess of 30 minutes to get help because we didn’t have that substation out there and that’s not, that can’t be acceptable.”
Reister points out the shooter, who killed himself and two others, had meth in his system. He says drugs are a big problem in western Lane County. The proposed property tax levy would cost $1.67 per $1000 assessed value. This would fund 24/7 patrols and a school resource officer, through the Sheriff’s office. This is a reduction from a previous proposal for the district.

Rachael McDonald is KLCC’s former News Director. Rachael has a BA in English from the University of Oregon. She started out in public radio as a newsroom volunteer at KLCC in 2000. After reporting for the Northwest News Network and KAZU, Rachael returned to KLCC in 2007 as Morning Edition host and a general assignment reporter covering politics, the environment, education, and the arts. She was hired as KLCC News Director in 2018. Rachael departed KLCC in June, 2022.