For Immediate Release
September 2, 2021
Report Your Dry Wells to the Oregon Water Resources Department
(Salem, OR) – The Oregon Water Resources Department is asking Oregonians who rely on wells for their water use to report their dry wells or low producing wells online. Visit our Dry Well webpage at www.oregon.gov/owrd/drywell and click on the link to report your dry well.
Reported information helps the Department understand changes in aquifers across the state and how the drought is impacting groundwater supplies and those that rely on groundwater. In addition, the reported information helps state and local agencies to identify where assistance may be needed. The Department will utilize the information to understand the scope of people affected and distribute information to affected well owners if any assistance becomes available.
During drought, a combination of factors such as increased groundwater pumping and reduced groundwater recharge can lead to significantly reduced production or no production of water from wells. Regardless of drought conditions, it is important for well owners to use water wisely and conserve groundwater in order to preserve it for future use. Some groundwater reservoirs, called aquifers, only store small quantities of water and require annual rainfall or surface water for recharge, which can lead to annual seasonal water supply challenges. Other aquifers may store greater quantities of water but do not recharge very quickly, which can lead to declining groundwater levels with time.
If you do rely on a domestic well and you are experiencing water supply shortages, it is important to conserve that water for essential household uses such as drinking, bathing, cooking, or sanitation. Practice water conservation both inside and outside of the home and reduce or eliminate all outdoor water use. For more tips on how to use water wisely, visit www.drought.oregon.gov.
If your well does go dry, or you begin to experience water supply shortages due to significantly lower production from the well, see our Water Wells and Drought handout and our Water Well Owner’s Handbook at www.oregon.gov/owrd/drywell.
The Oregon Water Resources Department is the state agency charged with studying, allocating, and distributing water in Oregon. Visit us at www.oregon.gov/owrd.Read More
This program is not a loan, which means those who receive assistance will not have to pay back funds so long as they are used as approved and not duplicating other assistance programs. Assistance is offered to all eligible renters regardless of their citizenship or immigration status, and it will not impact the recipient’s eligibility for other federally funded programs such as food stamps, Medicaid, Medicare, social security, WIC or public housing.
Renters who are eligible for the program may request rent and/or utility assistance dating back to March 13, 2020 (prior expenses are not eligible).
The Oregon Emergency Rental Assistance Program will cover up to 12 months of past due rent and three months of forward rent, once all past due rent is paid. The program will also cover past due utility costs including electricity, gas, home energy services, water, sewer, trash removal, internet and bulk fuels. Costs that will NOT be covered include: homeowner costs, homeowner utilities, landlord-paid utilities, landlord-paid property taxes, property insurance, phone, and renter insurance.
If approved, in most cases, payments will be made directly to the landlord, property owner or utility company on the tenant’s behalf via direct deposit or check. Program funds are not first-come-first-serve. Funds will be distributed based on a formula that prioritizes applications based on need. Everyone who turns in a completed application will have their application reviewed.
CORONAVIRUS WATCH: GOV. BROWN EXPANDS MASK MANDATE TO INCLUDE OUTDOOR PUBLIC SETTINGS
The Governor’s office said that this requirement applies to outdoor events and other circumstances where physical distancing is not possible.
SALEM, Ore. — Governor Kate Brown announced on Tuesday that Oregon’s statewide mask mandate will be expanded to include outdoor public spaces, particularly large events and other circumstances where physical distancing is not possible.
“The Delta variant is spreading fast and wide, throwing our state into a level of crisis we have not yet seen in the pandemic. Cases and hospitalizations are at a record high,” said Governor Brown. “Masks are a quick and simple tool we can immediately deploy to protect ourselves and our families, and quickly help stop further spread of COVID-19.
“The Delta variant is much more contagious than previous variants we’ve seen, and it has dramatically increased the amount of virus in our communities. Masks have proven to be effective at bringing case counts down, and are a necessary measure right now, even in some outdoor settings, to help fight COVID and protect one another.”
The new requirement begins Friday, August 27, and applies regardless of vaccination status. The Oregon Health Authority also highly recommended masks for private outdoor gatherings when people from different households cannot consistently maintain physical distancing.
At the Governor’s direction, the OHA plans to issue a new rule on the topic. The rule does not apply to “fleeting encounters,” such as when two people walk by one another on a trail or in a park. The rule also does not apply to private settings, despite the strong recommendation from the OHA.
“It is much easier for people with the Delta variant, compared to people who were sick last year, to infect others around them,” said State Health Officer Dr. Dean Sidelinger. “This is because they have one thousand times more virus in their nose – which means that those around them are much more likely to get sick because this variant behaves so differently. We are starting to see instances where cases are clustering around events, like outdoor music festivals, that happen outdoors. Wearing masks in crowded settings – even outdoors – will help slow the spread of COVID-19.”
As with the indoor mask requirement, there are some circumstances where the mask requirement will not apply:
- Children under 5 years old;
- Individuals who are actively eating, drinking, or sleeping — as well as individuals living outdoors, such as persons experiencing houselessness;
- Persons playing or practicing competitive sports, or engaged in an activity in which it is not feasible to wear a mask — such as swimming;
- Individuals delivering a speech or performing — such as with outdoor music or theater;
- Mask requirements for day-to-day operations at K-12 schools are not governed by this rule, and will instead continue to fall under the school mask rule. Outside public events, spectator events, and gatherings of the general public on K-12 school grounds will be subject to the rule. Child care and youth programs will continue to follow existing OHA mask guidance; and
- In addition, entities subject to the ADA must continue to comply with that law.
“The combination of vaccines and masks is the most powerful way we can fight this latest surge of COVID-19 and save lives,” Brown continued. “Vaccination continues to be the best way you can protect yourself and your family from the Delta variant, and the most effective way we can help our exhausted nurses and doctors, who are working around the clock to treat Oregonians sick with COVID in our ICUs — the majority of which are unvaccinated individuals. With the full FDA approval of the Pfizer vaccine this week, we have additional reassurance that the vaccines are safe and effective.”
MEDFORD, Ore. — Jackson County has rolled out a new feature of its emergency alert system, one that will allow residents to stay updated on evacuation levels even if their area is not the subject of emergency notifications.
Jackson County is still using the Everbridge system — locally known as Citizen Alert — which allows for targeted messages to registered residents in certain areas. These alerts go out automatically to anyone with a landline, as well as anyone who registers their email or cell phone.
Sign up for Jackson County’s evacuation notifications by:
- Texting JACKSONEVACS to 888777.
- Once opted in, individuals will receive any messages for all level 1, 2 and 3 evacuation notification sent by Jackson County Emergency Management and Cities.
- A Citizen Alert account is not needed to receive messages sent through the keyword.
- A Citizen Alert account is needed to receive emergency alerts that are specific to your personal address(es).
The new addition also operates through Everbridge, but allows people to stay apprised of evacuation notices with a simple text-in process that operates separately from the existing alert system. By opting in, residents can receive all Level 1, 2, and 3 evacuation alerts issued by Jackson County and city jurisdictions.
“We are very excited to add this to our mix of alerts. This new keyword adds an option for those who prefer to be notified of any evacuation notification in Jackson County,” said Holly Powers, Jackson County Emergency Manager. “Residents are still encouraged to sign up through Citizen Alert first to receive emergency information specific to their address. These additional alerts will also help to lower the use of critical emergency touchpoints like our 911 system.”
To opt in for these evacuation alerts, you can text JACKSONEVACS to 888777. A Citizen Alert account is not needed to receive these messages.
In order to receive emergency alerts specific to your address, you do need to sign up for Citizen Alert.
The Everbridge system came under scrutiny in the wake of the Almeda Fire, when many people wondered why the broader Emergency Alert System (EAS) was not activated. An independent report issued at the beginning of June concluded that the County’s choice for alerts was a net positive in the Almeda Fire response, despite breakdowns in communication between different jurisdictions.
Governor Kate Brown released a statement on Monday advocating for OR-Alert, the state’s push to promote and unify county-level emergency alerts. According to Brown’s office, the system has been fully implemented in 26 counties and is in works for another eight counties.
Brown said that the roll-out is “timely” after a succession of severe weather events in Oregon — ice storms, extreme drought, record-breaking heat, and dangerous wildfire seasons.
“Last year’s historic fire season taught us that being prepared can truly be the difference between life and death,” said Governor Brown. “With Oregon facing increasing climate-related weather events, there’s never been a better time to make a plan with your family to be prepared. I’m urging all Oregonians to sign up for local alerts through OR-Alert and to take steps to ensure you and your family can be safe in the event of an emergency.”
OR-Alert compiles the various County alert systems, so a resident of Jackson County who visits the OR-Alert website will be directed to the Citizen Alert sign-up via Everbridge. Residents of other counties will be directed to their own systems.
Like with Jackson County, anyone in Oregon can sign up for some emergency alerts by texting their zip code to 888777, or visit www.oralert.gov to fully sign up. People can also download the Everbridge app to receive alerts.
“Between extreme weather, wildfires, and the pandemic, it became clear that our state needed a streamlined and customizable way to enable emergency managers at the local, county, Tribal, and state level to communicate with the populations they serve across the state and at a moment’s notice,” said William Chapman, Statewide Interoperability Coordinator. “OR-Alert has filled this need and is ready for Oregonians to sign up.”Read More
DATE: September 18, 2021
TIME: 9 AM – Noon
LOCATION: Shady Cove Public Works
1008 Celtic Circle
Shady Cove, OR 97539
Space is limited. Tell us your expected arrival time at https://paint-shady-cove.eventbrite.com/
NOTE: Open to Oregon residents only.
LETTER FROM JACKSON COUNTY –
I am writing to inform you of the attached order passed by the Board of Commissioners yesterday that officially closes all off-pavement areas of county owned land along the Bear Creek Greenway during fire season, as set and defined by the Oregon Department of Forestry. Coincidentally, the ODF declared fire season was effective yesterday in tandem with the passage of the order. The order is now in effect and users must remain on paved surfaces while using the trail on county property. County ordinance provides the Board the ability to close portions of the greenway to protect the health or safety of the public or the safety of the Greenway or its facilities, specifically including during fire hazards.
Our Sheriff’s office, along with our Parks program will manage the issue, beginning with initially educating users, then proceeding with enforcement of the issue for users that do not comply. Violating the closure can lead to a 2nd degree criminal trespass charge. Please note that the closure applies to all users of the greenway and is not limited to camping.
It is important to clarify that the order does not apply to private, city, state or other non-county owned lands along the greenway. I encourage you to consider similar measures to help prevent a repeat of recent events.
Jackson County AdministratorRead More
MEDFORD, Ore– Widespread rain along with lowering temperatures across Southern Oregon has been a welcome sight to many Oregonians and firefighters across the area.
Thanks to that that widespread rain, on Saturday, the Oregon Department of Forestry Southwest District announced that effective Sunday, at 12:01 a.m., the public fire danger level will be decreasing to moderate and the industrial fire precaution level (IFPL) will decrease to one across Jackson and Josephine Counties.
That means that Saturday will be the last day power-driven and/or spark-emitting machinery is completely prohibited.
However several restrictions will continue to remain in place even with IFPL decreasing including:
• No debris burning, including piles and debris burned in burn barrels.
• No fireworks on or within 1/8 of a mile of forestlands.
• Exploding targets and tracer ammunition, or any bullet with a pyrotechnic charge in its base, are prohibited.
• Campfires are allowed only in designated campgrounds. Portable stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels may be used in other locations.
• Motorized vehicles are allowed only on improved roads; one shovel and one gallon of water, or one 2.5 pound or larger fire extinguisher, is required while traveling.
• Smoking while traveling will only be allowed in enclosed vehicles on improved roads, in boats on the water and other specifically designated locations.
• Chain saws may not be used between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. during high fire danger. During hours outside of this time frame, chain saws may be used but require that the operator have one shovel and one 8-oz or larger fire extinguisher at the work site. A fire watch is also required for one hour after each chainsaw use.
• Cutting, grinding, and welding of metal is not allowed between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. during high fire danger. These activities will be allowed during hours outside of this time frame only if the work site is cleared of potentially flammable vegetation and other materials, and a water supply is at the job site.
• The mowing of dead or dried grass with power-driven equipment is not allowed between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. during high fire danger. This restriction does not include mowing of green lawns, or equipment used for the commercial culture and harvest of agricultural crops.
• Any other spark-emitting internal combustion engine-use not specifically mentioned is not allowed between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. during high fire danger. Use of any spark-emitting internal combustion engine is allowed outside of this time frame only if the work site is cleared of potentially flammable vegetation and other materials, and a water supply is at the job site.
• Any electric fence controllers must be approved by a nationally recognized testing laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories Inc., or be certified by the Department of Consumer and Business Services, and be installed and used in compliance with the fence controller’s instructions for fire safe operation.Read More
If someone in your household has electricity-dependent medical needs, please contact Pacific Power at 1-888-221-7070. Pacific Power relies on customers to self-identify medical needs dependent on electricity so they can provide additional outreach prior to a Public Safety Power Shutoff. Learn more at pacificpower.net/psps.
You are able to use the following website to gain more access in regard to getting vaccinations.
It will include separate information and links to GetVaccinatedOregon.
You will also be able to access information by either emailing ORCOVID@211info.org
or by calling 211
or by calling 1-866-698-6155
or by texting ORCOVID to 898211