Jackson County Voters Reject Anti-Planning Initiatives on May Ballot

Jackson County voters resoundingly rejected two anti-planning initiatives on the May 15 ballot. 1000 Friends worked with local residents and partner organizations to defeat the measures, and celebrates the victory.

Intended to revive the ghost of Measure 37 and funded in part by Americans for Prosperity, the measures were both defeated with solid majorities.

Measure 15-110 would have required Jackson County to formally and repeatedly express its opposition to statewide land use planning, while Measure 15-111 would have reinstated Measure 37-style compensation for Jackson County planning. The Mail Tribune, local business leaders, and several county commissioners all opposed the measures as a waste of county time and money, and a distraction from more important issues. Measure 15-110 was defeated by roughly 17 percentage points; Measure 15-111 was defeated by roughly 20 percentage points.

In this election, Jackson County voters made a clear statement that support for Oregon land use planning is not divided along rural and urban lines. They showed that they want to move on from long-dead land use battles and focus on the real issues facing the county.

The vote also comes as the Regional Problem Solving long-term planning project nears completion, which will give the Bear Creek Valley a clear vision and direction for the decades ahead. With this vote, Jackson County has shown its confidence in the ability of such a collaborative plan to protect irreplaceable farmland, support a thriving economy, and create great communities throughout the region.

For more on the election, read this article from the Mail Tribune.