I have resided within Clatsop County since 1971. During that period of time I was employed as an Oregon State Peace Officer with the University of Oregon assigned to Job Corps, a member of the Astoria Police Department and a part-time jail deputy. Working in this field of law enforcement, I had occasion to become involved in the workings of the Clatsop County jail.
I am familiar with many of the problems of the working conditions that staff have had to contend with. The cramped space where staff is required to work, the lack of living space that prisoners have to share, and the ongoing conditions that sometimes cause safety concerns for both staff and those incarcerated.
We have a great opportunity to move the jail from its confined area to a facility presently known as the former North Coast Youth Correctional facility, located just a few blocks from the sheriff’s office. I have visited these buildings many times while serving on the Warrenton-Hammond School Board, attending work sessions and graduation ceremonies of the youth who completed their certificate of learning.
The buildings have great potential to hold and help and treat prisoners. Sheriff Tom Bergin, a strong proponent of remodeling the youth facility for our jail, and leading the movement to lead presentations to promote the bond throughout Clatsop County, has my strong support. I ask our citizens to look at all accessible information and attend discussions that may help inform.
Melvin (Mel) Jasmin