Government: County Justice Open House Draws 200, Courthouse Builder Picked, New Parks Director Sought

JSIP Open House: Nearly 200 community members attended an open house hosted by Benton County for the Justice System Improvement Program (JSIP) on Feb. 8. County officials were there to answer questions and update the community on the overall vision for the project.  

In a release from the county, staff and elected officials presented concept plans for the downtown Corvallis Mental Health Crisis Center, the Community Safety & Justice Campus, and the new Courthouse and District Attorney’s office ahead of the May 2023 bond measure that will go before voters.  

Commissioners voted unanimously to set the bond amount at $110 million. The cost would be approximately $150 – $155 per year for a Benton County home with an average tax-assessed value of $266,000 or market value of about $450,000. 

The total estimated cost for the total facilities is $179 million and it’s separated into two phases. Phase one of the program is fully funded and includes the new courthouse and District Attorney’s office. It will be funded with County borrowing and a 50% state matching grant for the courthouse. Phase two facilities include those that will be covered in the bond that will go before the voters, which would primarily be spending for the jail and new sheriff’s headquarters, with an estimated 5% going to mental health and homeless services. 

Click to learn more about the project or watch the video on YouTube. 

Construction Contract: At the Feb. 7 Benton County Commissioners meeting, commissioners voted to award a construction contract for two of the facilities included in the Justice System Improvement Program.  

The Construction Manager/General Contractor (CM/GC) contract for the Benton County Courthouse and District Attorney facilities was awarded to Hoffman Construction. These two facilities will be part of bond measure, half the cost of the courthouse will be covered by matching funds from the state, and the county has borrowed the rest. 

Benton County Hiring: Benton County announced a new vacancy for the Director of Natural Areas, Parks and Events (NAPE).  

The NAPE Director administers, provides leadership, plans, directs, and evaluates the activities and functions of the department. This position is responsible for operation and the overall management and direction of Benton County parks, natural areas, fairgrounds, Benton Oaks RV Park, Salmonberry Campground, Crystal Lake Cemetery, Adair Clubhouse, and the Alsea Guard Station. 

For more information and to view additional vacancies. 

By Jennifer Williams  

Do you have a story for The Advocate? Email