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Ashland's Public Works Hoping to Speed up T.A.P. Pipeline Project
By Aaron Nilsson/KTVL.comASHLAND, Ore. -- Ashland's public works will ask the city council to approve shifting money from other projects to fund the “T.A.P. Pipeline.”

The water line will bring water from Talent and Phoenix to the city of Ashland.

Originally the project was going to cost more than 2 million dollars, but now the city said it will be more than 4 million.

Public Works Director, Mike Faught, said the department underestimated the project's cost.

“What we don't want is to get into the middle of the project and find out we don't have sufficient funding, so we're asking for the loan of the entire 4.4 million available, but we don't have to spend it all. If we can do it and don't need those contingencies, then we won't use them,” Faught said.

Faught said the city is planning on worst-case scenario and trying to speed up the process.     

Faught also said the normal contract bidding process takes a month or two, but he hopes the city council also approves limiting bidding to five contractors so the project can be completed by August 15th.

Rogue Gang numbers in
By Caitlin Conrad/KTVL.com

MEDFORD, Ore – Jackson County's Gang Task Force has spent the past couple years surveying students, staff, and parents, about gang activity. On Tuesday night they handed that information back to the community so people can use it. 

The quantitative data shows more than 70% of the adults surveyed thought gangs were a problem. However, only 20 to 30% of students thought gang activity was an issue at their school.  

Organizers say the biggest population interview was students, and they say 4,100 kids took the survey. Six percent of those teens also admitted to being in a gang, or being a former gang member, which, equals out to about 200 children.

Jackson County Juvenile Services Deputy Director, Joe Ferguson, says Medford Police have 346 documented gang members on file. Police say the largest gang in southern Oregon, is the Surenos with 183 listed members, and the Nortenos is the second biggest, with 81 people on file. 

Ferguson says a crackdown on gang activity and an increase in prevention work is helping and the student perspective on gang activity reflects that. 

ASHLAND, Ore. -- Ashland city leaders are planning to discuss funding for the s-called "tap line" tonight.

The water line will bring water from Talent and Phoenix to the City of Ashland. 

Originally, the project was going to cost just over $2 million. Now, the city says it will be $4 million.

The public works department says the extra funding will keep water costs down. 

The council could vote as early as tonight on whether to move forward with the project and how to fund it. 

GRANTS PASS, Ore. -- More details are emerging in the investigation into the alleged murder of a missing man by a Murphy woman.
Jacquelyn Novack has been indicted on charges including murder and evidence tampering. 

Investigators found the remains of the unidentified man at a remote campsite in Sunny Valley. At Novack's indictment, investigators stated evidence shows the man in his mid-30s was killed by a gunshot wound around Nov.1, according to the Grants Pass Daily Courier. 

Novack was arrested in Eugene earlier this month on an unrelated warrant. 

MEDFORD, Ore. -- The only child abduction response team in Oregon will now be headed up by the Jackson County Sheriff's Office. 

The Southern Oregon Regional Child Abduction Response Team, also known as SO-CART, is one of 20 teams of its kind in the country. 

It is designed to be a rapid response team in the event of a child abduction and has members all around Southern Oregon. 

In addition, the county has set up a regional AMBER alert center. 

MEDFORD, Ore. -- The budget committee at Rogue Community College says tuition rates will remain as they are through next year. 

The school says it received more funding from the state. However, it still has less money than it did in 2008. 

RCC is expected to receive about $8 million from the Oregon Community College support fund. 


CURRY COUNTY, Ore. -- A workshop is planned for tomorrow in Curry County to discuss the practice of aerial pesticide spraying. 

The workshop will be held from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Gold Beach High School cafeteria. 

Topics to discuss include establishing rules for aerial spraying and the health concerns of forestry herbicides. 

Representatives from Oregon Department of Forestry and Oregon Department of Agriculture plan to attend.

Woman indicted in campsite slaying
GRANTS PASS, Ore. (AP) — A Southern Oregon woman has been indicted on a charge of murder in the slaying of a man whose body was found at a remote campsite.

The Grants Pass Daily Courier reports  that 38-year-old Jacquelyn Kelly Novack of Murphy was indicted Friday on charges of murder, tampering with evidence and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

She was arrested two weeks ago in Eugene on a probation violation, and the same day authorities discovered the body at a campsite near Sunny Valley.

The man's name has not been released, but court records say he was killed with a gun on Nov. 1.

State police say the investigation began three weeks ago when they got a report of a missing person who was believed to be dead.


Information from: Daily Courier
Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

Southern Oregon farmers divided over GMO ban issue
GRANTS PASS, Ore. (AP) — Two counties in Southern Oregon are headed for May votes on banning genetically modified crops — measures that divide farmers.

The Legislature prohibited such local bans but made an exception in Jackson County, where a measure had qualified for a vote.

Since then a similar measure made the ballot in neighboring Josephine County. If it passes, its backers say, they'll ask the courts to uphold it.

Farmers for the bans say pollen from fields of genetically modified beets threatens organic farms that produce seeds for crops of chard, and they worry about the high use of the herbicide Roundup that goes with GMO crops.

Other farmers say the modified crops aren't much different from strains developed by cross-breeding over the centuries, and they don't want the interference in their operations.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

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