County offices open for business, closed to public access

Wednesday, August 25, 2021

**CORRECTION** The previous version of this release incorrectly stated "controlled handgun license." This has been corrected to "concealed handgun license."

Beginning Monday, August 30, Benton County will close lobbies and meeting spaces to public access until further notice. Lobby closures do not apply to the Community Health Centers of Benton and Linn Counties. County services continue to be available online or over the phone, and in some cases, in-person by appointment. Board of Commissioner meetings and advisory committee meetings will remain open to the public and are available online through GoToMeeting.

These service adjustments are made in response to an increase in COVID-19 cases and a rise in hospitalizations throughout the County and entire state. “Benton County is once again implementing risk reduction measures in order to protect our community by limiting the spread of COVID-19,” said County Administrator Joe Kerby. “Since the beginning of the pandemic, Benton County has sought to find adaptable solutions that enable us to build a resilient organization and provide the best service possible to our community.”

Last week, the Benton County Board of Commissioners acting in capacity as the Board of Health, passed Order #D2021-063 requiring outdoor masking when individuals are unable to physically distance in crowded settings. This was in response to the rapid rise of Delta cases and hospital case counts, and quickly followed Governor Brown’s statewide indoor mask requirement for all individuals, whether vaccinated or not. On Tuesday, the Governor announced a statewide outdoor mask requirement, effective Friday, August 27, to help stop the spread of the delta variant and reduce cases and hospitalizations. 

Although there is limited public access to county buildings, the following county business operations will continue to serve the public as listed below.

The following departments are available online, by phone, mail, email, or in-person by appointment:

Assessment

Board of Commissioners Office

The County will continue to utilize GoToMeeting and provide public access to Board of Commissioner meetings. County officials strongly encourage all individuals that are able to use the video link or phone number provided to listen to meetings from home. For best results, staff have found that downloading and using the GoToMeeting app is the best way to listen to or view the meeting. Individuals are encouraged to give themselves plenty of time to download the app and join the meeting before the start time. Additionally, the Board is live streaming meetings on Facebook live every first, third and fourth Tuesday. Individuals can follow Benton County at https://facebook.com/BentonCoGov.

Following each meeting, video recordings will be available on the Benton County YouTube channel. Individuals are encouraged to subscribe to the Benton County YouTube channel to be notified when the Board Meetings are posted. Visit https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEwNH7PIM0c5u7yTnTDoSWw and click the “Subscribe” button at the top right.

Community Development

There are a variety of options for submitting building permits and land use applications; please visit the department’s website for more information.

Community Health Centers

All clinics are currently staffed and will continue to see patients in-person, by phone and virtually through telehealth. Patients must call their clinic to get instructions on how to safely enter building when an in-person appointment is necessary.

Community Health Center (CHC) locations, hours and phone numbers to call and learn how to visit the clinic safely are listed at: https://www.bentonlinnhealthcenters.org/find-your-clinicprovider/clinic-names-hours-and-locations/.

  • For pharmacy information, please call 541-766-6835.
  • For dental information and instructions, please call 541-766-0123.
  • For Health Navigation services, please call 541-766-2130.
  • For updates and more information about CHC services, visit our Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/BentonLinnCHCs.

County Clerk - Records and Elections Department

For information regarding recording, licenses, voter registration and passport services, please visit online, call or email us. Appointments will remain available for services that require in-person presence.

County Counsel

Developmental Diversity

Staff are accessible virtually through telehealth visits, by phone, GoToMeeting, email, physical and virtual dropboxes, with limited in-person visits offered by appointment only.

District Attorney

The Benton County District Attorney’s Office is restricting direct public contact to the use of email, video conferencing, and telephonic communication whenever possible. Court-based operations (e.g. court hearings, grand jury, trials) are subject to Constitutional and Statutory mandates, and are primarily managed by the State Courts. Accordingly, the Benton County District Attorney’s Office will continue to operate within the parameters set forth by the Oregon Supreme Court and the State Trial Court Administrators Office. Contact the Benton County District Attorney’s Office by phone or email for questions.

Please note, the Benton County Circuit Court is a state agency and its access, calendar and limited business operations are controlled by the State of Oregon and can be viewed at: https://www.courts.oregon.gov/courts/benton/Pages/default.aspx.

Health Department – Behavioral Health

Services are conducted by phone and virtually through telehealth. Providers will call scheduled patients during time of appointment.

Crisis services remain available in-person, individuals will be screened before their appointment. Anyone presenting symptoms and/or a fever will be directed to call in and contact their primary care provider.

Health Department – Public Health

Most services have been modified to protect clients and staff, and many personnel continue to work on COVID-19 related activities. Business can be conducted online or by telephone. Health Department contacts are located at: https://www.co.benton.or.us/health/custom-contact-page/health-department....

Individuals with questions regarding COVID-19 in general are encouraged to call 541-766-6120, Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. to reach a County-staffed phone bank.

Human Resources

HR staff are available online, by phone, email, Jabber (internal only), Go to Meeting, or in-person by appointment.

Juvenile Department

Natural Areas, Parks, and Events

If you are a guest of the RV park, please contact the office for check-in procedures.

Benton County natural areas, trails and parks are open to the public. Please maintain physical distancing, avoid gathering in large groups, and wear a face covering or mask when 6’ of distancing cannot be maintained. 

Property Tax Collection - Financial Services

The property tax collection office is open by appointment only, please call or email.

Payment options:

Public Works

Sheriff’s Office

Benton County Sheriff's Office services, including concealed handgun license renewals, are by appointment only.