October 2021
Pfizer booster shots available to eligible groups
Booster doses are now available to the following people who were vaccinated with the Pfizer vaccine six months after their second dose:

  • People 65 and older should get a booster.
  • People living in a long-term care facility should get a booster.
  • People 50-64 with underlying medical conditions should get a booster.
  • People 18-64 with underlying medical conditions or who are at a higher risk of exposure to COVID-19 due to where they live or work may get a booster.

Eligible individuals are strongly encouraged to seek booster doses at medical offices and local pharmacies, or by calling the COVID-19 Call Center at 541-766-6120. At this week's currently scheduled vaccination clinics, a very limited amount of Pfizer boosters doses will be available to eligible individuals on a first come, first served basis. 

Those seeking booster doses should bring their vaccination card to their appointment and be prepared to self-attest that they meet eligibility guidelines announced late last week. Information about Pfizer booster eligibility is available from the Oregon Health Authority.

Upcoming vaccination clinics

Benton County is collaborating with the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) and public school districts in the county to host ongoing vaccination clinics in Philomath, Alsea, Corvallis, and Monroe.

Individuals 12 and older are eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine at these events. All individuals who receive their 1st or 2nd dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at these clinics will receive a $100 gift card and a nonperishable food box, while supplies last.

County Transit Program updates brand and services

Anyone driving around the Corvallis area may have noticed new buses driving around, and thought, “what is BAT?” Benton Area Transit’s (BAT) brand launched only a few months ago, however the County’s transit program has been transporting people in and around Benton County for decades.

It’s with the hope of providing a system that works for everyone that Brad Dillingham, Benton County transit coordinator, envisioned a new brand for the transit program. “Benton County received special transportation funds since 1985,” said Dillingham. “We use that money to contract with a local provider to provide special transportation, regional transit and ADA Paratransit services. The entire time we’ve been providing this important service, we didn’t have a recognizable brand, so the community came to know the services by the name of the contractor.”

Branding the transit program as Benton Area Transit provides the community with better clarity of who is providing their transit services. “It creates better transparency. With a recognizable brand, people know who is providing their transit services and we’re better able to market those services to new riders.”

A new name and bus wraps isn’t all, since launching as BAT, the program started a new route between North Albany and Corvallis, known as the North Albany Service. BAT has also reduced prices on the Coast to Valley Express by half, allowing riders to bus from Corvallis to Newport for $5.  

And hoping to better serve its riders, BAT is launching its first “Outreach October” this year. During the month of October, everyone that lives, works and plays in Benton County are invited to participate in a short survey and get entered to win one of twenty $25 Bi-Mart gift cards.

Next Community Meeting scheduled for October 13

The community wants a modern justice system that builds trust, provides safety, holds offenders accountable, and provides treatment to help people rejoin the community as productive neighbors, parents, and family members.  

Benton County is working hard to learn from our community by listening to ideas, concerns and opportunities in order to craft a final proposal that has wide support. Through small group meetings, speaking engagements, one-to-one conversations, and large online meetings, we want to reach as many people as possible in 2021. To learn more about our public outreach efforts, take a look at our Public Involvement Plan

Join the conversation about how to build an equitable, effective, and safe justice system for all Benton County residents at our next Virtual Community Meeting.

Congressman Peter DeFazio
Representative Dan Rayfield
*All attendees wore face coverings at this event. While outdoors, elected representatives spoke without face coverings at a distance of over 6 feet from masked attendees.

Congressman DeFazio and Representative Rayfield tour future County Crisis Center

Congressman Peter DeFazio and Representative Dan Rayfield toured the future location of Benton County’s Crisis Center on September 2, 2021. The Fifth Street facility currently houses the Board of Commissioners, County Administration, Information Technology, and County Counsel. The County will repurpose the facility to support individuals in need of immediate behavioral health assistance. County services that currently reside in the facility will relocate to the County's Kalapuya facility at 4500 SW Research Way.

County staff worked with state and federal legislators to raise funds for Phase 1 of the building remodel. Under the American Rescue Plan, which Congressman DeFazio worked to pass through Congress, Representative Rayfield was able to allocate $1.25 million in relief dollars for the project. Congressman DeFazio also secured an additional $1 million for the project in the House-passed 2022 funding bill. 

County awards non-lethal deterrents grants
The Agricultural and Wildlife Protection Program awarded over $14,000 in non-lethal deterrents grants last month.

Agricultural operations in Benton County that wish to prevent conflicts with wildlife could apply for up to $5,000 in reimbursement grant funds for the purchase of proactive non-lethal wildlife deterrents to protect livestock and crops.

Do you have a monster in your closet?

After more than a year and a half of the COVID-19 pandemic, are you feeling a little cramped? Feeling like there’s too much stuff and not enough space?

If your excess stuff includes electronics that you no longer use, you’re in good company!

Over two-thirds of households in Oregon report that they have old, unused electronics taking up space in their home. And many share the concern that they want to dispose of them safely, to keep our state free from the hazardous materials they may contain such as lead and mercury that can harm people and wildlife.

Here’s the good news: In Oregon, it’s free and easy to safely recycle TVs, computers, printers, monitors and tablets through a no-cost statewide program known as Oregon E-Cycles. The program ensures that harmful materials like lead and mercury often found in older electronics are kept out of our air, soil and water. Visit EcycleOregon.org or call 888-532-9253 to find your nearest e-cycling location!


Benton County Public Information Office
541-766-6843 | pioinfo@co.benton.or.us