PENDLETON — The Umatilla County Republican Party is hosting town halls the next two weeks in Pendleton, Hermiston and Milton-Freewater on the Nov. 5 special election.

Umatilla County voters get to decide on two measures that would change the county charter. One would change “Law Enforcement Department” in the charter to “Sheriff’s Office.” That would align with the name of the sheriff’s office as well as reflect the position of sheriff is an elected official.

The second measure would change the election of county officials to the November election and only require a primary election if more than two candidates filed in a race.

Umatilla County Commissioners will talk about the measures. The town halls start at 6:30 p.m., and also will provide information on the local proposals that would affect each community.

• The Pendleton town hall is Oct. 15 in the meeting room at 501 S.W. Emigrant Ave. Commissioner George Murdock will address the county measure, and a representative from the Pendleton Fire and Ambulance Service will provide information on the five-year local option tax for fire protection services, which Pendleton residents will decide during the election.

• The Hermiston town hall is Oct. 23 at Armand Larive Middle School, 1497 S.W. Ninth St. with Commissioner Bill Elfering. Echo voters get to decide on continuing the levy tax to support the Echo Rural Fire Protection District. Fire Chief Delbert Gehrke will speak on the measure. And Hermiston schools Superintendent Tricia Mooney will discuss the district’s $89 million bond proposal that will be on the ballot.

• And the Milton-Freewater town hall is Oct. 25 at the Community Building, 109 N.E. Fifth St. Commissioner John Shaffer will be on hand for the county measures. Milton-Freewater voters also decide on a measure to fund the Milton-Freewater Rural Fire Department and the Ambulance Service.

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