It’s official: Deputies to cover shifts

City, county come to terms amid police staffing crisis

By RICK MORAIN

For The Jefferson Herald

The Greene County board of supervisors and the Jefferson city council this week approved a temporary joint 28E agreement under which the Greene County Sheriff’s Office will supplement law enforcement in Jefferson until the end of September 2021.

Sheriff Jack Williams is also a party to the joint agreement.

The agreement came after the city council voted Sept. 8 to reopen the city’s current negotiated agreement with its police force to consider raising salary levels. That agreement was scheduled to expire June 30, 2021.

Jefferson Police Chief Mark Clouse told the county supervisors at their Monday morning meeting that his department is currently short three officers because they have taken positions elsewhere. Some of them have moved to the sheriff’s office.

Under the agreement, which begins Oct. 1, the sheriff and his deputies will cover up to 15 12-hour shifts for the police department per calendar month. Their schedule will be developed by the sheriff and the police chief before the first of each month.

Services to be provided by the sheriff’s office for the city of Jefferson include routine patrols and door checks, enforcement of state laws, investigation of suspected criminal activity at the discretion of the sheriff, and specialized traffic and vehicle operation enforcement.

Sheriff’s deputies will also take part in court proceedings arising from arrests made for the city of Jefferson.

The sheriff’s office will also provide a half-time administrative support services employee to do clerical tasks at the request of Jefferson police.

The city of Jefferson will pay Greene County for the services at the following rates:

• $1,000 per shift covered by the sheriff’s law enforcement personnel.

• An administrative services fee of $1,750 per calendar month.

• $60 per hour for additional duties of sheriff’s deputies during times when they would otherwise be off duty.

The city may terminate the half-time administrative support position at its discretion.

The agreement also provides that the county and the sheriff may terminate the agreement if any of the following fails to occur:

• The completion of job candidate interviews for at least two new Jefferson police officers by Oct. 30.

• The extension of conditional job offers to at least two new police officers by Nov. 13, so long as they successfully complete testing usually required of a new officer.

• The extension of formal job offers to at least two new police officers by Dec. 8.

The county supervisors adopted the agreement Monday morning and the Jefferson city council adopted it at its Tuesday evening meeting.

Williams waited until both public bodies had first approved the agreement, then he signed it as well.

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