By News-Register staff • 

Amity will contract with sheriff's office

AMITY - The Amity City Council voted Thursday night to contract with the Yamhill County Sheriff's Office for law enforcement services rather than retain its own police department.

Councilor Max Walker made a motion to contract with the agency for 2.5 FTE (full-time equivalent) beginning Saturday, Dec. 1, at a cost of about $117,000 a year for one FTE. He said the city would expect to receive 100 hours of weekly coverage, seven days a week, with an emphasis on the 2 p.m. to midnight time frame. The service would be dedicated to the city, according to Walker. The cost does not include Yamhill Communications Agency (911) dues that currently are about $20,000 annually.

There is $281,000 in the Amity Police Department budget for fiscal year 2018-19.

The motion received a second and passed, 3-2, with one abstention. In addition to Walker, William Daley and Josh Simonson voted in favor. Dawn King and Rudy van Soolen were opposed. Caralyn Miller abstained. Following the vote, she explained her stand, saying she favored keeping the police department intact, but she did not realistically see that happening.

King has always been ademently opposed to contacting with the sheriff's office. Van soolen is a former Amity Police Chief. Their terms will end Dec. 31 and they are not running for re-election.

There was also a motion to table any action until the 7 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 5, council meeting. It failed, 3-2.

"We do need to make a decision tonight," Mayor Michael Cape said. "We've been discussing this for a year and a half."

City Administrator Justin Hogue and Sheriff Tim Svenson will now negotiate a contract. It will be for multiple years, as Svenson has told Hogue that he would not be interested in a one-year contract. Hogue has resigned to take an administrative position with Yamhill County. His last day is Friday, Nov. 23, so a contract is expected to be finalized in the next three weeks.

Police Chief Chris Bolek plans to retire, effective at the end of the year. However, as soon as the sheriff's office takes over, Bolek is expected to leave the city.

In other business, the council voted to go in-house and fill the administrator's position on an interim basis. Cape and Simonson both applied for the job when Larry Layton resigned and Hogue was hired. Cape said at the meeting that he will not apply for the permanent position again.

See Tuesday's News-Register for additional details.

 

Comments

Mac Native 66

STUPID MOVE ON Amity's PART. I'D SAY THAT THE CITIZENS WILL VOTE OUT ALL MEMBERS OF CITY COUNSEL INCLUDING THE MAYOR. THIS IS THE 21st CENTURY NOT THE 19th CENTURY AND NOT HAVING CITY POLICE.

Yamhill Truth Serum

This is so unfair to James and his young family to be displaced right before Christmas. I've watched James since he was a kid build strong connections to the community, be active in his community and really care about the people of Amity. He knows them and their histories which is worth it's weight in gold when talking about community policing James has provided stable a fair public safety and hasn't been a "law enforcement officer" which just brings more ire and disdain to police agencies. Policing is about relationships when will government figure that out? Shame on the council and especially the abstention who might have changed the outcome.

Longmire fan

How is this unfair to James? He’s openly advertising that he is moving to Nevada to work for Jesse Watts-Eureka County Sheriff. Check out the Facebook page for Watts’ election campaign and see James in uniform being represented as undersheriff candidate.

Yamhill Truth Serum

Longmire, thanks for the update the last I had heard James applied for the position of Chief after Dan left but it looks like he's moving on. Good for him!

TTT

What will happen with Sgt. Clark from Amity?

sbagwell

That's who the earlier posts were referring to. He's taking a sheriff's office job in Nevada.
Steve

TTT

Thank you Steve.

Here is the address of the video referenced above.

https://www.facebook.com/electjessesheriff/videos/1826121420739787/

Joel

Well, one positive about this is that I won't have to be so paranoid about keeping my speed at 30pmh as I go through Amity.