The Pine County Board approved of some department restructuring at their June 15 meeting.
The Sheriff’s department will be removing two part-time deputy positions to make room for a full-time slot. This change would help create groups of patrol deputies led by a Sergeant. Board member Matt Ludwig says this will help with cohesiveness among working groups and law enforcement coverage in the county.
"The Public has a huge expectation of our law enforcement," Ludwig said. "When someone is calling 911, they need somebody."
The board also discussed a request from Sheriff Nelson to add a Lieutenant position and hire an additional Sergeant. According to minutes from the June 7 personnel committee meeting, the Lieutenant position would absorb some of the administrative duties done by Sergeants and oversee investigations.
The board later approved of removal of the Sentence-To-Serve program (STS), which will free up around $87,000 in the department’s budget to help pay for additions.
Sheriff Nelson says the STS program is not being utilized enough and is a common discussion during budget meetings. He went onto tell the board that eligible inmates are more often sent for treatment over keeping them in jail.
The Sentence to Serve Program will end on August 31, 2021.