June 18, 2009

City law enforcement contract decreases cost, keeps coverage

By Brenda L. Shelkey

Underwood commissioners know a good thing when they see it. Last year when McLean County determined that the law enforcement costs needed to be more equally distributed across the county, Underwood got the best end of the deal. They began seeing a decrease in the cost for the city. Recently county commissioners approved the 2010 law enforcement contract for Underwood and the city will see a $3,100 decrease. Commissioners were concerned that the Underwood community be told that the law enforcement coverage will stay the same. Mayor Rick Olson said, "This is an attempt to equalize the coverage across McLean County. The cost to Underwood will be $4,333 per month for one and one-half deputies, which is the same coverage we have had." Commissioners discussed that the coverage for Underwood has been more than satisfactory. They agreed that the presence of an officer with the addition of the drug dog being located in Underwood was an asset to the community. Auditor Diane Schell will be working on the Hazard Mitigation Grant through FEMA. She told commissioners that the FEMA monies will be coming in shortly and there are some decisions to be made. She said, "There are three parts to the program: the initial clean-up, the final clean-up and now the final mitigation. Commissioners will need to consider whether the city needs to do a temporary or more permanent option to repair the problems that occurred during the flooding this spring."



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