April 12, 2017

County upping cities’ portion of policing costs

 
BY SUZANNE WERRE
BHG News Service
McLean County commissioners approved increasing what cities pay for police coverage by 5 percent for the 2018 contract, citing increasing expenses for the sheriff’s department.
Asking for a 4 percent increase in his initial motion, Commissioner Steve Lee rescinded the original motion, changing the increase to 5 percent.
County Auditor Les Korgel noted that some of the cities in the county are decreasing their amount of coverage.
Commissioner Barry Suydam wondered aloud if enacting a 5 percent increase for the cities would cause some cities to not renew their contracts, to which Commission Chairman Doug Krebsbach and Lee answered that that would be the cities’ option.
Lee noted that the county’s share of law enforcement costs has been increasing for years, and it’s the commission’s responsibility to keep the expenses in check.
“This contract also includes jail costs that we’re picking up with this contract,” added Lee. “That’s a benefit of that contract that’s variable – you don’t see it in black and white – it changes every year. I think we need to be on that road where we at least don’t go backwards.”

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