Sultan looks at cutting two police officers to save money


Herald Writer

SULTAN — City council members are looking at cutting two police officers as they prepare the 2001 city budget.

They are planning a 6 percent increase in the city’s property tax levy, the maximum amount allowed by state law.

Police Chief Fred Walser said he is looking for ways to cut his budget that don’t involved eliminating officers so he can save the integrity of his department.

In the budget proposed by city administrator Roy Bysegger, the number of officers would be reduced in 2001 from eight to six. That would save the city about $50,000, along with cuts in police travel and seminars, and equipment maintenance and repairs.

Other cuts in personnel also are planned, including a utility worker, a building inspector and a part-time assistant planner.

The budget will be addressed at 7 p.m. Wednesday (at the Sultan Community Center, 319 Main St., during which public comments will be taken.

A second hearing and final action is expected Dec. 6.

The police budget was scrutinized by Bysegger and Mayor C.H. Rowe after some council members wanted to contract for police services with the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office in an effort to save money.

When a majority of the council said no to that idea, the proposed police budget was cut from $1 million to $872,000.

If the council chooses to cut officers, Walser said response times will suffer. The current response time is an average of 1.5 to 2 minutes. He told the council that calls are increasing because of growth and increased traffic on U.S. 2.

Overall, the city budget calls for $1.7 million in general fund expenditures, up from $1.6 million this year.

Bysegger said that because the city doesn’t have much sales tax revenue, it needs to rely on property tax hikes and on an increase of 2 percent in the business and occupation tax. While there are plans for a commercial and industrial park, the economic activity from that will not be realized this year.

The preliminary budget calls for permit fees for new construction to remain on the same growth level as this year.

Talk to us

More in Local News

NO CAPTION NECESSARY: Logo for the Cornfield Report by Jerry Cornfield. 20200112
Retooling drug laws, protecting octopus and honoring a cactus

It’s already Day 26. Here’s what’s happening in the 2023 session of the Washington Legislature

Arif Ghouseat flips through his work binder in his office conference room Paine Field on Monday, Dec. 10, 2018 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Paine Field Airport director departing for Sea-Tac job

Arif Ghouse, who oversaw the launch of commercial air travel at Paine Field, is leaving after eight years.

Students make their way after school at Edmonds-Woodway High School on March 12, 2020. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
After Edmonds schools internet outage, staff ‘teaching like it’s the 1900s’

“Suspicious activities” on the district’s network delayed classes and caused schedule havoc. “Kids are using pencil and paper again.”

April Berg, left, and John Lovick
Snohomish County legislators talk race, policy in Seattle

Rep. April Berg and Sen. John Lovick chatted about Tyre Nichols and education at an event kicking off Black History Month.

Tala Davey-Wraight, 3, is thrown in the air by her dad Oscar Davey-Wraight, one of the Summer Meltdown headliners also known as Opiuo, during Cory Wong’s set on Thursday, July 28, 2022 in Snohomish, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
After Monroe debut, no Summer Meltdown music fest in 2023

Organizers announced Wednesday they would “take the year off in order to figure out the best path forward for Summer Meltdown in 2024.”

Logo for news use featuring Snohomish County, Washington. 220118
High winds in Everett, north Puget Sound expected Friday

Winds could top 40 mph in Everett — and likely higher farther north — causing power outages and tree damage.

Logo for news use featuring the municipality of Mountlake Terrace in Snohomish County, Washington. 220118
Mountlake Terrace council taps planning commissioner for open seat

With five votes, Rory Paine-Donovan was affirmed to join the ranks of the Mountlake Terrace City Council.

Federal agents seized many pounds of meth and heroin, along with thousands of suspected fentanyl pills, at a 10-acre property east of Arlington in mid-December 2020. (U.S. Attorney’s Office) 20201223
Leader of Snohomish County fentanyl, meth ring gets federal prison

A search of Cesar Valdez-Sanudo’s property in Arlington unearthed kilos of drugs and hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Karla Wislon holds a champagne glass while celebrating the closing sale of her home in Palm Springs, Ca. on May 14, 2021. (Family photo)
Former state Rep. Karla Wilson, 88, remembered as ‘smart, energetic’

Wilson served the 39th Legislative district from 1985 to 1991. She died Dec. 31.

Most Read