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

> Give us your news tips.

> Send us a letter to the editor.

> More Herald contact information.

More in Local News

Snohomish residents Barbara Bailey, right, and Beth Jarvis sit on a gate atop a levee on Bailey’s property on Monday, May 13, 2024, at Bailey Farm in Snohomish, Washington. Bailey is concerned the expansion of nearby Harvey Field Airport will lead to levee failures during future flood events due to a reduction of space for floodwater to safely go. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Harvey Field seeks to reroute runway in floodplain, faces new pushback

Snohomish farmers and neighbors worry the project will be disruptive and worsen flooding. Ownership advised people to “read the science.”

IAM District 751 machinists join the picket line to support Boeing firefighters during their lockout from the company on Thursday, May 16, 2024, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Amid lockout, Boeing, union firefighters return to bargaining table

The firefighters and the planemaker held limited negotiations this week: They plan to meet again Monday, but a lockout continues.

N3054V accident site. (Alaska State Trooper Photo)
Lake Stevens pilot, who lived ‘Alaska dream,’ died in Fairbanks crash

Former Snohomish County lawyer Harry “Ray” Secoy III, 63, worked as a DC-4 pilot in Alaska in the last years of his life.

Air and ground search and rescue teams found Jerry Riedinger’s plane near Humpback Mountain on Monday. (WSDOT photo)
Remains of pilot recovered near Snoqualmie Pass after Arlington flight

Jerry Riedinger never made it to Ephrata after departing the Arlington airport Sunday. Investigators have not determined the cause of the crash.

Federal prosecutors say the two men shown here outside the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, are Tucker Weston, left, and Jesse Watson. (U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia)
Lynnwood roommates sentenced for roles in Jan. 6 riot

Tucker Weston was given two years in prison Thursday. Jesse Watson received three years of probation in August 2023.

Lynnwood firm faces $790K in fines for improper asbestos handling

State regulators said this is the fifth time Seattle Asbestos of Washington violated “essential” safety measures.

A truck towing a travel trailer crashed into a home in the Esperance neighborhood Thursday, May 23, 2024, in Edmonds, Washington. (South County Fire)
Man seriously injured after his truck rolls into Edmonds home

One resident was inside the home in the 22500 block of 8th Avenue W, but wasn’t injured, fire officials said.

Ferry workers wait for cars to start loading onto the M/V Kitsap on Friday, Dec. 1, 2023 in Mukilteo, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
The Memorial Day holiday weekend travel nightmare is upon us

Going somewhere this weekend? You’ll have lots of company — 44 million new BFFs — on planes, trains and automobiles.

Bothell family says racism at Seattle Children’s led to teen’s death

In February 2021, Sahana Ramesh, the daughter of Indian immigrants, died after months of suffering from a rare disease.

Boeing Firefighters and supporters have a camp set up outside of Boeing on Airport Road as the company’s lockout of union firefighters approaches two weeks on Thursday, May 16, 2024, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Union firefighters reject Boeing’s latest contract offer

The union’s 125 firefighters on Wednesday overwhelmingly rejected the offer, which included “an improved wage growth” schedule

A “No Shooting” sign on DNR land near Spada Lake is full of bullet holes on Thursday, Feb. 8, 2024, along Sultan Basin Road near Sultan, Washington. People frequent multiple locations along the road to use firearms despite signage warning them not to. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
County pumps the brakes on planned Sultan shooting range

The $47 million project, in the works for decades, has no partner or funding. County parks officials are reconsidering its viability.

Suzan DelBene, left, Rick Larsen
Larsen, DelBene request over $40M for projects in Snohomish County

If approved, Congress would foot the bill for traffic fixes, public transit, LED lights and much more around the county.

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.