Monday, June 19, 2017
Monticello, NY – Sullivan County Sheriff Michael Schiff, Sullivan County Manager Josh Potosek, Sullivan County Legislature Chairman Luis Alvarez and District 5 Legislator Terri Ward are pleased to announce the coming addition of five new deputies to the Sheriff’s Office’s Road Patrol Division.
Unanimously approved by the Legislature on Thursday, June 15, the positions will augment the existing 35-man force now patrolling Sullivan County’s 1,000 square miles.
“These five patrol positions are sorely needed to ensure countywide coverage and prepare us to handle the anticipated influx of visitors and new residents to our region in the years ahead,” Sheriff Schiff explained. “I thank the Legislature for agreeing that time is of the essence – these deputies will require more than a year of training and mentorship before being given responsibility for patrolling on their own.”
“As a retired Sheriff’s deputy, I keenly understand the challenges which face a police agency even when it is fully staffed,” noted Chairman Alvarez. “Ensuring the Sheriff’s Office has the resources it needs is crucially important in these times, and taxpayers can feel confident the County continues to make public safety a priority.”
“Providing for the safety and well-being of our residents and visitors is paramount to me,” added Legislator Ward, who chairs the Public Safety and Law Enforcement Committee. “With more people headed our way in the years to come, our Sheriff’s Office will be busier than ever, and this Legislature is intent on providing them with the best staffing and tools in the most cost-effective manner possible.”
These five new positions will require approximately $500,000 from the County budget in the first year, for which there are funds available, said Potosek.
“We will draw upon monies set aside for unfilled vacancies elsewhere,” Potosek explained. “Those funds will cover not only the deputies’ salaries and benefits but also their outfitting and training.”
Future costs associated with these positions should be more than covered by the savings anticipated from a reduction (through attrition, not layoffs) in the number of officers needed to staff the new County Jail vs. the existing facility, said Sheriff Schiff. Now under construction near Route 17’s Exit 104 in Monticello, the new Jail and relocated Sheriff’s Office may open as early as next year, with the Jail fully operational in 2019.