The number of calls coming into Sheriff’s offices across the Lake Area remain as high as they are during the summertime, which is putting a strain on the departments and their staff.
In Benton County, Sheriff Eric Knox says after months of searching…they were able to get 4 new Deputies to help lighten the load.
He says three of those deputies are seasoned law enforcement professionals, so a transition into the department should be fairly quick.
Right now, those Deputies are in field training but Knox says they should be ready to get on the street in a few weeks.
Pay is also a big reason that many of the area Sheriff’s offices are short staffed, as many departments don’t have the funds for additional staff or their pay scale is less than other districts nearby.
Camden County recently raised their pay thanks to a tax increase and Sheriff Knox says he too was also able to raise pay for his jail staff, taking them to $16 dollars an hour.
***From the Sheriff:
Hello Benton County,
The Summer is giving way to Fall but we are still seeing a call volume that is normally associated with our Summer crowds, to say the least, we are busy. I am pleased to announce the addition of four deputies to the Sheriff’s Office staff, three being seasoned, experienced law enforcement officers. These deputies will add to the professionalism we are building here in the county and I am proud to add them to the force. All are going through the field training portion of our hiring process and will be out on the road serving our county in a few weeks. I have had two deputies on the injury list, one is back and Deputy Botteron has had surgery and looking at another three months of recovery before she can return, please keep her in your prayers.
The jail staff received a pay raise, bringing the starting wage up to $16.00 per hour. This increase has allowed us ample candidates to choose from to fill our ranks and get the federal contract money flowing in from the jail revenue. The hiring and training process will slow us up for a bit, but then we will be on our way to the million five in federal funds we are capable of earning. I will continue to do everything in my power to improve your Sheriff’s Office and Detention Center.
I want to thank you, the tax payers and the Friends of the Benton County Sheriff’s Office, for stepping up and voicing your concerns to the Benton County Commissioners. The support you have shown this office and the staff that is working so hard to serve you is appreciated by all. Those that have heard me speak will tell you that I say, and I know, this office and all the others belong to you! I’m grateful you have placed your trust in me to work for you.
October 11th marked the one-year anniversary of the motorcycle crash my wife Joy and I were involved in on the mile-long bridge near Warsaw. I want to thank the thousands of people who have supported my wife and I, through some really tough times. Joy is back to work, and has been for some time, but she still struggles with some of the injuries she sustained. She is a fighter (hard headed too!) and her attitude is always “can do”, but unfortunately she has had to make some adjustments in her life to accommodate for her injuries. This isn’t a complaint, just a fact, as we believe in positive thinking. As bad as it was, it could have been much worse. Those close to us will hear Joy say “God just wasn’t done with us yet!”.
We thank you for the thousands of prayers and good wishes as well as the donations. We are believers in the power of prayer and know we are alive today because of Him.