EPHRATA – Coulee City is getting its own deputy.
The Grant County commissioners signed an $80,000 contract with the city Monday, March 11. The city's town marshal left for a job with the Soap Lake Police Department last year. Since she left, the Grant County Sheriff's Office handled calls to the city.
The contract allows the sheriff's office to hire an additional deputy, who will primarily focus on Coulee City, Sheriff Tom Jones said. The deputy's about $90,000 salary is mostly covered by the contract.
“The deputy will spend at least 30 hours a week inside the city limits,” he said. “He'll be in the city limits and building the relationships in the community. “
The contract calls for routine patrols of the town, including checking the homes of people on vacation, attending school events, checking the security of businesses. When the deputy is scheduled to be in the city, he will be able to respond immediately.
The sheriff's office will provide additional patrols for up to six major events, including the Coulee City Last Stand Rodeo and the Walleye Fishing Tournament. Along with the other services, they are increasing park patrols during the city's peak season.
The change gives Coulee City, which used to have to wait for a deputy to respond, and it frees up resources for the rest of the county, Jones said.
“I think it's definitely a win-win for Coulee City,” he said. “They get all the things we offer as a sheriff's office.”
Along with giving Coulee City a police officer, the contract also stations a deputy in the northern part of the county, so if a problem arises they can respond, Jones said.
“Right now we're going through the process for hiring a new deputy,” the sheriff's said. “We're hoping to have a deputy in place in the second week of April … In the meantime; we'll keep up with what we're doing currently.”