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DSA In the News

County tackles police contract with San Carlos

Published on 9/13/2010

San Mateo County leaders on Tuesday are set to add 28 sheriff’s deputies to its employment rolls — more than two dozen positions required for the Sheriff’s Office to absorb the entire 39-member San Carlos Police Department.

While the Board of Supervisors must still approve the contract with the city of San Carlos, Sheriff Greg Munks is asking it to move ahead with adopting its salary amendment so that a second reading can happen prior to the anticipated Oct. 31 effective date. Two agreements detailing services and transfer of personnel, equipment and facilities will come before the board at a later date.

The Sheriff’s Office agreed to hire all existing full-time San Carlos Police Department employees as part of its arrangement with the city. Munks expects to fill 11 current vacancies in his department with San Carlos employees and needs 28 added for the new slots. The additions include one sheriff’s captain, five sergeants, 14 deputy sheriffs, two full-time community service officers, four part-time community service officer, one administrative secretary and one office assistant.

The $6.2 million cost of the salaries and benefits will be borne by the city of San Carlos, freeing the county from any net county cost and saving the city approximately $2 million a year.

On Sept. 2, the San Carlos City Council unanimously signed off on the five-year contract with the Sheriff’s Office. The arrangement protects the jobs for at least one year and offers most raises and the possibility of mobility. Police Chief Greg Rothaus will likely remain as a captain and bureau chief and programs like DARE and traffic enhancement will be resurrected or enhanced.

The financially-challenged city began considering outsourcing police, fire, parks maintenance and payroll late last year after voters defeated a half-cent sales tax measure. The alternative was across-the-board cuts that outsourcing proponents said would leave public safety hobbled and still not completely fix a $3.5 million budget deficit.

The Board of Supervisors meets 9 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 14 in Board Chambers, 400 County Government Center, Redwood City.