Chester Chief of Police Donal McKinney cited “bridge escorts, truck traffic and the projects” as reasons for needing another police officer for his department at Monday night’s city council meeting.
“We are down two...truck traffic is getting crazy. We can’t keep going like this,” said McKinney.
McKinney stated his part-timers are going to stop when summer comes.
“Get rid of them then,” said Crossland.
“We can’t do that,” said McKinney. “All of my part time men are young and wanna spend time with their familes.”
McKinney said all the bridge oversized loads escorts are tying up his officers time.
Alderman Mike Blechle stated to give them Perry County’s number so when they need assistance they can call them.
“Realistically asking MO or the Randolph County Sheriff is no realistic,” said McKinney.
Perry County Sheriff Gary Schaff was contacted by the Herald Tribune regarding his department assisting with bridge escorts.
“We would be willing to share the responsibility and do it. We have provided that service in the past,” said Schaff.
Randolph County Sheriff Mike Hoelscher stated his department does not do bridge escorts.
A special meeting of the Fire Department, Police Department and Public Safety Committee was held on Monday, February 13 to discuss the need for a new police officer and whether a vacancy in the police department exists.
During the 2 hour meeting McKinney was asked to justify the need of another officer.
“Our biggest issue is covering the shifts,” said McKinney. “We need to staff our shifts. We have a hard time filling shifts.”
Part-time officers were a big conversation at the meeting. McKinney was asked why the part-time officers hired never work.
“You’re the administrator. You need to sit down with your part-timers and figure out a plan, said Blechle. “ We told Ryan to make it work and he made it work. You have got to make it work. If you wanted the job as administrator then you need to do your administrative job.”
Due to press constraints we were unable to publish the meeting in its entirety. There will be a full story on the meeting in next week’s edition.