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Schools delay decision on SRO contract

Sequim Gazette staff

A contract between the City of Sequim and the Sequim School District for a School Resource Officer is getting a closer look from school legal advisors before school board directors accept it.

 

Sequim city councilors gave their approval on Oct. 14 to accept a four-year grant for $125,000 from the U.S. Department of Justice’s Community Oriented Policing Services, COPS, hiring program.

 

A week later, school board members agreed with a recommendation from Sequim schools superintendent Kelly Shea to delay approving the contract, to have a district lawyer review the contract.

The contract would put an officer on the Sequim schools’ main campus and cost the district a little more than $9,000 for the first and second years. In the third and fourth years, the city and schools would bear more of the costs.

 

An officer’s salary and benefits cost about $85,877.

 

The school board has the item on its Nov. 4 meeting agenda.

 

Sequim schools last had a school officer in 2009 and both the city and schools decided to stop funding the position due to cutbacks.

 

Finding an officer could some take time, Sequim Police Chief Bill Dickinson said.

 

The department is three officers down with one officer at the academy, another tentatively slated for academy in March and background checks being performed for the third vacancy.

 

As soon as the Sequim School District commits, Dickinson said he’ll send in the paperwork and likely see the first grant by the first of the year.

 

From there they’ll begin recruiting from the academy or an officer in the field already.
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