The mayors of Challis, Stanley and Mackay said they are putting the final touches on law enforcement contracts to replace contracts that expired Sept. 30.
Custer County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Justin Mitchell said deputies still enforce county and state laws in the cities, but without contracts, deputies can use discretion about enforcing city ordinances. The cities and county have agreed on contract amounts of $58,625 from Challis, $56,000 from Stanley and $40,000 from Mackay.
Mackay Mayor Wayne Olsen said city officials can enforce municipal ordinances. That has occurred since the law enforcement contract with the county expired, Olsen said. Mackay Public Works Supervisor Chardon Hartley resolved an issue with an illegally parked RV in the city.
Since the majority of city ordinances deal with building codes, parking violations and paying bills, Mayor Steve Botti of Stanley said most issues can be resolved with a letter to the offender.
When it comes to traffic laws, “people still can’t go as fast as they want through town,” Botti said.
The cities and the county are still negotiating language in the contracts, Botti said.
Challis Mayor Mike Barrett and Olsen said they want more detailed language on extra law enforcement services at public events. Because some large public gatherings like the Braun Brothers Reunion happen every year, Barrett said the Sheriff’s Office should have cost estimates for providing extra services at such events.
The mayors written proof the sheriff will provide cost estimates to the cities before the public events, Olsen said, so they can pass them on to event organizers. According to the mayors, the people holding public events will be responsible for paying the Sheriff’s Office if extra services are deemed necessary.
Once this and language on how Lumpkin and his deputies will enforce municipal misdemeanors has been cleaned up, the three mayors said they are ready to sign contracts. The mayors met with Lumpkin and county commissioners Oct. 12 to possibly finalize the contracts. That meeting occurred after the Messenger’s deadline.