- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 25, 2015

TROUTDALE, Ore. (AP) - The city Troutdale east of Portland has decided to abolish its police force in favor of a law enforcement contract with the Multnomah County sheriff’s office.

The City Council approved the 10-year deal Tuesday by a 4-3 vote, The Oregonian reports (https://bit.ly/1BMnIPu) reported.

Supporters say it means pay increases for police officers because they’ll become deputies, who get better pay, as well as taxpayer savings in the city of 16,000.

Opponents said the contract was approved too hastily. They sought a public advisory vote.

The city employs 27 officers and support staff. Under the contract, it would pay for 16. Other workers would fill county vacancies.

The city figures its next police budget would be $4.5 million, but it will pay the county $3.7 million instead. After one-time costs in the first year, the city payment would drop to $3.4 million a year.

Police Chief Scott Anderson would become a commander in the sheriff’s department and report such performance measures as response times to the city. Sheriff Dan Staton promised to keep Anderson after a six-month transition.

A Troutdale officer earns $62,852 a year compared with $71,729 for a Multnomah County deputy, city officials said.

Troutdale would join Wood Village and Maywood Park in contracting with the sheriff’s office. In Washington County, Cornelius took the step last year.

The county commission must approve the agreement. Diane McKeel, the commissioner who represents the city and eastern county areas, spoke favorably of it.

“Troutdale is going to get the police coverage that is important for them,” McKeel said, “and it helps us fill vacancies with some very qualified, outstanding officers.”

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Information from: The Oregonian, https://www.oregonlive.com


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