Lincoln County Commissioners

Desmond appointed to state fire commission

Sheriff reveals cost to hire new deputy
Posted:  Tuesday, December 19, 2017 - 5:00pm

Ken Desmond, employee of the Lincoln County Emergency Management Agency, was named to the Maine Fire Protection Services Commission, according to County EMA Director Casey Stevens at the Dec. 19 commissioners’ meeting. Desmond was appointed by the governor effective Dec. 20. “His job will be to monitor and evaluate the state’s fire protection service system on a  continuing basis, and to provide recommendations to appropriate state agencies and the Legislature for actions that should be taken to improve it,” Stevens said.

Desmond will be sworn in before Jan. 19.

Stevens also said his agency is continuing planning for the Emergency Operations Center in the basement of the courthouse; and bids are coming in for the work to get it ready. In addition, Lincoln Academy, which had multiple residential students in the county’s warming shelters during the windstorm, contacted EMA to begin the process of becoming a full-service shelter, serving not only its 80 residential students, but all of Central Lincoln County. “We welcome their participation,” Stevens said. “Lincoln Academy is located centrally and will be a good placement. We will begin looking for generators that will help them become a full-service shelter.”

A full-service shelter, as opposed to a warming shelter, offers cots for the night, showers and other services, and hot meals. Stevens said he would contact the Red Cross to see if it would approve the shelter once all the pieces are in place. Lincoln Academy is applying for grants for generator hookups, and the county will help identify surplus generators to power the cafeteria and the gymnasium.

At Commissioner Hamilton Meserve’s request, Sheriff Todd Brackett provided a list of materials and trainings, as well as their costs, needed to hire a new deputy. The total cost to outfit a new deputy, including a vehicle, is $48,405; however, many of the items a replacement deputy needs are often available. “This year, a replacement employee would cost $6,400 to outfit, because he or she won’t need a vehicle or a radio or a lightbar,” he said. “But there is still a considerable cost, for uniforms, ballistic vests, TASERS, and more.” Meserve had asked for the information after Brackett requested an additional deputy for traffic control. The new deputy will already have a car and most of the other materials he or she needs in this budget year, Brackett said.

Brackett announced he had accepted the resignation of Deputy John Braley, who resigned to accept a position in Boothbay Harbor.

Two Bridges Regional Jail will be pursuing a federal grant program to work with inmates suffering from addiction while in jail, and after release. “We have a good chance, because we accept inmates from many places in the state, and that means we will work with inmates who are released into multiple counties,” Brackett said. More than half the people in Maine live in a county that has inmates in TBRJ. However, he pointed out that the grant program is highly competitive. Only 16 awards nationwide, which could total as much as $425,000 per year for five years, will be given during this grant cycle. He said the jail is partnering with Lincoln and Sagadahoc counties and Mid Coast Hospital, and is  looking for a grant writer to work with them to craft a competitive grant request.