Sheriff’s Office to try hybrid vehicle
The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office has decided to buy a hybrid SUV for its fleet, in accordance with the wishes of the budget committee.
Sheriff Todd Brackett said that over the last few years, the committee has asked him to consider hybrids or electric vehicles to save money on fuel. While the SUV will initially cost $3,565 more than the gas-powered version, Brackett expects to make up the difference and then some in fuel costs. The department will make sure the vehicle is otherwise suitable before buying more. The 2020 Ford Pursuit is being bought from Quirk Ford for $36,836.
The other two cars will be a 2019 Dodge Charger from Newcastle Chrysler for $23,939, and a 2019 Ford Pursuit SUV from Quirk Ford for $29,984.
The Sheriff’s Office also bought ammunition for $9,705.84 from TJ Morris Eagle Point. And the County Records System annual license was renewed for $29,000. Det. Scott Hayden will attend a March 20 FBI training session on collection and seizure of mobile devices in Fredericksburg, Virginia. The federal government is reimbursing all the costs of the trip except Hayden’s salary, which the Sheriff’s Office will cover. Hayden will later train local police and sheriff’s deputies in the collection and seizure process.
Boothbay Harbor has signed a new animal control contract with the Sheriff’s Office, and Nobleboro has renewed its contract. Brackett has been in touch with Boothbay, which is also interested, but he has had no word yet from Edgecomb or Southport. All four towns lost their ACO this year.
Brackett said a new Addiction Resource Center counselor has been hired, and is expected to begin work shortly.
Brackett has been working in Augusta on issues related to upcoming jail legislation this month. One bill, LD 973, has been “warmly received” by Sheriffs Departments and County Commissioners alike, providing more funding from the state to county jails, and also funding and support from the Department of Health and Human Services for mental health and substance use support.
Brackett said while New England state spending on county jails is negligible, in some states, the state pays up to 60 percent.
The Project Lifesaver policy was approved, based on other counties’ policies. Emergency Management Director Casey Stevens said the digital radio purchase for law enforcement is now complete with funding from Homeland Security, for $44,576.52. The new set of radios is for the Sheriff’s Office; municipal town departments received their radios last year.
County Administrator Carrie Kipfer is hopeful that commissioners will appear at Maine Counties Day in Augusta on April 11 from 1 to 4 p.m. She announced that the Department of Transportation is taking segments along Route 27 to construct a public sidewalk from the roundabout to the YMCA, and for guardrails. Commissioners approved the Employee Assistance Program cost of $1,064, and the purchase order on a Microsoft server upgrade for $3,678.79, and were informed about a one tenth of one percent increase in the rate of MainePERS for law enforcement employees. A probationary dispatcher, Jill Reynolds, announced her resignation just before she completed her probation period, Kipfer said.