Lyon County Sheriff Brad Pope’s first requests after being sworn in during the Jan. 3 Board of Commissioners meeting received immediate approval before he left to welcome new deputies to his department.
Pope asked the commissioners to approve the elimination of one vacant lieutenant position, to allow for the creation of one deputy position and use the savings to keep a grant-funded deputy after the Regional Gang Unit funding ended Dec. 31.
“We initially wanted to limit two lieutenant positions and replace them with as many deputy positions as we can,” Pope said. “But with the restructuring of the sheriff’s office and moving the command staff throughout the county, the position of lieutenant and captain have been combined, so having those extra lieutenant positions is not necessary.”
Pope said the department was able to keep three lieutenants that will fill spots that used to serve under captain’s positions.
“The gang grant was not to be done and so we were going to lose that deputy position, and so by replacing it with one deputy, we’re gaining two deputies for one lieutenant,” Pope said. “It’s a pretty fair tradeoff.”
Commissioner Robert Jacobson, representing District 4, said it was important to support Lyon’s new sheriff, and made the motion to eliminate the vacant lieutenant’s spot to open the deputy position and keep the grant-funded deputy.
The board approved the decision 4-0.
The board also approved Pope’s request to consult with Joiner and Associates, LLC of Reno in the development and administration of promotional processes for lieutenant or sergeant candidates in an amount not to exceed $24,500.
Pope said the item originally wasn’t budgeted for his office, but state law now requires local law enforcement agencies to have third-party testing complete assessments for candidates. Pope said neighboring counties or agencies, including Douglas, Washoe and Sparks, have referred to Joiner and Associates’ services for its free scenario-based tests for its lieutenants and sergeants.
“They have given us a little more discretion selecting the lieutenants,” he said.
The contract also states Joiner, in addition to the job analysis, would be responsible for providing a human resources staff member to serve as a primary contact for consultants and assist with on-site activities, providing six qualified individuals from outside agencies such as Churchill, Douglas or Fallon and so forth to be trained as assessors to evaluate candidates, providing or reimbursing necessary travel, food or lodging expenses for the assessors and providing the facilities for examination administration.
Commissioner Wes Henderson asked if Pope planned to spend less in other parts of his budget to help cover the $24,500, and he said he was aware there are extra funds available in the LCSO’s training budget he intended to set aside to cover this portion.
“I get leery when you say ‘plans on’ without concrete information,” Henderson said. “But I agree with the step with the independent third-party testing, and I think it’s a good move.”
The board approved the contract with Joiner, 4-0.
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