Police will enforce law, despite mayor's wishes
Electric City Mayor Jerry Sands’ attempt to influence how Grand Coulee police pursue noise complaints has fallen on deaf ears, at least for the short term.
He went to the Grand Coulee police department office recently and told officers there to back off responding to noise complaints from local taverns who have live music.
Grand Coulee Police Chief Mel Hunt said he and his officers take an oath to uphold the laws and nothing has changed.
“If Electric City’s legislative body (the council) wants to amend its noise ordinance, then that might be different,” Hunt stated.
Sands told police that he didn’t want them to uphold noise level provisions of the noise ordinance and not to go into establishments to warn them.
Police have responded to noise complaints recently at Electric City Bar and Grill when the volume of outside live music is turned up too high. The firm was issued with a $250 citation on one occasion.
Sands also told police not to go into the tavern to warn the proprietor, but to call them on the phone.
“We will continue to go directly into places that we get complaints about,” Hunt stated. “A presence when there is a complaint is a deterrent in itself.”
Electric City contracts with Grand Coulee for police services. Recently, as a result of negotiations between council committees, the contract between the two cities was extended through Dec. 31, 2015. The amount of that contract will be $115,000. Electric City is paying about $77,000 for this year’s service, the final year in a 5-year agreement.
Mayor Sands has commented on several occasions that Electric City needs its own police department so the city can get them to do what it wants them to do.
His efforts to influence how police enforce the law has struck an unwelcome chord with Grand Coulee police.