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Law enforcement contract will likely split

Three agencies may be involved in covering dam


Last updated 11/27/2013 at 3:02pm

An eventual contract for law enforcement services between the Bureau of Reclamation and local agenices will probably end up looking like this -- Grand Coulee, four officers; Coulee Dam, two officers; and two officers from the Colville Tribal Police department.

While discussions are still going on, and no date has been set for a final decision, The Star has learned that the bureau has realigned its five zones of coverage to just two.

Grand Coulee would cover zone 1, which goes from the switchyards to the Washington Flats on the west side of the river.

Coulee Dam and the Colville Tribes, with two officers each, would cover zone 2, which is the east side of the river, a much smaller area.

Grand Coulee Police Chief Mel Hunt advised the city council last Tuesday night of how he thought the final arrangement would end up.

The decision on the officer alignment is being made at the bureau’s Boise office.

Prior to the new contract arrangements, Grand Coulee and Coulee Dam each had four officers in the law enforcement coverage pool.

When the new negotiations began, Grand Coulee was to cover the entire Grand Coulee Dam Project with four officers for about $500,000 a year for three years; Coulee Dam’s contract wasn’t renewed.

Efforts by Coulee Dam town officials to get negotiations going again apparently proved successful.

Formal disclosure of the contract for zone 2 hasn’t been announced.

Grand Coulee’s council voted last Tuesday night to have Mayor Pro Tem Paul Townsend sign the agreement. Mayor Chris Christopherson is employed by the bureau and has distanced himself from being directly involved in the agreement.


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