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Sheriff wants more money for casino enforcement

6 May 2008

CALIFORNIA -- As reported by the Sacramento Bee: "El Dorado County is to receive $500,000 annually for 20 years for law enforcement under a pact with the Shingle Springs Band of Miwok Indians. But the county sheriff said that won't cover the staffing and equipment that he expects will be needed to handle the anticipated increase in calls for service that will come with the opening of Red Hawk Casino.

"That word from Sheriff Jeff Neves took the Board of Supervisors by surprise last week as it considered transferring the first $250,000 payment from the tribe to the Sheriff's Department and authorizing the department to add six deputy positions and a sergeant's position for casino-related coverage.

"...The tribe agreed to pay $250,000 of the first year's payments six months before the casino's anticipated opening to give the Sheriff's Department time to purchase equipment and hire officers.

"But board members said the county could face a funding gap if deputies began work before the casino opened, because the remaining $250,000 won't be paid until the third and fourth quarter of the casino's first year of operation.

"...The sheriff said the situation is complicated because he is already short of deputies, with five vacancies, 11 deputies in training at the academy and eight on leave.

"...Neves said he wasn't consulted during the county's negotiations with the tribe..."

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