Nevada State Police says 24/7 coverage for Washoe County will end
RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - 6:00 P.M. UPDATE: A spokesperson for Nevada Governor Joe Lombardo issued a statement saying:
“As a law enforcement officer for more than 30 years, Governor Lombardo understands public safety and has been aggressively engaged since taking office. As he made clear in his State of the State address, Governor Lombardo proposed two-grade pay increases and significant cost of living increases for all public safety employees who were blatantly ignored over the past four years by Democrat legislators. Rather than political theater that accomplishes nothing for our brave law enforcement officers, Democrats should quickly approve the Governor’s budget.” -Elizabeth Ray, Spokesperson for Governor Joe Lombardo
4:30 P.M. UPDATE: Nevada State Police released a statement on the move to end 24/7 coverage in Washoe County.
“As with many law enforcement agencies across the nation, the Nevada State Police also faces staffing, recruitment, and retention challenges. The Nevada State Police Highway Patrol Division prioritizes traffic enforcement activities across the state to maximize the safety of motorists.
The scheduling adjustment in Reno will provide a greater level of service to the public and allied agencies during hours of highest demand. We will ensure that our service to the public and support to allied agencies continues without gaps by utilizing overtime, on-call, and callout options, as necessary. The Department will continue to monitor and adjust schedules to provide the highest level of public safety services.”
3:30 P.M. UPDATE.: Nevada Senate Democratic leader Nicole Cannizzaro issued a statement saying:
“I introduced Senate Bill 440, which would immediately raise the pay for all state workers, issue back pay owed to our state police, and allow us to more quickly begin addressing this vacancy crisis in public safety. Unfortunately, this bill has met political resistance from the administration and its allies at every step including Senate Republicans’ unanimous opposition to the bill on the Senate floor. We should stop playing games with Nevadans’ safety and work to resolve the staffing crisis in our state police.”
KOLO 8 News Now reached out to Sparks Police, Reno Police, and the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office to see how this change will affect their early morning efforts. Reno Police say they are meeting with Nevada Highway Patrol on Thursday to address the issue. The Washoe County Sheriff’s Office says they have no comment.
ORIGINAL STORY: The Nevada State Police say 24/7 assigned coverage in the Washoe County, Reno and Sparks areas will end.
They say this has been caused by critically low staffing levels in the Nevada Highway Patrol.
There will now be no assigned coverage between 2:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m. in those areas.
A statement from the Nevada Police Union said:
“We [Nevada Police Union] have continuously sounded the alarm on pay inequity that directly caused record-high turnover and vacancy rates of state police, which leaves Nevadans less safe,” said Dan Gordon, president of Nevada Police Union. “As a union, we are doing everything we can to draw attention to this issue, but it ultimately comes down to the State’s leadership to make public safety a critical priority and take expedited actions to adequately fund State Police. The previous administration ignored our many calls for intervention to mitigate our declining staffing levels, which left Nevada in this consequential position. We are working directly with Governor Lombardo and the Legislature to find ways to alleviate this issue.”
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