Swift County to provide police administration for Appleton

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With the retirement of Appleton’s Police Chief Doug Moe Jan. 12, the city is now looking at the future of its local department.

For the short term, it is contracting with the Swift County Sheriff’s Office to provide administrative services. It will then be deciding what it wants to do for the long-term – contract for the county to provide services or continue to operate its own police department.

Prior to Moe retiring, the city had asked for a meeting with Sheriff John Holtz to discuss the options.

The priority at the end of the meeting was to come up with a short-term contract that extends through April 1, Holtz told the Swift County Board of Commissioners at their Jan. 16 meeting. The contract is for an interim chief’s position, which puts the sheriff’s office in

charge of all administrative issues at the city’s police department, Holtz said.
Under the agreement, the sheriff’s office will charge $46.64 an hour for the hours its services are needed. If additional services are required, a sheriff’s deputy will assist with the hourly rate at $75 per hour.

“I am glad we have an end date on this,” Commissioner Gary Hendrickx, District 1-Appleton, said. The end date forces the city or the county to come to a resolution on which direction they will go in the future for law enforcement, he said.

The same agreement was approved by the Appleton City Council at a meeting last week and approved.

Commissioner Ed Pederson, District 2-south Benson, asked how much of a time commitment it would be for the sheriff’s office.

“It is an unknown right now,” Holtz said. “It is not going to be a lot of time, but it isn’t going to be a couple hours, either.”

Holtz will oversee the work done under the contract, but someone he designates from his staff will carry out the day-to-day duties. He will also be the one reporting back to the city, he added.

Hendrickx moved adoption of the short-term contract with a second by Commissioner Joe Fox, District 4-Hegbert Township. Hendrickx, Pederson, and Fox, along with Commissioners Pete Peterson, District 3-south Benson, and Eric Rudningen, District 5-Kerkhoven, voted in favor of the motion....

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