ROSEBURG, Ore. -- With announcement of cuts in Lane County law enforcement, many people are wondering: What is going to happen here in Douglas County?
Lane County Sheriff Tom Turner said this week that he is cutting back patrol coverage to 20 hours a day to save money. One of the effects: officers won't be responding to most property crimes.
Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin says this county has been lucky that our Sheriff's Department hasn't had to take such drastic cuts, at least so far.
Hanlin says at this point, DCSO still tries to respond to all calls. "Obviously, if we're faced with more budget cuts next year and we see a reduction in our patrol staff, then we will have to take a look at the calls that we're responding to, and probably only respond to the more serious calls in progress," said Hanlin.
He told KPIC News that one of the biggest reasons they are still able to handle the calls is the other agencies in our area. "We're very fortunate here in Douglas County, that all the police agencies work very well together," he said. "We have a very unique relationship with the Oregon State Police and all the police departments here, that benefits the citizens here in Douglas County."
He says without that cooperation, the situation could be very different.
Hanlin says the future funding is uncertain at best, and he's hoping the re-authorization of the safety net will ease some of that pressure.
With the debt ceiling discussions going on now in congress, that is far from a certainty.