Commissioners help fund new tasers for sheriff’s office

| December 9, 2015

COSHOCTON – The Coshocton County Commissioners met with members of the sheriff’s department at their Wednesday, Dec. 9 meeting to discuss funding the purchase of tasers. The department currently uses tasers manufactured in 2003 and those are becoming outdated and cannot be repaired.

Currently, there are eight tasers still in use at the sheriff’s department. They are requesting funds to purchase 34 tasers to replace the ones already in use and to outfit all officers with a taser. So far, the department has received a $12,500 donation from the Skelton family and $2,500 in community donations. One taser costs $1,023.88.

Tasers are an essential piece of equipment for law enforcement officers and have reduced injury to an officer by 90 percent and injury to a suspect by 60 percent. During the meeting, the officers present gave multiple accounts where using a taser has eliminated the need to take a life or injury with a pistol. Officers also said that many times, they only need to display a taser for the suspect to surrender.

The commissioners agreed to fund $19,811.92 for the purchase of tasers. An additional $10,597 is needed.

The officers also discussed Keefe Commissary Agreement added features including a prepaid debit card release system for inmates with the amount of money given to them on the card at time of release instead of mailing a check, an inmate phone ordering system where the inmate will use the phone in his or her cell to order commissary at any time, which frees up time for the corrections staff, and an internet and phone deposit for inmate commissary accounts where a family member or friend can deposit money into the inmate’s account without having to come in to the sheriff’s department.

The commissioners also met with Mayor Steve Mercer and Jerry Stenner to discuss the 2016 CDBG grant. The county can apply for two competitive grants in 2016 in either the critical infrastructure or neighborhood revitalization grant. Applications would need to be received by June with the grants awarded in September or October.

The mayor and service director discussed possible projects to use CDBG grant money for, if they wish to apply and their application is accepted next summer. One project discussed was running water lines into the valley off of Sixth Street. Currently, there is some contamination occurring with the water lines and sewer in that area and residents may not be able to use their well system in the future. Extending the city water line would help 72 residences.

Another project discussed was the downtown lighting issue. The lighting downtown is approximately 30 years old and needs replaced and updated. During the recent sidewalk project, the city worked with Hilscher-Clarke to replace conduit and they also recently replaced 12 electrical boxes. Stenner also announced that the circuit breaker box has also had to be repaired due to age.

The city is also interested in switching to LED lights to save energy and money.

No decisions on projects have been named yet, but these two projects are what the city deems is the most necessary in which to use CDBG funds.

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About the Author ()

I have been employed at the Coshocton County Beacon since September 2009 as a news reporter and assistant graphic artist. I am a 2004 graduate of Newcomerstown High School and a 2008 graduate of Capital University with a bachelor’s degree in Professional Writing. I am married to John Scott and live in Newcomerstown. We have two beautiful daughters, Amelia Grace Scott and Leanna Rose Scott.

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