By Shereen Siewert
The Marathon County Board of Supervisors this week will vote on a request from the Sheriff’s Department to contract a full-time deputy for the town of Rib Mountain.
Sheriff’s officials say Rib Mountain represents the largest number of calls of any town throughout the year, as the heart of the county’s shopping district and the gateway to several recreational destinations in the metro area.
In an official request to county leaders, Chief Deputy Chad Billeb said the town approached the Sheriff’s Department with a request to contract a full-time deputy after years of discussion about the need for greater policing in the area. Initial plans called for the position to start in January, but due to remaining funds in Rib Mountain’s budget the start date was moved up to September.
During times the assigned deputy is off duty, other deputies assigned to the area will take calls for service.
Billeb, in his request, said having a dedicated deputy for Rib Mountain will free up deputies to provide better service to other areas. The deputy is expected to develop unique, consistent knowledge about current trends or incidents in Rib Mountain as well as develop stronger relationships with residents and businesses.
“We believe this position will provide a higher level of service to Rib Mountain and free up resources to better serve other areas of the county,” Billeb’s request states.
Rib Mountain will provide funding for one full-time deputy along with a vehicle and some required equipment. The Sheriff’s Department will provide some equipment they wish to retain control over, such as firearms, ballistic vests, computers and cell phones. Those items, however, are already on hand.
The town committed to funding the position for five years with a high likelihood of renewal, according to county documents.
The Sheriff’s Department has already assigned the deputy to Rib Mountain. In August, the department announced that Deputy Cassandra Seubert will cover that area, according to a WAOW report.
Due to the size and makeup of the town, Rib Mountain isn’t required by state statute to create their own police department and have so far been relying on the Marathon County Sheriff’s Department for such services. They are allowed to contract with a specific police entity to provide services, which the Sheriff’s Department will now offer on a larger scale.
The full board takes up the issue at a meeting set for 7 p.m. on Thursday. Anyone wishing to attend the meeting by phone can call 408-418-9388 using access code 962 376 748.
The meeting will also be broadcast on Public Access or at https://tinyurl.com/MarathonCountyBoard.