RIVERTON (ABC4 News) – The clock is ticking for the new Riverton Police Department to fill all 35 of its positions before July 1- the date when the City of Riverton will officially split from the Unified Police Department.
Back in May 2018, Herriman city council voted unanimously to split from UPD citing costs as one of the main reasons. Two months later, the Riverton City Council made the same decision after Mayor Trent Staggs said there was a discrepancy in their agreement with UPD.
While Herriman only had 120 days to make the transition by September 30 last year, the split allowed Herriman City to increase their police department from 22 to 35 police officers for the same cost. Six months later, Chief Troy Carr said they’ve stayed fully-staffed and even had to turn away highly-qualified applicants.
“It’s been a fantastic journey,” said Chief Carr. “Although we’ve experienced some tragedy in the city, we’ve also experienced success. One of those is a deeper connection to our community.”
Since becoming an independent police department, Chief Carr said they’ve been able to increase visibility in the community and improve response times.
“We’re on doorsteps quickly. We’re doing some proactive things we weren’t able to do under the other model. I think dollar for dollar, it was clearly the wise choice,” said Chief Carr. “Instead of having 1 or 2 officers on in the city at night, we’re able to increase that staffing to such that we can put an officer in each district.”
Riverton City officials hope for the same result as they’re working to fill six sergeant positions and 26 officer positions. Their transition will also allow for more visibility in the community. Chief Don Hutson said their focus will be on patrol.
“Not only faster response times, but I’m hoping to have a more proactive approach to policing and having geographical areas throughout the city where officers will be responsible for anything that happens in that particular area,” said Chief Hutson. “The community will see additional resources in the city in the form of marked police cars and uniformed officers.”
Both Chief Carr and Chief Hutson said despite the split, their cities have maintained a good relationship with the Unified Police Department – allowing for a supportive and smooth transition.
“I do have to give credit to UPD. They have made this transition rather seamless and I appreciate their support,” said Chief Hutson.
Residents can expect the Old Dome Meeting Hall and the color blue to be incorporated in the new Riverton Police Department’s logo and branding.
If you would like to apply for a position at the Riverton Police Department, click here.