MIDVALE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News) – Midvale City Council voted not to issue a letter of intent to leave Unified Police Department Tuesday night.
Council decided to wait on more information from UPD and the city’s feasibility study.
MIDVALE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News) – Midvale City Council will hold a special council meeting to vote on its future with the Unified Police Department Tuesday.
City officials completed a feasibility study to see if they could reactivate its police department and found some favorable results.
“I think we have numbers now that are pretty refined. We have a pretty good idea of what our true cost would be if we chose to start our own police department,” said City Manager Kane Loader.
The city believes the Unified Police Department has changed too much since the city disbanded its police department and joined UPD.
“It is not the same organization that we joined when we joined in 2011. When they added all of the townships, it really diluted the influence that Midvale had on the board at the time,” said Loader. “There has been some pretty significant changes over the last several years, and I think that is a real worry for city council of being able to control the costs.”
The city estimates the cost of the department will range between $8.1 and $8.9 million, and it’s roughly the same amount of money it spends on UPD services.
City leaders would look to hire 52-56 officers and 12 civilians.
This would include the police chief and administration.
The city would also purchase vehicles and build a 3,500 square foot evidence and forensic building.
When asked about the current police officers at the UPD Midvale Precinct, Loader said he considers them all well-trained officers who represent the city well.
Loader added, “I would consider changing the patches on their sleeves and on we go to a new Midvale City Police Department.”
The reason for the special council meeting is because the city needs to issue its year notice with an intent to leave on July 1, 2020.
“The letter gives the board our intention to leave, and the date we are showing on the letter is July 1, of 2021,” said Loader. “If there are changes that acceptable to our city council, and our city council feels like the organization is more in where they are thinking, and where they want to go with their police department, then they could stay.”
After the special council meeting, the city will hold public hearings on the Midvale City Police Department.
“We’ve run a police department for 100 years, we can do it again. We had a good police department when we joined, we can have a great police department when we create one,” Loader said.
ABC4 News contacted Sheriff Rosie Riveria and her staff about the potential move by Midvale City. We were told the sheriff and her team is reviewing all of the information presented.