Posted: Oct 11, 2012 6:51 PM by Caroline Flores - email@example.com
Updated: Oct 11, 2012 11:08 PM
CORPUS CHRISTI - County officials say they have been providing law enforcement services to Fulton for years now. But as of two to three years ago county officials realized the town wasn't paying near enough. So every year since then, officials have bumped up the price about $15,000 a year.
But this year, Aransas County Judge Burt Mills decided not to up the price.
So I asked him why not and he said, "I was informed that it probably wouldn't pass in Fulton and uh so I presented it to our council... Or our commissioners that we stay the same this year and negotiate." But he said commissioners didn't want to do that.
Right now Fulton is paying $45,000 a year for law enforcement services. Sheriff Bill Mills says that is nowhere near the price they need to be paying. He says the price that should be paid is between $175,000 to $200,000 a year.
"Like I said, that's 65 thousand. That barley puts an officer out there," said Sheriff Mills. He says most officers with the sheriff's department cost between $55,000 to $60,000, and that doesn't include all the equipment needed.
Because of this, Judge Mills sent a letter to the Fulton Mayor today saying they were going to increase the price to $65,000.
"This is not Utopia every day. We're spending tax payers dollars. And spending tax payers dollars we got to do it wisely," said Mayor Jimmy Kendrick about the increase.
Kendrick says while the city's budget is tight, it will be up to the council to decide what to do.
"I believe anything, anything less than $150,000 or $200,000 is still a bargain for the city of Fulton when you consider the cost of trying to get em the deal," said Sheriff Mills.
County officials say they don't expect Fulton to pay the hundreds of thousands of dollars they should. But they do want to keep increasing the price every year to get it as close as possible.
The new proposed price change will go to the Fulton City Council next Tuesday. At that time they will decide if they will pay the price or go into negotiations.
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