News Alert!!: Needles, CA: Needles City Council to discuss and appoint members for a task force to investigate the restoring of a school resource officer.
Members of the Needles City Council are planning to discuss and appoint at least 2 members for a task force to investigate the restoring of a school resource officer during a Needles City Council and Needles Public Utility Authority Meeting on Tuesday, February 27th, 2018 inside the Needles City Council Chambers in Needles, California.
The restoring of a School Resource Officer (S.R.O.) was requested to be place on the agenda by Needles Vice Mayor Jeff Williams and was in wake of the deadly shooting at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida on Wednesday, February 14th, 2018 that killed 17 people and injured 14 people.
As reported on ZachNews 2 weeks ago, Needles Vice Mayor Jeff Williams is working with the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, the Needles Unified School District, and San Bernardino County Supervisor to “restore our school resource officer position.”
Currently, there is no school resource officer serving for the schools in the Needles Unified School District, and Needles City Manager Rick Daniels told ZachNews that the school district did not have enough money to pay for school resource officer.
According to the City of Needles, until 2011, a sworn deputy was assigned to the school district campuses to assist with on site and youth oriented law enforcement issues, such as violence incidents, truancy, drug prevention programs, etc.
The School Resource Officer (S.R.O.) was jointly funded by the Needles Unified School District (N.U.S.D.), San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, San Bernardino County Supervisor, and the City of Needles.
The program was discontinued due to lack of funding availability by one or more of the funding partners.
The Needles Unified School District (N.U.S.D.) requested the reestablishment of an School Resource Officer (S.R.O.) during the 2016-2017 San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department’s Contract negotiations.
At that time, it was estimated a School Resource Officer (S.R.O.) would cost $165,000.
The approved the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department’s Contract however requested an option for providing a School Resource Officer (S.R.O.) upon execution of a funding agreement between the City of Needles and the Needles Unified School District (N.U.S.D.).
Captain Tarangle informed staff that a School Resource Officer (S.R.O.) would free up city patrol deputies to focus on patrolling the city.
During school hours there is typically one deputy on duty and calls for service at the school draw resources away from other patrol needs.
A Council Task Force could convene a meeting of the former funding parties to investigate the School Resource Officer (S.R.O.) Program value and funding strategies to re-establish the program.
The City of Needles said that the fiscal impact is minimal staff time.
The recommendation in front of members of the Needles City Council is for the City of Needles Mayor appoint 2 a person council task force to organize a convening of the Needles Unified School District (N.U.S.D.), San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, and the San Bernardino County Supervisor’s Office to investigate reestablishing a School Resource Officer (S.R.O.) for the school campuses in Needles, California and discuss other off campus youth law enforcement issues; authorize the City Manager to provide adequate staff support; and report back to the Needles City Council in 60 days.
**** More Information: Agenda Item #10: Re-establishing School Resource Officer (S.R.O.): ****
According to the United States Department of Justice, a school resource officer is define as a sworn law enforcement officers responsible for safety and crime prevention in schools.
School resource officers are typically employed by a local law enforcement agencies and work closely with administrators in an effort to create a safer environment for both students and staff.
The responsibilities of school resource officers are similar to regular police department officers and sheriff’s deputies in that they have the ability to make arrests, respond to calls for service, and document incidents that occur within their jurisdiction.
School resource officers typically have additional duties that include mentoring and conducting presentations on youth-related issues.
Needles City Manager Rick Daniels tells ZachNews that he hopes that the school resource officer to our school is restored especially in wake to the tragic shooting in Florida.
The City of Needles lowered their flags to half-mast following the deadly shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in memories of the victims.
The public is welcome to attend the Needles City Council and Needles Public Utility Authority Meeting starting at 6:00pm PT inside the Needles City Council Chambers off the J Street, next to the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department’s Colorado River Station sign and flag pole, at the Needles Civic Center at 1111 Bailey Avenue in Needles, California.
Parking is located around the Needles Civic Center just off of J Street near the Needles Recreation Center or just off of Bailey Avenue near the San Bernardino County Needles Branch Library building.
The Needles City Council and Needles Public Utility Authority Meeting will be broadcast live at ZachNews on Facebook starting at 6:00pm PT.
For more information regarding the Needles City Council Meetings, please contact Dale Jones in the City Clerk’s Office at the City of Needles at: 1 (760) 326-2113 Ext. 345.
Stay tuned to ZachNews for more news updates with more information regarding this news story.
** Pictures from ZachNews: **