Police presence could increase in CW

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By Linda Dillman
Staff Writer

More police protection in Canal Winchester?

Yes, once Canal Winchester City Council holds two more readings on legislation contracting for the services of an additional deputy with the Fairfield County Sheriff’s Department.

Under the current contract, Fairfield County provides 11 deputies serving a total of 376 hours per week. A pair of deputies patrol the city 24 hours a day, seven days a week with a third deputy working a shift mutually agreed upon by the mayor and sheriff.

If approved, the agreement adds another deputy—under the same mutually-agreed upon language—to exclusively patrol Canal Winchester, bringing the total to 12 funded deputies.

Subject to an annual appropriation by council, the sheriff further agrees to a second additional deputy beginning on Jan. 1, 2021, which would bring the total of funded deputies exclusively contracted to the city to 13.

“I would personally feel more comfortable if we had one more officer,” said Councilman Mike Coolman. “We do have a plan. We’re putting it into action, and this is the first step.

The salary for each additional officer is $88,000 and the sheriff’s department provides all training programs, special equipment and other regular sheriff’s office facilities.

“This is a good start,” said Councilman Pat Lynch.

While stating his support for the agreement, fellow Councilman Bob Clark said he would feel better if he knew what the status was with law enforcement provided by the Madison Township Police and what taxpayers are getting for the $600,000 they pay to the township for police service.

Community Center update
On Aug. 31, the Director of the Ohio Department of Health issued an order allowing the re-opening of Adult Day Care and Senior Centers effective Sept. 21.

While there are still a few hoops to jump through, Contract Services Administrator Bill Sims said the city is getting ready to reopen the Frances Steube Community Center on a limited basis.

“There is a laundry list of things we have to do,” said Sims.

According to Sims, the community/senior center staff will need to be tested for COVID-19 on a bi-weekly basis and there must be a written plan in place for building use, including a maximum 50 percent capacity and social distancing depending on the activity.

“We’re certainly able to do it,” Sims said. “These are established rules to protect the most vulnerable. Right now, we’re required, if we use it as a senior center, to maintain a daily log (for contact tracing, if necessary).”

Although the center will be available for rental, Sims said precautions need to be taken to ensure no co-mingling of groups before the area is sanitized.

“It shouldn’t be too difficult if we coordinate,” said Simms.

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