Half-time deputies arrive in Bay City

Bay City now has dedicated law enforcement in the form of a pair of sheriff deputies sharing a single part-time position.
By Jordan Wolfe
Guest Contributor
Without a police department to call their own, the City of Bay City has been at the mercy of nearby sheriff deputies tasked with patrolling large swaths of the county.
“Even on a fully staffed day, sometimes Bay City gets neglected,” Tillamook County Sheriff’s Office (TCSO) Lieutenant James Horton said.
That will no longer be the case for the foreseeable future.
After several months of negotiations, the City of Bay City signed an agreement with TCSO that went into effect Aug. 1 for the City to fund a $50,000 half-time sheriff deputy to be assigned to Bay City for general law enforcement and code enforcement, among other duties.
“With dedicated deputies, they will be able to investigate calls for service,” Horton said. “They will be able to resolve calls sooner and resolve issues sooner.”
According to Horton, the contract is similar to TCSO’s contract with the City of Garibaldi that he said has been very successful – but came with a side effect.
“With consistent presence in Garibaldi, criminal activity settled down in Bay City,” Horton said. “We’re seeing instant results with just adding the mere presence in Bay City.”
The biggest challenge while penning the contract was figuring out who exactly would be assigned the task to patrol Bay City. However, a pair of retirees with a desire to still serve a community were just what TCSO was looking for.
“We have these two men who weren’t quite ready to leave law enforcement,” Horton said. “It was really meant to be.”
With ties to Tillamook County, the two who have been brought on to patrol Bay City are Mike Arnold, a retired sergeant from Forest Grove Police Department (FGPD) and Scott Griffith, a retired officer with FGPD. Each of the men have more than 20 years’ experience in law enforcement and have been sharing the 20-hour position. Arnold and Griffith began working shifts in October and Horton said it has been a positive experience so far. The contract runs through July 31, 2019 and Horton said negotiations will begin in the spring to keep the contract going.
“We hope to continue,” Horton said, “We want to continue.”

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