Lamar County Sheriff asks commissioners for more employees

LAMAR COUNTY, TX - For the second straight year Sheriff Scott Cass is asking commissioners for a new deputy as well as another dispatcher.

Cass says his employees are racking up too much overtime.

"To date, just for that particular division (dispatch), we have over 900 hours of overtime that has accrued." said Cass.

Dispatch Supervisor Taneesha Edwards says dispatchers are constantly having to come in on their days off.

"It would take a load off everyone, we would be able to have a personal life and not have to stay at work all the time." said Edwards. "I mean there are some people putting 24 to 30 hours a week of overtime."

The sheriff's office has six dispatchers for the 50,00 residents in Lamar County, with only two on duty at a time.

"There are times were I've been on that phone and another phone, talking to two different people." said Edwards.

Edwards says even one more dispatcher would improve safety all around.

"That means there's three of us in here that can take calls, there's three of us that able to put those calls in and get deputies sent out." said Edwards. "There's three of us that are going to be able to watch our deputies backs and not miss them screaming for help or asking us for something."

Sheriff Cass told commissioners that the overtime accrued so far this year could almost pay the salary of a new dispatcher. Cass also requested a new deputy because deputies are doing more and more mental needs transports.

"We have a lot of overtime hours that accruing through our mental health transport." said Cass.

Commissioners will continue the budget workshops this week, finalizing next years budget.


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