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Mele Reviews Department Status

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Sonora, CA — Tuolumne County Sheriff Jim Mele had the opportunity to review his department´s direction before the Board of Supervisors Tuesday.

Mele commented on the significance of his various Town Hall meetings. Mele stated that the department now has a much clearer vision of how to properly serve the various communities within the county.

Mele also summerized the issuance of the department´s Mission, Value and Vision Statement in addition to summarizing changes in his command structure.

The sheriff also commented on the need for additional personnel. He cited 20 vacancies within the department that need to be filled. He added that limited financial resources are a major concern. Mele cited a Modesto Bee article which stated that Tuolumne County Sheriff´s deputies are hired at a salary of $3,115 a month while an entry level police officer hired in Tracy will be paid $4,765 a month. Over a year´s time that´s close to a $20,000 difference.

Mele also commented on the effect that tasers have had on reducing injuries to deputies on patrol and in the County Jail. Mele noted that $1.2 million in workmens´s compensation claims have been paid out for injuries on the job. Since the issuance of tasers several months ago, six deployments have been executed resulting in not a single deputy injury.

Written by Bill Johnson