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Electra City Leaders Ready to Rebuild Police Department

Electra leaders are working to rebuild their police department after firing their longtime police chief Johnny Morris.
Electra leaders are working to rebuild their police department after firing their longtime police chief Johnny Morris.

Electra Mayor Curtis Warner says they actually received one application on Wednesday for one of their officer openings which he sees as a good sign.

Meanwhile, Wichita County Judge Woody Gossum says they're getting ready to bill the City of Electra for its use of Wichita County Sheriff's deputies.

Mayor Warner says Electra is a good town to work in.

"We need some good officers to come in and join up with us," Warner exclaims. 

Warner says the city's police department has a few vacant positions: police chief, three new police officers and two dispatchers.

To assist the city, Wichita County Sheriff's deputies have been patrolling Electra city limits since late September.

Warner says, "The deputies from Wichita County are doing a marvelous job. They're certainly on Electra's team. They're well-accepted by our folks."

However, it comes with a hefty price tag.

Warner says last year, city commissioners approved a $600,000 budget for its police department but it's costing the city around $10,000 a week to have Wichita County Sheriff's deputies patrol the city.

"We're receiving very qualified assistance from the sheriff's department but that very qualified assistance comes with a cost that is above what we would normally be paying but at the same time we're saving money that we are not paying our other officers," Warner says.

Judge Gossum says the price is worth it when it comes to protecting the public.

However, he says it's a tab that will have to be paid sooner than later.

"We're going to work with them on it but we also have to be responsible to our taxpayers because this wasn't budgeted for us," Judge Gossum says. "But, we can carry them until they get their payments lined out and do that so that's not a problem."

Judge Gossum says he expects the first billing statement to be sent out this week which will cover between two to six weeks of sheriff's deputies' service.

He says based on their agreement, the first payment will be due 30 days after they bill them.

If you are interested in applying for one of the vacant positions at the Electra Police Department, call Electra City Hall at 940.495.2146.
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