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Sandy cops bid to cover Estacada

Whether the sheriff or Sandy gets the nod depends on a May 13 vote in Estacada


The Sandy Police Department has put in a bid to provide law enforcement for the city of Estacada.

After Estacada officials asked Sandy Police Chief Kim Yamashita to place a bid, she discussed the issue with the Sandy City Council.

While promoting Sandy police services, Yamashita talked with Estacada city officials and debated the issue with Clackamas County Sheriff Craig Roberts in front of Estacada residents.

The Sandy bid is approximately $43,500 lower than the Clackamas County bid. The sheriff’s department has been covering Estacada, with officers assigned or on call to that city since 1978.

The Estacada council plans to reach a decision at its May 13 meeting. If it chooses Sandy, Yamashita would take the proposal to the Sandy City Council for its approval.

Should Sandy be chosen and accept the new responsibility, Yamashita said law enforcement in Sandy would not be reduced.

“We would never do anything to compromise the safety or service for the citizens of Sandy,” she said. “We looked at the feasibility of providing services to Estacada with that premise foremost in our thoughts.”

To cover two cities, Yamashita said she’d have to hire two more officers. If Sandy is chosen, the plan is to assign two of Sandy’s experienced officers to Estacada and hire two new recruits to assist in Sandy.

During the debate in Estacada, Roberts tried to show the breadth of services available to Estacada, including 500 employees, Drug Task Force, Street Crime Unit, Internet Crimes Task Force, Financial Fraud Unit and more.

Yamashita said she didn’t have 500 employees, but she did have a talented staff, and promised that the officers assigned to Estacada would have to apply and would be interviewed to select those who are most qualified for the assignment.

One business owner from Estacada voiced the view that she has always had a concern that Estacada deputies don’t want to be in that outlying city.

Another resident, who went to a business that had been burglarized, said the burglary — which had been called to 9-1-1 at 8 a.m. that day — still had no deputy investigating at 10 a.m.

But a school district employee said he had nothing but praise for the services provided by the sheriff’s department.

Another resident of Estacada, who said he has nothing against the deputies, was impressed with Sandy because Yamashita “has taken Sandy to a new level” with accreditation of the police department.

Yamashita told The Post that her officers are excited about the opportunity for growth and with establishing a presence in Estacada and keeping the community safe.

“We will remain dedicated to the city of Sandy,” she said. “Nothing here will change. We will just bring that same level of dedication to the city of Estacada. We will not be taking anything away from our department; we will just be adding. This opportunity would be beneficial to both cities.”

For more information, call Yamashita at 503-668-5566 or Estacada City Manager Bill Elliott at 503-630-8270, ext. 204.