Nevada City has made the decision to take advantage of COVID related funding for its police department after initially holding off on moving forward with the Nevada County Administrative Offices. The county is distributing funds through the CARES Act to local law enforcement agencies to collaboprate and assit with education and enforcement of COVID related restrictions and mandates.
The decison to sign the agreement coming after the county clarified the money could be used to pay for existing services and not hire a new police officer. Police Chief Chad Ellis shared a number of appropriate expenses, including his current code officer and possible legal support.
Though originally against taking money for a new police officer, council members Daniela Fernandez and Doug Fleming are now ok with the funding.
Two weeks ago, and only three days after violence broke out on Broad Street during a Black Lives Matter march, the council directed cty to staff to not sign the MOU because the information had been interpreted that the money was to be used to hire an additional code enforcement officer. Council also directed staff to seek clarification from the county.
Public comment was primarily against the city taking the funds, because of the perception it was to increase the size of the police department.