Letter: Criminal expenditure in West Richland

February 27, 2014 

Another waste of taxpayer dollars by the city of West Richland has baffled me. With this countryside city being the size it is and having a small crime rate compared with neighboring areas, one would not expect the police department to purchase a crime van. The cost of updating and maintaining this used vehicle is uncalled for and a waste of revenue.

When asked about this, Mayor Brent Gerry informed me that this unit could bring valuable uses to our community as well as nearby cities and counties. This is laughable. Benton and Franklin counties, as well as Richland, Pasco and Kennewick law enforcement agencies, possess much larger and more modern crime vans. Does he honestly believe that outlying police stations will be banging on our doors at all hours of the day and night, begging and pleading to borrow our small used unit?

The mayor appears to be either delusional or is in denial of living in a community of this size. He and the chief of police need to realize that this is a community where the hard-working citizens deserve much more for their dollars. They deserve much more than a crime van in a low-crime area.

GARY L. SOMDAHL, West Richland

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