Helen Russell recently pursued a STEP grant for police traffic enforcement in Eagle, set to take effect in 2025. It's worth noting that she emphasized the need for sustainable revenue sources beyond property taxes for public safety growth.
Interestingly, when I, Councilman Pike, explored grant options earlier this year, I was told by a city staff member in March 2023 that a police services grant was not possible. This raises questions about the sudden change in perspective.
This grant aims to fund new traffic enforcement officers, something the Mayor was previously opposed to for Eagle's roads and highways within city limits. It's important to mention that Mayor Pierce argued in favor of reallocating current officers rather than budgeting for new ones, insisting that the Sheriff should provide traffic enforcement resources at no additional cost to Eagle.
Now, with the upcoming election, there appears to be a shift in stance, where the Mayor and three council members, including Russell, are supporting hiring new officers. This change in position raises questions about their previous intentions.
I've consistently advocated for budgeting for additional officers for the past four years, a proposal that faced resistance. It's disappointing to see efforts to portray me negatively when the real issue lies with those shifting their positions for political gain. In the interest of transparency and honesty, I believe it's essential to acknowledge these developments and hold our elected officials accountable for their actions.