Williams County commissioners met on Monday, and there was some spirited discussion between the sheriff and the commissioners.
While the commissioners called it a “philosophical difference” Sheriff Steve Towns says it’s the commissioners’ way of “manipulating” his department.
The disagreement centers on the commissioners refusal to increase the sheriff’s budget to make room for two additional deputies.
The Bryan Times reports that Commission President Alan Word, who is a former county sheriff himself, told Sheriff Towns the commissioners would approve a 13.3 percent increase for the Sheriff’s Office. About half of that increase is necessary to fund raises for road deputies included in their current three-year contract.
Towns was also however, seeking about $100,000 in new funding to add two new deputies, bringing the total up to 16 road patrol deputies, still five less than 2008.
According to Sheriff Towns, the Williams County Sheriff’s Office is among the lowest funded per capita in the state of Ohio.