Wednesday, August 16, 2006
LEAD task force funding renewed
Funding for a regional narcotics task force headquartered in
Sunnyside continues after Yakima County commissioners inked a renewed agreement
Called the LEAD Task Force (Law Enforcement Against Drugs),
the joint effort of city, county, state and federal law enforcement officers is
funded through a grant program administered by the state of Washington.
Daniel Garcia, undersheriff for the Yakima County Sheriff's
office, said task force participants include law enforcement representatives
from Sunnyside, Granger, Grandview, Selah, Wapato, the Yakama Nation, the
county Sheriff, state patrol and the U.S. Department of Justice.
The grant amount received this year from the state
department of Community, Trade and Economic Development tops $283,000, with
just under $235,000 designated for task force enforcement and just over $48,000
set aside for prosecution.
Garcia said typical costs associated with the program
include renting and outfitting an office in Sunnyside, maintaining equipment
and a computer network, training, travel and overtime when officers perform
work associated with the task force.
Money is also set aside for what Garcia called "buy
money" used for setting up sting operations in bringing down drug dealers
The contract approved by county commissioners yesterday
lists the Sheriff's office as the regional representative for the task force.
Garcia said the Sheriff's office receives the funds, then disperses them to the
task force as needed.
County approves bonds for dairy
After tabling discussion on Aug. 1, Yakima County
commissioners yesterday proceeded with approval of $2.5 million in low
interest, tax-exempt bonds for the George DeRuyter and Sons Dairy in Outlook.
The bonds are the last piece of financing for the dairy's $4
million project to convert cattle manure into a renewable energy source. The
Outlook dairy had previously been approved for federal grants and loans toward
the conversion, which requires equipment known as an anaerobic digester.
The dairy hopes to have construction completed and producing
power for up to 200 homes by this October.
County looks to sell land parcels
The potential sale of 24 parcels of land throughout Yakima
County will be the topic of a public hearing on Tuesday, Aug. 29.
Yakima County commissioners agreed to set the hearing to
gain public comment on whether the parcels should be sold as surplus property.
The parcels, some in the Lower Valley, range in size from a
piece of land less than one-tenths of an acre near Outlook to others with up to
The hearing will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Aug. 29 in the
commissioners' hearing room in the basement of the courthouse.