Washoe County Sheriff Chuck Allen said earlier this week there is no truth to the rumor he is shutting down the Incline Village substation because of budget cuts.
Allen said effective Monday, Feb. 19, the substation will lose its resident lieutenant. That post will be transferred to Washoe Valley.
But he said the substation will remain in business staffed by a sergeant and four full-time resident deputies as well as deputies assigned to Incline on a rotating basis to cover other shifts.
"That's not to say they'll never see a lieutenant again," Allen said adding that the substation commander is "kind of the face of the sheriff's office up there."
He said lieutenants, captains and even he will go to Incline Village when needed to participate in community meetings and other events.
Allen said the change is just one on a list of moves he has been forced to make to rein in a growing budget shortfall. He said before July 1, he has to reduce spending by an estimated $500,000.
"I've got to make some hard budget cuts because of the way the budget is tracking," he said. "Overtime is bleeding immensely."
Moving the lieutenant's post — currently held by Lt. Michelle Bello — down the mountain saves money because Incline duty comes with special duty pay to cover the high cost of living there.
Allen said last year, overtime costs were covered by salary savings from 30 vacant positions. Right now, he said, the department has just 11 vacant positions in a total staff of 727 including 424 sworn posts.
Allen said the biggest changes will come at the jail that serves not only Washoe County but Reno and Sparks police departments. He said he had to move three positions back off the streets to the jail in the valley. He also had to pull the roving deputy post from the courthouse.
Allen pointed out that, in many cases, he can't control overtime — especially if there is a significant event that requires a response.
He said he also is going to have to start having non-injury accident victims file their own reports online.
"I'm probably the biggest opponent to having civilians make reports online but, at the end of the day, I have to listen to the recommendations," he said.
The substation is located at 625 Mt Rose Highway, Incline Village, NV 89451. Hours are Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2-5 p.m., excluding holidays.
The substation's non-emegency dispatch number is 775-785-927. The administration number is 775-832-4107. For more information, visit http://www.washoesheriff.com.