POLITICS + GOVERNMENT

Salt Lake County Sheriff won’t fight bill to disband Unified Police

Feb 14, 2023, 7:00 PM | Updated: Feb 15, 2023, 12:44 pm

Salt Lake County Sheriff Rosie Rivera said that she's been backed into a political corner over H.B....

FILE: A Unified police vehicle is pictured outside of the Unified Police Magna Precinct in Magna on Monday, June 6, 2022.

Sheriff Rosie Rivera joined Dave and Dujanvoic live to discuss what would happen if the UPD disappears. The audio is podcast below.

 

SALT LAKE CITY — Salt Lake County Sheriff Rosie Rivera said that she’s been backed into a political corner over H.B. 374, a bill that would disband the Unified Police Department. 

And Millcreek Mayor Jeff Silvestrini said H.B. 374 is not in his city’s best interest.

Few problems with Unified Police

This is some of the reaction to a bill being run by Rep. Jordan Teuscher, R-South Jordan, who told KSL NewsRadio on Monday that there are a few problems with how the Unified Police Department is run.

Teucher’s concerns involve what he calls a conflict of interest for Salt Lake County Sheriff Rosie Rivera and cities, like his, that have their own police agency. He also said that Utahns in areas that have their own police agencies, but which are also served by Unified Police, are being double taxed.

If passed, H.B.374 dissolves the Unified Police Department on July 1, 2025.

While opposed to the idea, Rivera won’t oppose the bill

While she is leery of H.B. 374, Rivera said Tuesday that she will not oppose it.

“I have a responsibility to create long-term stability for public safety, and that’s what I’m doing here today,” Rivera said, “standing before our residents of Salt Lake County and the people who work for UPD.”

“If we were to kill, the sponsor has said he will continue to bring it back. This problem will not go away.”

H.B.374 gives cities two years to create their own police force or to contract with the Salt Lake County Sheriff’s Office. 

Millcreek mayor will oppose H.B.374

Silvestrini told KSL NewsRadio he doesn’t believe there is an issue of double taxation.

“I think UPD has done a good job of accounting for that and (is) only charging the county for things that are truly county-wide services,” Silvestrini said.

Silvestrini said he believes UPD is valuable for his community and others, and is opposed to H.B.374.

“I don’t believe it’s in our best interest, and (I) would work with the mayors of Holladay and Midvale and the other communities to see if they have interest in continuing to be involved in a multi-jurisdictional police agency,” Silvestrini said.

H.B.374 will be heard in the House Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Committee on Wednesday, Feb. 15 at 8 a.m.

Related reading:  Unified Police Department could be eliminated under new proposed bill

 

Jeff Caplan’s Afternoon News can be heard on weekdays from 3 to 7 p.m.

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Salt Lake County Sheriff won’t fight bill to disband Unified Police