CAMP VERDE – Whether a police department, county sheriff or marshal’s office, law enforcement is sworn to protect and serve – and to uphold the law.
Bu not everyone knows that the Camp Verde Marshal’s Office is in fact the town’s police department, just under a different moniker.
That’s one reason why Camp Verde Marshal Nancy Gardner approached Town Council at a Feb. 10 work session to suggest changing CVMO’s name to Camp Verde Police Department.
“The Marshal’s Office has had a difficult time with recruiting deputies and commanders based on the fact that many people do not understand what a marshal’s office is,” Gardner says. “On a weekly basis, I myself am asked by citizens and other police departments what a marshal’s office is. Are we equivalent to that of a police department? And why are we a marshal’s office and not a police department?”
Gardner says that her goal is to be a “futuristic thinker and to attract the best candidates we can for every position” for Camp Verde’s law enforcement agency.
“I have spoken with many high ranking individuals outside of Camp Verde and they too believe that it’s time to change our name to a police department,” Gardner also says. “Although at one time there were many marshal’s offices throughout the state, now there are only two left – all others have adopted a police department title.”
The only other marshal’s offices that remain in Arizona are in Fredonia, Patagonia and Tombstone.
The Tombstone Marshal’s Office has held its name since 1879, “and as far as I know, there are no plans to change it to a police department,” says Tombstone Marshal Bob Randall. “There [are] a lot of historians and townspeople that would turn over in their graves if the notion ever came up.”
At the February work session, Gardner “proposed to the mayor and council thoughts for the future.”
“I was asked to bring back what an estimated cost would be to change the title to a police department. I explained it would be somewhere between $15,500 [to] $17,500 for graphic changes for vehicles, new patches, new badges and for miscellaneous things such as new wording on the sign out front. Most other items are electronic changes that will not cost anything to change.”
According to Camp Verde Town Manager Russ Martin, discussions with council were a proposal tied into a CIP discussion with a request by the mayor for cost information.
“Beyond that,” Martin said, “there is nothing scheduled to be discussed at this time.”
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