December 14, 2023 UPDATED Press Release-Willows City Council Approves Recently Negotiated 2.5 year Law Enforcement Agreement with the Glenn County Sheriff's Office

December 14, 2023

CONTACT: Richard Thomas, Mayor
Email: Phone: (530) 514-0754

Willows City Council Approves Recently Negotiated2.5 Year Law Enforcement Agreement with the Glenn County Sheriff’s Office (Willows, CA) – Shortly before the current temporary law enforcement agreement expires on December 31, 2023, the City of Willows and Glenn County Sheriff’s Office brokered a new 2.5-year law enforcement services agreement from January 1, 2024, through June 30, 2026.

“I appreciate the time and effort that Sheriff Gibbs and Undersheriff Goodwin have put into these negotiations, and I’m very pleased that the Sheriff accepted our offer," commented Mayor Thomas.
The new agreement totals $6,355,000 over this and the next two fiscal years and will provide the time needed to rebuild the City’s police department. The annual cost breakdown is as follows:

▪ FY 2023-24 - $2,000,000,
▪ FY 2024-25 - $2,000,000, and
▪ FY 2025-26 - $2,355,000.

“I’m delighted that the City’s Law Enforcement Services Ad Hoc Committee, Mayor Thomas and myself, along with City Manager Brown, successfully negotiated a fair and affordable long-term agreement with the Glenn County Sheriff’s Office to continue providing full-service law enforcement services to the City of Willows. Thank you, Sheriff Gibbs and your administrative team, for your collaboration and willingness to work together during these challenging economic times,” commented Councilmember Hansen.

Core services to be provided include, but are not limited to, emergency and non-emergency law enforcement response, patrol, traffic enforcement, traffic collision investigation, criminal investigations, animal control, dispatch services, all Sheriff clerical functions, Public Record Act (PRA) requests as they relate to the Sheriff’s Department, code enforcement duties, and all other calls for law enforcement services provided by the Sheriff’s Office.

Vice-Mayor Vodden commented, “I greatly appreciate the support and partnership of the Glenn County Sheriff’s Office to develop an affordable law enforcement contract that will safeguard our community for the foreseeable future, as well as offer provisions to assist the city as it rebuilds its police department. Thank you!”

Other contract highlights include a 365-day termination notice, monthly invoicing for law enforcement services, and a flexible agreement that allows the City to gradually takeover various aspects of rebuilding its police department as time, resources and funds permit.

When asked to comment on the new agreement, Councilmember Hutson responded: “Thank you to the Law Enforcement Services Ad Hoc Committee for the many hours spent putting together a contract that both parties could agree to on behalf of our beloved town. As a resident and father, I cannot tell you how relieved I am to know that when my family needs law enforcement they will be there. Hopefully, this is a sign of continued cooperation and partnership with the Sheriff’s Office as the City of Willows moves forward to potentially rebuild its police department.”

As the City continues to face fiscal challenges, it’s anticipated that next steps include placing a sales tax measure on the November 2024 ballot, hiring an experienced consulting team to start planning for the future Willows Police Department, and seeking grants to fund infrastructure improvements and equipment and vehicle purchases for the new department.

Councilmember Sprague added, “The future of Willows depends greatly upon a robust economic development strategy. Sherriff Gibbs rightly says that an effective law enforcement agency affects the economic development and growth of an area. His cooperation in composing this law enforcement agreement and his assisting the City Council in rebuilding our police department is deeply appreciated.”