Over the past several years, the City of Granite Falls has suffered serious revenue losses due to the economic downturn. These revenue losses have resulted in a significant shortfall in the General Fund and a resulting inability to continue to fund, at current levels, the police department. In an effort to save money, the Granite Falls City Council will decide on October 3 whether or not to eliminate its police department and outsource its law enforcement requirements to the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office.
A citizen’s grassroots effort has sprung up to encourage alternative solutions that will keep the Granite Falls Police Department intact. The Pilchuck Foundation is part of these efforts.
At a recent City Council meeting the Foundation president, Ken Shefveland proposed an alternative staffing model that would retain the department at a cost below that proposed by the sheriff’s office and with a significantly better level of service. In addition, he introduced an additional funding opportunity, developed by citizens, to launch a fundraising campaign that will be run over a three year period.
In the event that the Council decides to retain its police department, the Pilchuck Foundation is prepared to lead the community capital campaign fundraising effort to help the police department. Specifically, the Foundation will raise $450,000 that will be used to establish grants for training and equipment. These grants will be designed to augment the current police budget.
A “Pledge Your Support” booth will be set up at this year’s Railroad & Reunion Days event (October 6th). The Foundation encourages everyone to stop by the booth and pledge their support to keep our police department. In addition, the Foundation encourages all of the citizens of Granite Falls to contact the mayor and the city council members and provide them feedback. The deadline is October 3rd.