Navarre to take questions on plans to end road patrols

Kelly J. Kaczala

        Jerusalem Township Trustees will hold a virtual public meeting on March 23 at 7 p.m. to discuss plans by the Lucas County sheriff to end road patrols in less than two years.
        Sheriff Mike Navarre will attend the meeting to take questions from the public.
        The virtual meeting will be held remotely due to the pandemic. The public can sign up via Zoom on the township’s website to be part of the meeting and ask questions.
        Navarre told township trustees last month that road patrols in the township will end January 1, 2023 unless the township pays $500,000 annually for the service.
        Jerusalem Township is one of eight townships in the county to be informed by the sheriff that they will be billed to continue road patrols in their communities.
        In 2020, Lucas County Commissioners, in cutting the budget noted that the sheriff’s office is not required to conduct road patrols in the townships. Legally, the sheriff has certain responsibilities, they said. Road patrols are not among them.
        Still, former Sheriff John Tharp continued the road patrols. His term ended last year. He didn’t seek re-election. Trustee Mark Sattler had hoped whoever won the election for sheriff last November would also continue with road patrols. But Navarre made it clear in February that the township, along with other townships in Lucas County, would have to pay. 
        Sattler said the township does not have the financial resources to afford the $500,000 annual price tag for the sheriff to continue to provide one deputy on duty 24/7.
         The township located at the eastern tip of Lucas County, has about 3,100 residents and 1,100 homes.
Limited revenue
        The township’s revenue sources are property taxes, fuel taxes and hotel taxes. The majority comes from property taxes.
        Possible options include placing a levy on the ballot to fund the sheriff’s patrols, or contracting with a neighboring community to provide preventative road patrol services, said Sattler.
        “We have limited revenue sources,” said Sattler. “Mostly it’s property taxes. The last thing we want to do is increase the property taxes for our residents. Everyone is already concerned about the amount of taxes they pay. The only way we could raise $500,000 is to pass a levy.”
        Sattler doubts the township could challenge the Lucas County Commissioners’ position that the sheriff is not responsible for road patrols.
        “The township’s legal counsel is the Lucas County prosecutor. And the Lucas County prosecutor has indicated that the county commissioners are correct -that keeping the peace does not include road patrols,” said Sattler.
         Sattler is urging the public to sign up for the virtual meeting so they can ask Navarre questions about ending road patrols. Information on how to join the virtual Zoom meeting is on the township’s website at


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