Sheriff Navarre to end patrols in Jerusalem Township

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.
        Newly elected Sheriff Mike 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. 
A burden
        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.
        “It’s very frustrating,” said Sattler. “As residents of Lucas County, we pay various types of taxes, including sales taxes. We thought we were already paying for this. Jerusalem Township has nowhere near the ability to pay $500,000 per year.”
         The township located at the eastern tip of Lucas County, has about 3,100 residents and 1,100 homes.
        “It would be a tremendous burden for such a small population to pay the $500,000 bill. We don’t want to do that,” he said.
        The township’s revenue sources are property taxes, fuel taxes and hotel taxes. The majority comes from property taxes.
        In addition, the township has to pay for Lucas County 911 consolidation operations that began last October.
        “That imposes an additional funding burden on all of the jurisdictions, including Jerusalem Township. That is a four-year phase in. We’re now in year one of that four year phase-in. We’re expected to pay a portion of that cost, which for us is in the $40,000-$60,000 range. For the first year, we pay nothing. Then, we pay a small percent the second year, 50 percent the third year, and 100 percent the fourth year.”
Keep the peace
        Sattler said he was concerned by the decision made by county commissioners last year that the sheriff is not required by law to provide road patrols.
        “The commissioners said the sheriff is only required to keep the peace. They said keeping the peace does not include preventative road patrols. It only includes maintaining the jail and responding to 911 calls,” he said.
        If road patrols end in the township, 911 calls would be dispatched from downtown Toledo.
        “The response time would not be good,” said Sattler.
        Preventative road patrols is a valuable deterrent to crime, said Sattler.
        “They are driving around, introducing themselves, stopping to talk to residents, looking for things that look a little bit out of order. Just making sure the sheriff is seen in the township is quite a deterrent. It shows that the law is present in the township,” he said.
        The township for years has provided a substation for the sheriff’s office in the town hall complex.
        “We provide office space for the sheriff’s deputies at our expense, and there’s usually a car or two in the parking lot. I can’t tell you how often there’s a sheriff’s deputy in our township. The sheriff, at my request, provided us with the last three years of call volumes. He estimated there was someone in the township 75 percent of the time,” he said.
Less presence
        Outgoing Sheriff Tharp intended to keep a sheriff’s deputy present in the township and to continue with the road patrol, he said.
        “Sheriff Navarre put us on notice that in January of 2023, there will be no deputy presence in the township. Between now and then, there will be less of a presence as staffing in the sheriff’s office is cut. So we’ll see less and less of a presence in the next one and three quarter years,” said Sattler.
        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.
        “Certainly, there are no decisions yet on what we’re going to do. The next thing for us to do is to have the sheriff attend a meeting and allow him to explain his position to the public,” he said.
        Navarre has agreed to join the meeting on March 23 to discuss his plans and answer questions from the community.
        Sattler is urging township residents to join the virtual meeting on Zoom to ask Navarre questions.
        “We want to create the opportunity in a public meeting for the township residents to hear directly from the sheriff. This is their opportunity to hear what he has to say and to ask him questions,” said Sattler.
         Information on how to join the virtual Zoom meeting is at the township’s website at


The Press

The Press
1550 Woodville Road
Millbury, OH 43447

(419) 836-2221

Email Us

Facebook Twitter

Ohio News Media Association