Cutting police would be a mistake

Letter to the Editor.

  • Friday, October 3, 2008 3:54am
  • Opinion

We are not in Mayberry, U.S.A. Years ago, it might have been acceptable to have one sheriff and one deputy on duty.

Times have changed and so has the Snoqualmie Police Department. They have done a good job to make this a very safe city. So when I read the bean counters’ version of why the city is so over protected in last week’s Valley Record (Under Fire), I thought I should make a few observations to the statements that were made.

The idea that “two patrol officers on duty 24 hours a day are not needed” is a very serious safety issue for the officers and the public. A single officer on duty can not always count on the King County Sheriffs Department or Washington State Patrol for backup if they need help. Would you want to wait for that additional officer to arrive, or would you rather have two officers ready to respond as soon as the call comes in?

Also, the residents of King County that live around Snoqualmie directly count on the Snoqualmie Police Department for assistance because often there are no King County officers in the area due to lack of manpower. As for comparing the ratio numbers between Snoqualmie and other cities, ask the patrol officers in those cities that have a ratio of 2.1 officers per 1,000 residents if they are understaffed. I’m positive the answer will be a unanimous “yes.”

A police department that is understaffed equals a safety concern for the citizens, as well as the patrol officers. I’m sure that when the average citizen calls 911 they expect help right away and are not going to like the answer that the latest budget cut is why “it took so long for the police to get there.”

In addressing the issue of whether the city is writing too many speeding tickets, there is a simple solution for this: Stop going over the speed limit! Better yet, let’s just increase the speed limit so everybody can go 60 to 70 mph down the Parkway – especially those big trucks that so many people complain about. It is funny that the most vocal opposition to the police department are from the people that have had the most run-ins with them.

The School Resource Officer program (SRO) is one of the best and most well-received ideas that the department has ever had. Cutting their positions when the federal grant runs out will be a great mistake. Let’s ask the parents and teachers of the children in the schools if they feel safer that the SROs are in the school. Then ask the parents and teachers in other schools in the district that do not have SROs if they wish they could have them. The SROs also serve as an additional resource to the officers already on duty if a major incident should arise.

This city has become accustomed to the highest level of service from its police department. Any cuts in staffing will be directly felt by the public when they need it most.

Kelly Gall

North Bend

(Editor’s note: Kelly Gall is a firefighter with the Snoqualmie Department of Public Safety-Fire Division.)

In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

More in Opinion

Federal Way resident Bob Roegner is a former mayor of Auburn. Contact
2022 will be a trial run for 2024 for conservatives | Roegner

Our democracy withstood an attempted coup last Jan. 6, but the planning… Continue reading

Robert Whale can be reached at
Good night, John Boy, from another generation | Whale

When I was growing up in the 1970s, like many others I… Continue reading

Photo courtesy of Greg Asimakoupoulos
Jan. 6, 2021: A date that will live in infamy | Guest column

Jan. 6, 2021. Sadly, for most Americans, that date has become one… Continue reading

Federal Way resident Bob Roegner is a former mayor of Auburn. Contact
Are we driving more recklessly during the pandemic? | Roegner

Have you noticed — pre-snowstorm — more people taking chances with reckless… Continue reading

Robert Whale can be reached at
Don’t fool yourself: COVID’s tentacles are long enough to reach even you | Robert Whale

From March 2020 until recently, it seemed to me that COVID-19 always… Continue reading

Guest columnist Greg Asimakoupoulos is chaplain at Covenant Living at the Shores in Mercer Island.
The cruising altitude of Christmas | Guest column

While flying back east over the holidays to speak at a church,… Continue reading

Federal Way resident Bob Roegner is a former mayor of Auburn. Contact
Violent crime moves local mayors to action | Roegner

It is Christmas throughout the region, and Jim Ferrell, Nancy Backus, Dana… Continue reading

Sean Su (left), a first-generation Taiwanese American activist, was born to Taiwanese immigrants who escaped to the U.S. in the 1980s. Courtesy photo
Understanding the Taiwanese perspective | Guest column

Being Asian in America is a complex experience primarily because the term… Continue reading

Federal Way resident Bob Roegner is a former mayor of Auburn. Contact
Speculation on who might run in 2022 elections | Roegner

If you’re not planning to run for office in 2022, you can… Continue reading