Law enforcement plays a critical role in our safe and thriving community. One way this is achieved is through the services provided by the Ada County Sheriff’s Office (ACSO) and the collaborative working relationship with the Meridian Police Department. Recently ACSO Lieutenant Matt Clifford – who was contracted to the City of Eagle and serving as their Police Chief – was sworn in as our new Ada County Sheriff. I applaud the decision of Chairman Rod Beck and Commissioner Kendra Kenyon for selecting Matt Clifford. I have had the opportunity and pleasure to get to know Sheriff Clifford through the process of being selected, and our Police Chief Tracy Basterrechea has known and worked with him for years. The Commissioners made the right choice as Matt Clifford not only has the knowledge, skills, and abilities, but he has instilled trust and demonstrated leadership for the citizens of Ada County.
As a City, we depend on the County and the Sherriff’s Office for a variety of law enforcement and related services. These are core services with a wide scope of responsibilities that meet a variety of needs for our residents such as the Ada County Jail, Ada County Coroner’s Office, and Ada County Court Services to name a few.
One ACSO service I am looking forward to is the new Driver’s License Office which is scheduled to open this fall in Meridian (736 S. Progress Ave). This new Meridian location will have 16 customer service windows, ready to provide residents easy access to driver’s license testing, renewals and more. This new Driver’s License Office will use the appointment-only system, located HERE.
Another core service from the ACSO that I want to highlight is the state-of-the-art emergency dispatch center. This is an essential service to the entire Ada County as they handle all public calls for service and coordinate Meridian police, fire and Emergency Medical Service movement. We are proud that this partner in safety has their headquarters located here in Meridian - the heart of the Treasure Valley.
As we grow in Ada County, many of these services also need investment to keep up with demand. We know there have been conversations about the need to expand the jail. In addition, a new Coroner’s Office is planned to be built in Meridian. Over the next few months, I will be touring many of the existing facilities where I look forward to learning more about the services and challenges they are facing in providing services to Meridian and all of Ada County.
Being a safe community is not by accident. As a City, we are making our own investments in public safety as we complete the scenario village at our Public Safety Training Center and consider the construction of two precincts – one in the northwest and one in the southeast – to help us maintain services levels. The Meridian Police Department, working together with all our law enforcement partners, helps keeps our community safe which is a vital part of being the West’s premier community in which to live, work and raise a family.