Sat, April 04

Waugh to run again
Sheriff repeats journey down campaign trail

Sheriff Steve Waugh announced his re-election campaign for Yavapai County Sheriff Thursday, filing the necessary papers at the County Elections Department in Prescott.

In declaring his candidacy early, Waugh said, "I always like being first; first to file, first to hit the campaign trail and, with the support of my constituents, first when the votes are counted."

During his earlier campaign, Waugh had developed a Six Point Plan to improve management of the Sheriff's Office. The six points included: reduce response time, fiscal accountability, improve employee morale, jail audit and review, community involvement and aggressive crime fighting.

"The Six Point Plan from the 2004 campaign was clearly needed, and has been totally implemented," says Steve Skurja, committee chair. "It appears to be working well, and Sheriff Waugh has made it clear he intends to keep using it in the future, since it provides a solid basis for meeting the needs of the citizens".

Teamwork has been key to the success of the Sheriff's office, according to Waugh, "We as a team have accomplished a lot over the last two and a half years. The jail is one of the best managed in the state and has increased its revenues significantly to offset costs to the taxpayer.

"Response times to critical calls for service are down 30 percent. With this year's budget and re-assignments of personnel we will have 25 additional deputies in the field, which equates to a 27 percent increase in patrol personnel. Finally, with our aggressive approach to crime prevention, the fast growing unincorporated areas of Yavapai County have seen a decrease of 4 percent in major crime."

Cost considerations have led the Sheriff's Office to replace the School Resource Officers in county schools with the program, "Do Right by Kids."

The program focuses on the issues of bullying, cyber crime, weapons in the home and drugs.

The program is funded by private donations and will use a model now in operation in the Verde Valley. Waugh says that model implements one officer for four schools, the Village of Oak Creek, Beaver Creek, Cornville and Dr. Daniel Bright elementary schools.

He says the office must also focus on replacing the jail on the Prescott side of Yavapai County. That new jail must be constructed at the Sundog site before the old jail and administrative building is converted for Superior Courts.

The department will also solidify its agreement with federal marshals to rent jail space to defer some costs for managing the jail system.

Finally, Waugh wants to increase the number of deputies on the street.

A decorated Vietnam veteran, Sheriff Waugh began his 33-year law enforcement career in the streets as a patrol officer. Over the next 23 years, Waugh worked his way up the supervisory and leadership ladder both in the field and in jail administration.

Waugh and his wife Barbara are actively involved in the community and many local organizations. Waugh has an AA in Law Enforcement, a BA in Criminal Justice, and is a graduate of both the FBI National Academy and the Senior Management Institute for Police, Harvard.

Steve Waugh and the Committee to Re-Elect Sheriff Steve Waugh can be reached by calling (928) 308-5976 or by e-mail at

Skurja also chaired Waugh's original election campaign in 2004. Committee treasurer is John Stevens. The Primary Election for Yavapai County sheriff will be in September 2008.

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