Steamboat Springs High School resource officer Josh Carrell talks with students Dec. 9. Carrell's contract has been approved by the Steamboat Springs School Board and involves the cost being split between the school district and police department.

File photo

Steamboat Springs High School resource officer Josh Carrell talks with students Dec. 9. Carrell's contract has been approved by the Steamboat Springs School Board and involves the cost being split between the school district and police department.

Police officer joins district staff

City officials, high school reach salary-sharing agreement

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— Steamboat Springs Police Resource Officer Josh Carrell is an official member of the Steamboat Springs School District staff following a memorandum of understanding between the city and the district.

At the request of the Steamboat Springs Police Department, the district now will pay half of Carrell's salary and part of his benefits.

With the understanding came a new set of "essential duties and responsibilities" that will factor into Carrell's reviews with city and district officials.

Steamboat Springs Public Safety Director J.D. Hays, Carrell's boss for the police, said he is pleased with Carrell's performance and that he does not expect the new understanding to change any of his basic duties.

"Even before this agreement he was involved in classes, leadership and the law enforcement committee at the high school," he said.

Hays said he expects Carrell also will continue to help at Steamboat Springs Middle School and the elementary schools as requested, although those requirements are not specified in the agreement.

"I see him lending a hand maybe when asked at the other schools and helping out a little bit," Hays said. "I'm sure there are times they'll call him and ask him to answer questions."

The Strawberry Park campus, with an elementary and middle school, is outside of city limits and falls under Routt County Sheriff's Office jurisdiction, but Hays said he would like Carrell to help out until the Sheriff's Office creates a school resource officer position of its own.

Carrell assists in a leadership class and regularly meets with students at the high school to share ideas and hear input. He also works at after-school activities including basketball games and dances.

During the summer months Carrell will return to normal police duties, but will be the primary responder for juvenile-related problems in the police department, according to the agreement.

In the negotiation process with the district the terms of the salary sharing were changed slightly so the district will pay only half of the normal district benefits. Because the city's police benefits are higher than the district's, the city will cover the remainder of the benefits, and Hays said there will be no changes to Carrell's salary or benefits.

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