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Nye commissioners allocate $286k for new NCSO radar units

With only a handful of functioning radar units in use by local law enforcement, the Nye County Sheriff’s Office says it is in sore need of a technology upgrade. But the department won’t be bereft for long.

In February, the Nye County Commission allocated $268,200 in revenue collected from a Public Safety Sales Tax to purchase new radar units for the department’s entire patrol fleet.

“We want to equip all of our patrol vehicles with radar units so we can conduct speed enforcement, whether it be in town, out on the highway, in between here and Beatty, Beatty and Tonopah, out in the Round Mountain area, etc.,” Nye County Sheriff Joe McGill told commissioners at the first of five separate PSST proposals.

The Public Safety Sales Tax, or PSST, was established in 2014 at a rate of half-a-cent per dollar on purchases in the county. The funds are to be used solely for the purpose of improving public safety. As of the commission’s Feb. 22 meeting, the PSST funds for Nye County, Pahrump, Beatty, Gabbs and Manhattan collectively had around $3.16 million in available resources.

In addition to requesting an allocation of $1.54 million for reoccurring costs from previous years, the five spending proposals for 2023 asked for approximately $268,200 to fund the purchase of the new radar units. As McGill explained during the meeting, the cost of the units will be borne proportionately across the various communities.

“The different communities are paying a percentage equal to their percentage of contribution to the PSST,” McGill stated.

As detailed by the spending proposals, “90% of our patrol vehicles are not outfitted with radar units, and the few that are outfitted, have antiquated units with antiquated technology. This purchase is to outfit all Nye County patrol deputies with radar units in their vehicles. Nye County has seen an influx of speed-related accidents and fatalities and this purchase will ensure our deputies have the most up-to-date technology available to us to combat speed-related traffic concerns.

“These radar units have upgraded technology that shows the strongest and fastest target vehicles from the front and rear antennas simultaneously,” the proposals continued. “The units also allow for alternative modes for each direction to ensure versatility of situations. This unit also allows the operator to transmit from both radar antennas at the same time. This technology allows deputies to monitor four vehicles from just one antenna. This technology makes the radar device substantially more versatile and accurate.”

McGill said the particular unit that had been selected, the DSR 2x Radar with Fast Lock, had been chosen because of this flexibility, remarking, “This is a great improvement on the radar technology that we currently have.”

McGill also noted that the radar units will not go to waste in the event that a patrol car or motorcycle is no longer suitable for use. The units can be removed from decommissioned patrol vehicles and reinstalled into new ones if needed in the future.

All five of the proposed PSST spending plans were approved by unanimous vote.

Contact reporter Robin Hebrock at rhebrock@pvtimes.com

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