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Grant allows Incline Village to get more deputies

By Carla O'Day
Published: Last Updated on
Washoe County Sheriff's Office. Image: Bob Conrad.

A foundation run by an Incline Village billionaire is providing the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office with funds to place more law enforcement officers in the Lake Tahoe area for the next 5 years.

Washoe County commissioners on Tuesday accepted an $11.7 million grant from the Dave & Cheryl Duffield Foundation. The Incline Village Law Enforcement Team Grant will be used to pay for one full-time captain, one full-time lieutenant, four full-time sergeants, and five full-time deputy sheriffs.

In addition to base pay, the grant also includes overtime, insurance, retirement contributions, vehicles, and communications equipment through June 2026.

“This is to reinstall the deputies that were cut many years ago (back) into Incline Village,” Chairman Bob Lucey said. “I think this is an area we try to serve continuously but it’s very difficult, especially with the number of deputies we have there at any given time.”

Although the Incline Village-Crystal Bay permanent population is listed by the U.S. Census Bureau at approximately 8,600 residents, the area sees a large influx of visitors and vehicular traffic at numerous points each year.

Current patrol in the area has been limited, with the primary concern being response to calls for service and other immediate public safety concerns. Deputies assigned to Incline Village are only able to address traffic and parking concerns when not responding to immediate calls for service, Sheriff Darin Balaam said.

Longtime residents have expressed a desire for the Sheriff’s Office to return to the time where there was a community presence in Incline Village, including events such as picnics, holiday parades, schools, water safety awareness and other favorite community events.

The grant doesn’t call for a county match.

“There [are] no requirements attached to this grant,” Commissioner Alexis Hill said. “Although no cash match is required, there’s no other ask from the Duffields other than a report, just as if we’d report to any other grantee.”

Balaam said his office routinely reports to grantors, whether it be the federal government or a private foundation, so each can be assured the county isn’t redirecting grant funds for specific purposes to other sources.

“It’s nothing out of the ordinary,” Balaam said. “We do this with all grants and we do a quarterly and yearly report to grantors.”

David Duffield is co-founder and chairman of Workday Inc., a financial management and human capital management software vendor. He also found PeopleSoft Inc., which provided human resource management systems and was later sold.

County commissioners also accepted a grant from his foundation in August 2020 to place two additional sheriff’s deputies in Incline Village for the next 3 years.

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