Washoe County Sheriff Candidates Discuss Priorities, Experience - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Washoe County Sheriff Candidates Discuss Priorities, Experience

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Either Tim Kuzanek or Chuck Allen will be Washoe County's next Sheriff, come November. Both candidates have more than two decades of public service, and both have their own visions for the Sheriff's Office, if elected. Allen has leadership roles in the military and the Nevada Highway Patrol. Kuzanek is second in command at the Washoe County Sheriff's Office.

The two had a chance to convince voters why they are the best candidate, during a debate at the Republican Women of Reno Luncheon on Thursday. They fielded questions regarding their experience in law enforcement, to how they would handle situations like the riots in Ferguson, Missouri.

"We will not allow people to loot, pillage and rape, here in Washoe County, under any circumstances," Kuzanek said. "No matter what the triggering event was."

"Before it escalates to that level, having the dialogue, having the trust, having the respect of the community does go a long way in curtailing some of those actions," Allen said.

Both candidates say they have the leadership qualities necessary to lead 753 employees at WCSO, while engaging with the community.

"Creating more partnerships, maintaining other relationships with other public safety entities," Allen said. "And why do that? It's to build trust in the community."

"Keeping my finger on the pulse of the community," Kuzanek said. "What community concerns are around. How we can keep the crime rate low, in our area, given the resources that we have through Washoe County."

Kuzanek says crime in Washoe County is at a 10-year low, and plans to crack down on drug trafficking and gang activity, among other things.

"Enhance the DNA crime laboratory," Kuzanek said. "I think that's the wave of the future. I think it's an important element to crime-fighting for us. It's a great tool and that's where I would start."

Allen says he would like to revitalize the reserve deputy program, enlisting 60 men and women on a volunteer basis.

"And wear a badge and uniform, carry a gun and see the public," Allen said. "I can save the community hundreds of thousands of dollars and respond to more calls for service."

The Washoe County Sheriff's Office has a budget of $95 million. Part of that is for the county jail, that houses about a thousand inmates. Eight more deputies are being hired this year.

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