Eagle police are seeking volunteers to help officers patrol more than six miles of the Greenbelt on either side of the Boise River.
The city had a volunteer patrol program in place in the past but got rid of it in 2008 due to budget cuts. The Police Department hired a new neighborhood contact officer this month, allowing them to reinstate the program.
“We’ve had a number of people contact the police department already because they’re interested in giving back to their community and giving back to the city of Eagle,” Police Chief Steve Bartlett said.
“If they’re volunteers, I mean why not?” Eagle resident Elizabeth Fletcher said. “It helps the community come closer together, and we should all help each other out anyways.”
Police want the area to stay a safe place for families and children to exercise and play. The idea seems to be a favorite among parents worried for the safety of young children.
“Any additional patrol or any additional supervision like that would be outstanding, because with young children […] I mean you could be talking to somebody and they run off and you’re like ‘wait a second’, you know? So I think it’d be great,” Kristi Alford said.
“Any time with little ones, especially by the river, it would definitely be something good to have extra eyes and ears around,” Fletcher said.
The volunteers will patrol on foot, bike and golf cart, equipped with radios and phones to contact police when necessary.
"We want to be able to provide [Greenbelt users] that assurance that we have staff out there; the volunteers will be working in conjunction with our officers on bike patrol,” Chief Bartlett said. “We hope to provide service if somebody is broke down with their bicycle, we have a missing child, or somebody just needs a ride back to their vehicle because they’re tuckered out from walking, we want to be able to do that for them.”
Volunteers will also be trained to help with basic first aid, directions and city information.
All volunteer applicants will go through a thourough background check including a polygraph test.
If you’re interested in volunteering you can submit your application to the Ada County Sheriff’s Office now. Patrolling is set to begin around the start of the new year.