Valdosta Daily Times

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March 19, 2009

'State of the Sheriff's Office' by Lanier County Sheriff Nick Norton

To all Lanier County Residents,

Your Lanier County Sheriff’s Office is continuing to provide what is best for all the citizens of Lanier County while making Lanier County as attractive as possible for those that are considering relocating here. As your Sheriff and the elected Chief Law Enforcement Officer of Lanier County, I believe having a modern, effective and well trained Sheriff’s Office staff is vital features of that attraction and a necessity for both new and existing residents while serving all residents of Lanier County and Lakeland, GA.

The “out of the box” thinking encouraged and implemented at LCSO has really paid off these past few years. Simple changes in creativity and our approach to providing law enforcement, utilizing available technologies and better hiring practices has made huge and very noticeable differences. Your Lanier County Sheriff’s Office has even become the “buzz” most anywhere you go throughout Georgia and spoken about in a very positive and supportive way! Working together and closely with all surrounding Sheriff’s Offices, Drug Task Forces, state and federal agencies, while meeting regularly to discuss options and ideas has thrust the Lanier County Sheriff’s Office years ahead of where we’ve been.

Currently your Lanier County Sheriff’s Office is producing 29% of its budget; injecting over $159,000 from drug seizures; supplying over $250,000 from grants; and paying for vehicles and supplies from aggressive patrolling efforts. We are currently operating 21% below the national average for an agency similar in size and 15% below the state average. And although we are understaffed by state and national averages, we still perform all the required duties of the office by serving all court papers.

Since being in office, Lanier County Sheriff’s Office has seized over 4 million dollars worth of currency and drugs, not to mention the other assets that are awaiting closure from both state and federal court systems and filings that include vehicles, and equipment. Even our investigations recovery and solve ratio runs higher than the national average at 52%.

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