Event organizers could pay for police overtime Submitted: 11/01/2013
Story By Shardaa Gray

RHINELANDER - Big events like Hodag Country Fest need police there.

But when police need to work longer hours, they get paid overtime.

It costs taxpayers more.

The Oneida County Board is talking about whether that's right.

Supervisor Jerry Shidell thinks event organizers should reimburse the officers.

The board is putting together an ordinance to make that happen.

If it passes, the county's lawyer says they have to be very careful with the details.

"My office is looking into some legal ramifications on that and how do you make an ordinance that everybody is charged fairly so that people are actually paying for what is required," said Oneida County Corporation Counsel, Brian Desmond.

"We have to be real careful when we're doing that. As we talked earlier about making sure everyone is treated equally."

Rhinelander's Chamber of Commerce's executive director was at the public safety committee meeting Wednesday.

She says she's not against it or for the ordinance.

But she does want the board to be aware that many big events would be affected.

"At this point I think it's just something that it's very important to make sure we know where it's going and what the impact might be for all of our members, all of the organizations in Oneida County as a whole," Rhinelander Chamber of Commerce executive director, Laura Reed said.

"So it's just one of those things out there to make sure that we're staying on top of it."

It's not likely the board will vote on the proposed ordinance until next year.

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