Friday, June 5, 2020

SUBSCRIPTIONS

Moab, UT

73.8 F
Moab
More

    Edge ‘always knew’ he wanted a career in Moab

    Featured Stories

    Ignoring own standards and experts, Utah commission pushes reopening

    The COVID-19 model from the CDC predicts an increase in deaths from the coronavirus from Utah in the coming weeks, and key indicators predict more hospitalizations are to come.

    Leaving Guatemala

    I selected “send me where I’m needed most,” my desire to immerse myself in another country’s culture not affixed to any location in particular.

    Widespread testing is key to Moab’s path forward

    Once a person develops symptoms of COVID-19, it has likely already been days since they started unknowingly spreading the virus. As such, local health officials want to expand testing locally for the coronavirus.

    County to diversify post-virus

    The impacts of the pandemic have renewed local leaders’ focus on a topic many have worried over for years but must now confront in much starker terms: Economic diversification.

    Arches, Canyonlands to reopen May 29

    Arches and Canyonlands national parks will partially reopen to the public at the end of the month, according to a spokesperson for the parks, following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state and local public health authorities.

    The party is over at Imagination Station art supply store

    Cindy Sue Hunter serves a customer at her art supply store, Imagination Station, which has been reconfigured to allow shoppers to do what Hunter calls “door shopping."
    Carter Pape
    Carter Papehttp://moabtimes.awebstudio.com/author/carter-pape/
    Reporter Carter Pape covers news out of the Grand County Council Chambers, including housing, tourism, crime, and more.

    Q&A with Moab’s next police chief

    Moab Police Chief Jim Winder speaks his praise for Assistant Police Chief Bret Edge as Mayor Emily Niehaus looks on during a city council meeting April 23. Photo by Carter Pape

    Bret Edge has been a stock broker, a photographer and is now Moab’s chief of police. Edge moved to Moab and began training to become a police officer 13 years ago, and since that time, he feels he has connected deeply with the community and settled down here.

    Edge told The Times-Independent during an interview Tuesday, the day after the city announced he would be the new police chief, that he had no interest in leaving Moab. He said that he gets a deep feeling of satisfaction from working here that he wouldn’t get working in a larger city.

    We talked to Edge about what attracted him to Moab, what he’s found to be the biggest public safety threat to Moabites, and his desire to create more “positive contact” with members of the community. The full interview is available in audio form. Here’s an excerpted version of that interview:


    The T-I: You were promoted to assistant police chief in 2018. Was it on your mind at that point that you could become the chief of police?

    Edge: I always knew that my entire career was going to be with Moab. I don’t have a desire to go be a cop in a big city. It’s a different type of work and different environment. I’m really tied into the Moab community. We love it here. I knew that this was where I was going to spend my career.

    When Jim came in, we sat down and had a conversation—as he did with everybody in the department—where he asked what my mid- and long-term goals were. I told him that my mid-term goal was to become assistant police chief, and long term, I wanted to have his job.

    Here we are, so maybe police chief was more of a mid-term goal.

    What is the biggest threat to public safety in Moab?

    I’m not sure that ‘threat’ is the right word. Maybe “challenge.” This is probably true of most public safety agencies; it’s going to be staffing. It’s really difficult to recruit and maintain good-quality employees. All of the surrounding states pay better than Utah does and have better retirement benefits. It’s difficult for agencies to hire and keep people.

    Obviously, it makes it hard for you to do your job when you don’t have the resources you need. The city has been phenomenal with giving us pay increases and doing everything they can do on their side to help us recruit and maintain a really good staff, but there’s only so much the city can do. The state has control over retirement and other things.

    You mentioned that this line of work gives you a deep feeling of satisfaction. What is it about police work that gives you that feeling?

    I’ll give you an example. Just yesterday, we had a call where someone had pulled out of Sweet Cravings, and the bikes on the back of their vehicle had fallen off. One of the employees of Sweet Cravings went out, grabbed the bikes and brought them out of the road and into the store so that they would be safe, then they called us.

    I was getting ready to do the report and book it into lost and found when the owners came running up. They were like, “Oh my God, you found them! We thought they were stolen!” I worked with them to fix the bike rack and get it back in the hitch for them, and they live in Los Angeles, and at the end, she said, “This is weird because, in L.A., a cop would never do this. You would be on your own.” I told them that I was born and raised in L.A. for a time, and there’s a reason I’m not a cop in L.A. I like to do this type of police work, and we have the time to be able to deliver that type of service to people.

    It’s satisfying knowing you’re helping people. It’s not always a rack that came out of a car. Years ago, an officer who has since moved up north delivered a baby in a trailer at 2 in the morning. You get to do things that you wouldn’t get to do in any other job.

    Share this!

    - Advertisement -

    Latest News

    Against local officials’ request, gov. allows Moab lodgings to fully reopen

    Grand County asked to keep hotel capacities limited. The state overruled local elected and health officials, instead further lifting restrictions on the county.

    City cuts jobs to bridge huge tax loss

    These steps are in addition to cuts made March 13 when 60 part-time employees were terminated.

    Youth spots fire, alerts authorities

    "They (firefighters) figured out where the fire was coming from … it started with a cigarette.”

    Broken bones in Left Hand

    All but one of the injuries involved jumping from rocks into a shallow pool at the base of a waterfall.

    Employment data confirms Grand is among worst hit in state

    The figures confirm earlier estimates that roughly one in five to one in six jobs in Grand County have been lost to COVID-19.