Paul Barta eyes Blue Earth County Sheriff seat
MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) -With more than 20 years in law enforcement, Blue Earth County Sheriff’s Office Capt. Paul Barta is looking at becoming the next sheriff of Blue Earth County.
“I had two jobs before one being a dad and a husband and one is being the captain of the sheriff’s office and now I have thrown this third position or job onto it with the campaign,” Barta said.
Some of the issues that matter to Barta include transparency and accountability within the sheriff’s office. He says that being in the community and establishing public trust are some of his top priorities.
“Whenever you see public trust at its height you are going to see the effectiveness of government increase and recruitment and retention improve,” Barta said.
In addition to bringing in more officers especially to work in dispatch and the jail, the drug epidemic is a topic Barta knows voters care about this midterm election. Barta says law enforcement should focus more on cracking down on the dealers supplying drugs like fentanyl rather than the users. He adds officers should help those struggling with addiction.
“If we get those individuals in, we get them stabilized on medications that they would normally be taking off recreational drugs or drugs that they are addicted to and get them to a point of stabilization,” Barta said. “What else can we offer them in the jail program setting to increase the likelihood that when they are released from jail and walk out that door they have a less likelihood of coming back.”
When it comes to serving the community, Barta says he believes it starts with taking care of his entire staff at the sheriffs office. He wants to do this by creating a wellness plan for his employees.
“If we can give all of our staff the abilities, the tools, the opportunity to make sure that they are in as good of a place that they are in,” Barta said. “That we are managing any vicarious or direct trauma that they have experienced by virtue of their role with the sheriffs office. We are going to make sure that our staff is well taken care of and in a great place to operate at peak performance.”
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