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Police agency denies block of Foley's private security police force

The executive director of the police standards board charged with blocking an effort to hire private security to replace county sheriffs deputies says the claims are "fiction." A Foley city official confirms that the agency contacted the proposed security outfit but did not take action.
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The executive director of the police standards board charged with blocking an effort to hire private security to replace county sheriffs deputies says the claims are "fiction." A Foley city official confirms that the agency contacted the proposed security outfit but did not take action.

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Police standards panel blocks Foley's plans to hire private security police force

The Peace Officers Standards Training Board rejected the city of Foley's plan to hire private security guards to replace county sheriffs deputies. Foley's attempts to switch to private security would make it the first city in the state to ditch public law enforcement services. The city says it's a cost-saving move.

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The city voted to sign a contract with a private security company after failing to reach a new contract with Benton County. Foley has been contracting with the county to provide law enforcement since the city cut its own police staff in 2003. Foley is the first city in Minnesota to hire a private police force.

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Last month, the central Minnesota city dropped their contract with the Benton County sheriff's office in order to save money. But Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson raised concern about possible legal ramifications of relying on private security.

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The Foley city council voted to end their contract with the Benton County Sheriff's Department to save money. They'll pay nearly half as much to a private security company instead to safeguard the city.

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The central Minnesota city previously contracted with the Benton County sheriff's office but switched in a cost-cutting move -- making it the first in the state to hire a private security company to patrol its streets.

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