EATON COUNTY, Mich. (WLNS) – Staffing issues have hit a new critical mass at the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office.

Sheriff Thomas Reich has arranged for Michigan State Police troopers to help with public safety coverage during the early morning hours in the out-county area.

Reich said that’s not something he ever wanted to do, but he currently has no choice.

Staffing shortages caused by retirements and deputies leaving the ESCO for departments with higher wages is the reason for the request for MSP’s help, Reich said,

“My office wants to provide 24-hour coverage, we just currently don’t have the personnel to accomplish this,” Reich said on social media.

The issue has been a hot topic lately.

United States Representative Elissa Slotkin visited the sheriff’s office last week to discuss the retainment issues they’re currently dealing with.

Although Slotkin pitched some possible solutions, for the time being they sheriff’s office will not be able to offer 24-hour service, Reich said.

“It is with great regret that I have had to make this decision. Let me assure you that once our wages are comparable to that of area agencies, which would make recruitment and retention more attractive to potential candidates, this will hopefully bring us back to staffing levels to resume 24-hour service,” Reich continued.

Reich concluded by saying the department is hiring. Anyone looking for employment can contact Capt. Kuhlman, Administrative Services, at 517-543-6384 or email him at Ckuhlman@eatoncounty.org.