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Galt adding two police officers to force, despite failed measure

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Posted: Wednesday, January 12, 2005 10:00 pm

The first tangible result of the Galt City Council adding two police officer positions to the city budget surfaced Tuesday, when Brian Nino served his first shift for the Galt Police Department.

Brian Nino

Nino's hiring comes in the aftermath of community demand for more police officers to combat crime in Galt. The City Council added two positions to the budget that took effect last July.

An additional two more officers may have been hired had Galt voters approved Measure S in November. It would have increased the sales tax by one-quarter percent to 8 percent.

The ballot measure didn't spell out how the revenue from sales tax increase would be used, but the City Council promised to apply the money to hire two additional police officers.

It took six months to hire the first of two officers allocated in the new city budget due to the extensive hiring process, which includes mental, physical and psychological tests and a background check, said Galt police Lt. Ken Erickson.

The department is still looking to fill two full-time officer positions -- the second allocated in this year's budget and a current vacant one -- plus a part-time position, Erickson said.

Nino's first day was on graveyard shift Tuesday.

Born in San Jose, he attended Foothill Community College in Los Altos Hills. He graduated from the Ray Simon Criminal Justice Training Center at Modesto Junior College and was an asset manager for SaveMart Stores.

Law enforcement has been a longtime goal for Nino, whose uncle and cousin were in law enforcement and he was a childhood neighbor of the San Jose police chief.

He said his first night on the job, beginning at 10 p.m. Tuesday, was slow enough to get acclimated into his new job.

"It was a bit of a slow night, but we had a couple of home burglaries with two arrests," Nino said.

Galt's small size at about 23,000 population will provide a nice atmosphere to raise his 7-year-old daughter and 10-month-old son.

Nino, 28, currently lives in Stockton with his wife, Carrie, and his children.

Contact reporter Ross Farrow at rossf@lodinews.com.

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