After 27 years in law enforcement, former Post Falls city councilman Joe Bodman believes he is well groomed to serve as Kootenai County sheriff.
Running as an Independent candidate, Bodman would pump change into county law enforcement, he said.
"That department has been run the same for the last, well, since 1989," said Bodman, who served 13 years with the county Sheriff's Department before leaving to join the Spokane County Sheriff's Department. "It's time for someone who's going to look outside the box."
Bodman would target wasteful spending he believes is happening in the department, he said. The 54-year-old is confident he could run the office under a conservative budget, he added.
"The Post Falls city council position gave me experience in managing departments and department heads and in looking at budgets," he said of his 12 years on the council.
Dubious of the private-funding idea proposed for a new jail, Bodman said he would take a different approach to the facility's overcrowding.
The answer lies in convincing the legislature to amend laws so certain offenses no longer land people behind bars, he said.
Non-violent crimes could be better deterred by piling on fees, Bodman said.
"You've got guys sitting in jail who are driving while suspended, who have DUIs," he said. "What better way to get these people than in the pocketbook?"
Bodman could also reduce department turnover, he said, which he attributes to wage levels and struggling morale.
Bodman has an associate's degree in law enforcement after attending Spokane Community College and North Idaho College. The Post Falls resident has been a field training officer for 14 years. He has accumulated 4,000 training hours, he said.
Bodman has been married 25 years and has three children.
He hopes voters will look past party affiliation when choosing their sheriff, he said, explaining his Independent status as weariness with party infighting.
"The sheriff is a person who protects all citizens of Kootenai County, not just Republicans, not just Democrats," Bodman said.