Weather Forecast


Hubbard County's new chief deputy chosen from Park Rapids Police Department

Park Rapids Police Chief Terry Eilers, center, presents letters of commendation to officers Scott Parks, Carrie Parks, Craig Kritzeck and Michael Mercil at the Park Rapids City Council meeting Jan. 12. The city council also commended Eilers for the leadership he demonstrated during the incident. (Anna Erickson / Enterprise)

Hubbard County Sheriff-elect Cory Aukes has tapped Park Rapids police officer Scott Parks to be his new chief deputy when he takes office in January.

That was one of two moves Aukes made Thursday.

He also said the department will pursue grants for the state radio system called ARMER that Sheriff Frank Homer had rejected.

Most of the counties in Minnesota are going with ARMER except a bloc of counties in the northwest section of the state. All state agencies will be using the Allied Radio Matrix for Emergency Response.

"It's inevitable" that the system will be used statewide eventually, Aukes said in explaining his reasoning.

All state agencies have already converted to the radio system. A change to narrowband radio systems has been mandated to be operational by 2013.

Hubbard County will be unique in that it will be a "dual band" radio system, Emergency Manager Brian Halbasch said.

It will upgrade its VHF digital communications to enable it to communicate with both Becker and Beltrami counties, which have already invested in the digital conversion.

By patching that system together with the 800 MHz ARMER, deputies and emergency dispatchers will be able to render mutual aid to neighboring counties using other radio systems.

The county board has previously said it will rely on the sheriff to choose the radio system to be implemented.

Park Rapids Police Chief Terry Eilers wished Parks well, then joked, "For every one of my guys he (Aukes) takes, I'll take two of his."

Sarah Smith

Sarah Smith is the outdoors editor. She covers courts, business and breaking news in addition to outdoors events.

(218) 732-3364