The relationship between our public safety agencies is paramount, and we need to consider who is best suited to be the leader of our Sheriff’s department. Sheriff Bill Brown has a long and distinguished 40-year public safety career. He is a fine man with a good family. However, Brown has lost the support of his own rank and file, at least two of the county supervisors who will regulate the Sheriff’s Office budget, our county’s firefighters, many more.

As a former 12-year elected sheriff and three-year appointed county fire chief, I learned that there comes a time when change is good and necessary. I believe for the Sheriff’s Office, that time is now.

Lieutenant Brian Olmstead is the best choice to lead the department going forward. A highly experienced law enforcement professional, Olmstead is smart, well educated, and will surround himself with the best available men and women to accomplish the variety of challenges they face every day.

Olmstead has received the support of the Deputy Sheriffs’ Association, County Firefighters Local 2046, and Santa Maria Peace Officers’ Association. These are the men and women who are the first line of contact and support during the challenges we all face on a daily basis. They know who they trust to lead them into the future, and they ask for your support now. They and I ask that you vote for Lt. Brian Olmstead for sheriff on June 5.

Jim Thomas was S.B. County Sheriff 1990-2002 and County Fire Chief 1993-1996.


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