Candidate campaign visits won’t break the bank for Metro - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Candidate campaign visits won’t break the bank for Metro

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With the presidential election campaign officially under way and Nevada being a swing state, you can expect frequent visits by President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney in the coming weeks and months.  

These types of campaign stops can cost cities hundreds of thousands of dollars, but that won't happen here this year, said Metro's Sgt. John Sheahan.

"Our officers get no overtime for working these details and there are no consequences financially to the taxpayer," Sheahan said.

Cities including Las Vegas have billed the White House for security costs in the past, but those bills were never paid, Sheahan said. With Metro currently operating with 355 fewer officers than during the last presidential race and being cash strapped, the department has come up with a way to do more with less.

"We are re-allocating resources of officers that are on duty and bringing them in to work these protection details," Sheahan said. "Once their part of the security detail ends the officer returns to normal duty."

What may become the bigger inconvenience is the traffic jams the motorcades create during such visits.

"Just with the traffic coming in and off the freeway when they stop, everything stops," said Toni Cervantes, who got caught on the 215 during a presidential visit earlier this year

The president will be in Las Vegas Wednesday.

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