County Suspends Ads For Sheriff's Department Until After Election

Las Cruces – Dona Ana County Sheriff Todd Garrison has suspended radio advertisements promoting the Dona Ana County Sheriff's Department until Nov. 3, 2010, the day after the General Elections.

"Although the advertising campaign is reflective of an ongoing and dynamic effort to rebrand the Dona Ana County Sheriff's Department to the community, I am sensitive to the fact that we are in an election cycle," Garrison said. "With that in mind, I have informed the internal committee that commissioned the campaign of my decision to suspend it."

The advertising campaign is part of a $50,000 community outreach effort that began in 2007. Using seized-assets funds - not taxpayer dollars - a Dona Ana County Sheriff's Department committee chaired by Lt. Chris Smead issued a request for proposals in 2008 for services to raise awareness of the Dona Ana County Sheriff's Department. A Las Cruces firm, Wilson-Binkley Advertising, was the winning bidder and has coordinated production and placement of radio ads promoting the department's mission statement and core beliefs.

In addition to the radio advertisements, the department's rebranding initiative includes redesigned patrol cars, new letterhead, motivational posters and banners for recruiting and job fairs. Once the campaign resumes, billboards eventually will be incorporated.

"This entire initiative is reflective of the officers' desire to show their professionalism and pride to the communities we collectively serve," Smead said. "I respect Sheriff Garrison's decision to suspend the campaign, but the entire department looks forward to its resumption in November, regardless of the election results. We believe the message is important, and we want to keep it going strong."