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Hodapp set for second term as Beltrami County sheriff

Beltrami County Sheriff Phil Hodapp took Wednesday off to spend time with his family and collect political signs. Hodapp is helped by his father, Phil Hodapp Sr., a retired State Patrol trooper. Pioneer Photo/Monte Draper

Voters have given Beltrami County Sheriff Phil Hodapp the opportunity to work on public safety for four more years.

Hodapp won re-election with 8,762 votes - 55 percent - to his opponent Bill Cross' 6,987 votes - 44 percent. There were 20 write-in votes.

Hodapp said he plans in his next term to finish some projects already started and begin some new ventures. These would include special squad car technology purchased with grant money.

A study in 2007 showed that deputies spent about 29 percent of their time either traveling to and from the office to file reports, and actually writing the reports.

He said computers have been ordered for deputies to use in the cars for silent dispatch, GPS, mapping and accessing records, as well as writing reports.

"Our goal, with doing that, we're going to be able to capitalize on some of that lost time," Hodapp said. "That will give us a piece of that time for patrolling or additional work out in the field."

He said he will also continue concentrating on making the roads safe. Beltrami County went from the 13th deadliest accident county when Hodapp took office in 2006 to the 22nd deadliest.

"That's still not that good," he said. "We want to continue to address those problems, along with keeping our neighborhoods safe and dealing with our gang and drug problems."

The precincts in the southern part of Beltrami County generally favored Hodapp, while some of the more rural northern precincts gave a majority to Cross.

The most significant skewing was the four Red Lake Nation precincts, which each gave Cross a huge majority.

The vote in Red Lake was 342 - 83 percent - for Cross, and 70 - 17 percent for Hodapp. In Redby, the difference was 285 - 83 percent - for Cross, and 57 - 17 percent for Hodapp. In Ponemah, the vote split 225 - 91 percent - for Cross, and 23 - 9 percent - for Hodapp. And in Little Rock, 182 votes - 89 percent - went for Cross, and 21 - 10 percent - were for Hodapp.

Hodapp's opponent was not available for comment Wednesday.