City officials are awaiting word on a $430,000 contract to provide security services for the 30 Soviet inspectors monitoring shipments from Hercules Aerospace in western Salt Lake County.
The federal contract with Salt Lake police to guard the inspectors runs out at the end of March. And West Jordan officials are unsure when paperwork will be done so additional officers can be hired to guard the Soviets."It's still in committee back in Washington," said Lt. Ken McGuire, with the West Jordan Police Department. "As far as we know, we're still in negotiation."
West Jordan is negotiating with the On-Site Inspection Agency, the group overseeing the inspectors who are stationed at Hercules to ensure conditions of the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces treaty are met.
"We're probably planning on running it on an overtime basis until" the contract is awarded, McGuire said. "Whatever they want us to do, we'll be more than happy to cooperate with them. Maybe with luck (construction) won't get done before we do."
The inspectors now live at Sun Arbor Apartments on west North Temple and are preparing to move into apartments in West Jordan. Construction is on schedule and should be completed by March 24.
West Jordan planned to hire 11 new officers to assist the 30 patrolmen now on the rolls. Pairs of officers will guard the inspectors' residence 24 hours a day.
"And we're getting a little nervous because it's getting close," said West Jordan City Manager Ron Olson. "We haven't hired those officers until we get a firm contract. And if the federal government isn't in a hurry, we aren't."
Even if the contract with West Jordan is not secured by the end of the month, the Soviets "won't be out on the street," said Mary Wilson, OSIA spokeswoman. "They can extend their lease" at the west-side apartment complex.