Cell phone change for Nogales city workers - Tucson News Now

Cell phone change for Nogales city workers

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NOGALES, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

The Nogales city council will vote again next month to change its vehicle-use policy.

There was a vote earlier this month. But concerns by the police and fire departments, brought a rewording change.

The vote took place on the first Wednesday of this month. Mayor and council made an amendment to the vehicle use policy.

The vote was that city workers could not use cell phones or mobile devices while driving a city vehicle. If an employee needed to use one of those devices, that person would have to pull over to the side of the road. This rule was put in place affective immediately.

"It started that way and the majority vote of the council agreed that yes that would be something we need to do," said Nogales Mayor Arturo Garino.

The rule was for all city workers, including police and fire. Which use cell phones and mobile devices as part of their job.

That raised a red flag with Nogales Police Chief Derek Arnson. He was concerned that his more than 80 officers wouldn't be able to do their job with the new ban.

"You think about a police officers car is really their office, that's their office so they have the radio, their electronic devices, there emergency lights and sirens," said Arnson.

After a meeting between the mayor, city manager, city attorney and the police chief. The group decided to change the wording of the ban.

"There's going to be new language that's going to be placed in there by our city attorney and basically it's just going to be on phone use, but there's going to be language on hands free devices," said Mayor Garino.

So city workers will be able to use a cell phone. however, they will have to use a hands free device. The change will also allow police to use their laptops, radios and cell phones. If it's a personal call, the police chief has asked his officer to pull over.

Mayor and council will vote on the wording change next month.

Until then, the city manage has the power to change the rules for the fire and police department. Both of those departments will be able to use their devices.

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