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BREAKING NEWS

Blue Earth police chief is retiring

By Staff | May 2, 2011

BE Police Chief Dean Vereide

After almost 33 years in law enforcement – 12 as Blue Earth’s chief of police – Dean Vereide has decided it’s time to try something new.

The chief tendered a notice of intent to retire to City Administrator Kathy Bailey on Thursday, April 21.

His last day on the job will be June 30.

“He is giving us two months notice, which is nice,” Bailey says. “Of course, the City Council will have to officially accept the resignation at their meeting on Monday night.”

Then, Bailey says, the council will have to go about the business of deciding how to replace Vereide.

“I know in the past the council has discussed not having a police force and contracting with the county,” she says. “I expect that could be discussed again at this time.”

Vereide says he qualifies for retirement in June and has decided to take advantage of it.

“Law enforcement is a young man’s game,” he says. “And I am not a young man anymore.”

The chief says the police retirement program is set up for officers to take advantage of at age 55.

“There is a reason for that,” Vereide explains. “They know how hard it is to do this work after you become older.”

The chief says there are several reasons why he has decided to retire at this time, but did not wish to discuss them all.

“I guess if I get to the point where I don’t have to put up with the aggravation of the job and can retire, I owe it to myself and my family to do so,” he explains.

Vereide admits he is too young to actually “retire retire.”

“I will relax for a while,” he notes. “But then I plan to still work a part time or a full time job – just not in law enforcement. I sure don’t plan on just sitting around the house all day long.”

Plus, he adds, he doesn’t have enough hobbies to occupy all his time.

Vereide is an Elmore native and started his law enforcement career there on Aug. 1, 1978.

“Actually, I did several jobs for the city,” he says. “I worked for the Elmore Police Department for a year and a half.”

Then he made the move to Blue Earth and started with the city on March 4, 1980 as a full time police officer.

“I took over as interim police chief in October of 1998,” he says. “They made me official chief in January of 1999.”

The chief says that when he started in law enforcement 33 years ago, he decided then that he would retire from it when the opportunity became available.

“I wanted to retire on my terms,” he says. “I have been lucky to have my entire career in law enforcement here.”