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Monday afternoon, Governor Kay Ivey appointed Nick Welden DeKalb County Sheriff two weeks early. Ivey sent Welden a letter stating former Sheriff Jimmy Harris vacated two weeks early and Welden will start as Sheriff on January 1, 2019.
"It is 14 days earlier than we had planned. We had a lot of things we had not prepared for yet and had to make a few decisions," said Sheriff Nick Welden.
WAAY 31 reached out to Harris and he said he put in his retirement letter, but was still surprised by the news.
"State retirement says you have to retire on January 1st, but the county commission says we're not going to have a sheriff until the 15th and we'll compensate you for that," said Jimmy Harris.
Harris told WAAY 31 because of health concerns with his back, he decided not to run for re-election. He's worked with the DeKalb County Sheriff's Office for 30 years.
Sheriff Welden said he and his new administration have been at the sheriff's office cleaning up and having meetings on issues all day Monday.
"Our main thing is we lobbied to take on more drug task force agents. That's always a need everywhere, especially in DeKalb County. We made those changes with the proper people in those positions," Welden said.
Harris said though he assumed, he and his administration had two weeks to clean their offices, he still wanted to talk with Sheriff Welden about important issues.
"There's a lot that goes on down there and I'd like to have had the opportunity to give him a going away to let him know what was going on down there where he would know that," Harris said.
Brad Gregg has also been named Chief Deputy. He replaced Michael Edmonson, who also ran against Nick Welden for sheriff.
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