‘He will leave us some very big shoes to fill’, Peoria County officials react to Sheriff Asbell not seeking re-election

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PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) – Peoria County officials are reacting to the announcement that Sheriff Brian Asbell will not run for re-election.

After serving as Peoria County sheriff since 2017, Tuesday, Sheriff Brian Asbell announced he plans to leave his post at the end of his term.

“I will not be running for re-election,” said Asbell during a Peoria County Meeting on Tuesday.

Asbell told Peoria County board members the reason for his decision are grievances he has with the county.

“After 27 years of serving this county, some of the policy decisions from this board here recently has changed my mindset about my future,” Asbell said.

Asbell didn’t go into specifics, but in May of last year, the sheriff expressed concerns with planned budget cuts to his office.

Without going into detail, Peoria County administrator Scott Sorrel confirmed pending grievances.

“We do have a couple of outstanding grievances with some of the collective bargaining units that are teams members in the sheriff’s office,” Sorrel said.

Sorrel said Asbell’s announcement came as a surprise but expressed appreciation for his time in the position.

“Sheriff Asbell has had a very honorable and distinctive career with Peoria County the last 27 years and before that proudly served in the U.S. military, and myself and the board thank him for his service,” Sorrel said.

17th District County Board member Jennifer Groves Allison shared a similar message of appreciation.

“We were very disheartened to hear that. He will leave us some very big shoes to fill. He’s been a very good asset to the county, and a very hard one to replace,” Groves Allison said.

We have reached out to Asbell, but he said he won’t be speaking on the matter. Asbell’s term expires in December 2022 and Sorrel said an election will determine his successor.

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