Growing Movement To Disband Police Departments
The city of Pewaukee, Wisconsin voted to do the same towards the end of 2009. As of the new year, the department was eliminated. Police protection is now handled by the Waukesha country sheriff’s department where the majority of the old officers now work. Of course, the union is suing to reverse the vote of the people.
Please consider Waukesha Sheriff Takes Over in Pewaukee
The sign at the city hall building still reads the City of Pewaukee Police department but Friday there was a new sheriff in town…quite literally.
“11 pm on December 31st Waukesha County took over,” said Lt. Neil Dussault with the Waukesha County Sheriff’s Department. But Dussault says if you weren’t paying attention in Pewaukee, you may not have known about the take over.
The squad cars, at least for now, still read Pewaukee Police, but driving them are deputies dressed in their brown uniforms with new Pewaukee arm patches.
The city voted in November to close the police department and then contract with the Waukesha County Sheriff’s Department. Officials claim it will save the city around $1 million. 26 officers lost their jobs with Waukesha County hiring 16 of them.
The union filed a lawsuit to reverse the takeover and union attorney Jim Palmer believes there is a real chance a judge could rule in the union’s favor in the coming months. “We wouldn’t be doing this if there wasn’t a real chance,” said Palmer.
Either way, the Waukesha County Sheriff’s Department says it is working hard to change the people’s minds.
“Detectives and officers will be meeting with businesses depending on service calls to see what their needs are, if they want anything special,” said Dussault.
This got me wondering where else is this happening?
In growing voter anger over rising taxes and high union costs, numerous small towns are voting to disband their city police departments and contract with the sheriffs department instead.
Jan 09, 2008 Gaston South Carolina
If you called the Gaston Police Department Wednesday you heard a strange message. “Yeah, this is Chief Crider Gaston Police Department. Do not leave any messages. As of right now council has disbanded the police department. We are laid off until further notice. Do not leave a message. They won’t be checked for the next couple of weeks. Thank you, it’s been fun working here. Bye.”
The entire force shut down because Gaston doesn’t have the money to pay the officers.
The town is now under investigation by the State Law Enforcement Division, the IRS and the State Ethics Commission for its financial problems, including some big spending by employees.
Michael Gantt says, “I own four businesses in this community. If something happens now we’re going to have to rely on the Sheriff’s Department. We do have a fantastic one in Lexington County; however, they’re spread thin like anybody else.”
October 7, 2009 Mora City Minnesota: Kanabec County Times: City council votes to disband P.D.
The Mora City Council ended months of debate and discussion by voting 3-2 Tuesday afternoon to disband the city’s police department and contract with the Kanabec County Sheriff’s Office for administration of law enforcement services.
Mora Mayor Greg Ardner, Councilwoman Beth Hallin and Councilman Dave Chmiel voted in favor of the move. Preliminary time lines have the sheriff taking over law enforcement inside the City of Mora effective Jan. 1, 2010.
“I value people’s opinions, but I see this strictly as a fiscal matter,” Hallin, who offered the official motion to disband the city’s police force, said.
While some of the first-year savings would be negated by severance and unemployment obligations, the city’s most recent estimates indicate Mora would save approximately $170,000 annually by contracting with the sheriff for comparable law enforcement services
December 04, 2009 Waukegan Illinois
The Waukegan Police Department’s four horses are being put out to pasture in an attempt to save money as other north suburban police departments also scramble for ways to cut costs, officials say.
“The economic downturn has affected a lot of police agencies,” said Waukegan Police Chief Artis Yancey. “We’re looking at how to become more efficient.”
For some departments everything is on the table, officials say.
Discontinuing the mounted patrol in Waukegan has been particularly painful, officials said. The program started five years ago and costs the city about $35,000 a year to operate.
The four horses – Bob, Billy, Freedom and Justice – will be sold to another law-enforcement agency or to a private owner, Yancey said.
Waukegan middle school students and members of the Police Department held fundraisers to try to keep the mounted division operating. They raised about $10,600, but it wasn’t enough, said Deputy Chief Wayne Walles.
Nov 16, 2009 Highwood Illinois
What if your town decided to stop using its police force to handle emergencies, and hire other officers to do the job?
The Lake County Sheriff’s Department is scheduled to present its price tag for offering police services to the residents of Highwood at Tuesday night’s city council meeting.
Highwood City Manager Gregory Jackson says residents should keep an open mind. He said keeping 12 full-time officers on staff costs roughly $1.3 million per year, and the city is just looking for ways to save.
The article quoted many residents against the idea. There has to be some support for it or the council would not be debating it. Meanwhile, do the math. 12 full time officers cost $1.3 million per year. That is $108,000 per job. I bet they could contract the work out, increase the number of officers while paying less.
September 15, 2009 Minneapolis Minnesota
The Minneapolis Police Department responded this week to a projected $5 million budget deficit by disbanding its narcotics unit, making Minneapolis the only major U.S. city without one, according to the unit’s former leader.
However, Chief Tim Dolan said Tuesday that the department still has sufficient resources to handle drug cases. The unit, which had 14 officers when it was shut down Monday, looked into nearly 4,000 cases this year, including many dealing with mid- and high-level drug dealers, said Lt. Marie Przynski, who was in charge of the unit.
Minneapolis is now the only major city whose police department lacks a narcotics unit, she said. While Dolan complimented the unit’s work, he quickly ticked off a list of how the department will continue to investigate drug cases.
The department needs to lose 50 positions next year to reduce the deficit, Dolan said.
Want to keep the officers? All the union has to do is vote to lower salaries and benefits. It’s that simple.
Jun 1, 2009 Roanoke Illinois
The village of Roanoke is without a police department. At the village’s board meeting Monday night it was disbanded to switch to coverage by the Woodford County Sheriff’s department.
Nearly 100 residents showed up to the meeting where the debate was heated and personal. In a five to one vote board trustees dissolved the police department even though they don’t have a formal contract with the Woodford County Sheriff’s department to patrol yet.
Those who supported the move say it will save the village nearly $50,000. They also say it has nothing to do with the Police Chief Mike Brockway who is on paid leave since being arrested, but not charged, after a report of domestic violence at his home last week.
“I am in the same predicament as everyone else, but the fact of the matter is, we have a $30,000 to $40,000 dollar deficit that not one person have come up with a solution to fix, unless it is paying more taxes,” said Roanoke Village Trustee Steve Aeschleman.
“They’re not thinking of the needs the of the citizens, the citizens I made promises to, the good people of the community who really need the support of a police department,” said Roanoke Police Chief Mike Brockway. “I don’t think they have taken their needs into consideration at all.”
Good riddance to former police Chief Mike Brockway. The clown makes promises to the people that require taxes to go up, then bitches when people feel the other way. Once again, if these union clowns knew what was good for them they would have lowered salaries or benefits. Instead they get what they deserve, to be thrown out on their asses.
November 24, 2007 Kilbuck Pennsylvania
The Kilbuck Township supervisors voted 2-1 Tuesday evening to disband their police department and instead rely on patrols from the Pennsylvania State Police.
“I opposed it on the timing,” Russell Hardiman, who opposed the decision, said yesterday. “I thought more notice could have been given.”
Mr. Hardiman said that he could not comment further, “because the matter with the union is not resolved.”
Kilbuck has a population of just over 700, according to the Penn State Data Center. While it is a relatively small community, its now ex-police force had an outsized reputation among motorists using Ohio River Boulevard because of the force’s zealous enforcement of speeding laws.
Read that last sentence carefully. Good riddance to Kilbuck police who had nothing better to do than setup speed traps to pay their overbloated and unjustified salaries.
Feb 26, 2008 Lewisville Texas
A local police department is doing away with its motorcycle patrol and the death of a Dallas motorcycle officer, last week, apparently played a role in the decision.
Lewisville police officer Peter Gardner says he’s going to miss the sound of his motorcycle. It’s something he’s become use to hearing for more than six years.
In the last six years motorcycle related accidents have cost the City of Lewisville $40,000.
Last Friday, after DPD Officer Lozada was killed in a crash while escorting presidential hopeful Hillary Rodham Clinton, the Lewisville police chief decided to end their motorcycle program.
The Lewisville motorcycle patrol officers will be allowed to take one last ride – when they attend the funeral service for Officer Lozada. “It’s gonna be a somber day,” Gardner explained. “Because we’re basically laying two things to rest – Officer Lozada and our program.”
Seems like it’s high time for that unit to ride off into the sunset. Last year the Flower Mound Police Department disbanded their motorcycle program because of safety and cost.
November 13, 2008 East Tawas Michigan
Thursday there was talk of disbanding a Mid-Michigan police department after two of its officers were accused of getting into a bar fight.
There have been discussions before in the Tawas Area of doing away with the local police department — which has six officers — and this latest investigation might prompt some action.
The two Tawas Police Authority officers were off duty when the scuffle happened, but one woman has been injured and the case is now at the state attorney general’s office.
“Off-duty police officers were in the bar socializing,” said East Tawas Michigan State Police Lt. Robert Lesneski.
Police say one of the officers involved is the son of Tawas Police Chief Dennis Frank.
Frank’s son and the other officer are on paid administrative leave. The investigation has some in the area wondering if the Tawas Area needs a police department.
“It’s been an ongoing thing with the budgets,” said East Tawas City Manager Ron Leslie.
February 21, 2009 Lacey Washington
The Lacey Police Department has disbanded its Special Response Team, or SRT — the department’s equivalent of a SWAT team.
Lacey Police Guild Vice President Ken Kollmann said Police Chief Dusty Pierpoint told him of the decision to disband the SRT on Wednesday. Ten Lacey police officers served on the team, Kollmann said.
Kollmann said the police guild feels the status of the SRT should have been subject to labor negotiations and called Pierpoint’s decision “arbitrary.”
In an e-mail to The Olympian, Kollmann added, “a possible Unfair Labor Practice complaint may be filed against the City/Department as a result of this.”
In response to Kollman, I suggest Lacey outsource the whole operation to state shariff’s associations. It is preposterous for the disbanding of a special unit be subject to labor negotiations. If Kollman want to negotiate, he should negotiate with the sheriff’s department for a job.
May 01, 2008 Mandeville Louisiana
Takeover of Mandeville Police Department discussed by mayor, sheriff
Mandeville police officers, already reeling from a scandal involving a charitable fund controlled by Chief Tom Buell, are fearing for their future after learning that Mayor Eddie Price has been considering a possible takeover of the department by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office.
Buell used money from the toy fund, known officially as the Mandeville Police Citizen Service Fund, to buy gift cards for police department and city hall employees.
Price said Thursday that he began exploring the idea of disbanding the Mandeville Police Department, which has about 50 employees, and having the city of 12,000 patrolled by sheriff’s deputies because of the potential cost savings.
After meeting with Sheriff Jack Strain several weeks ago, he said he concluded that hiring the Sheriff’s Office would not be much cheaper than the city’s current $5 million annual police budget.
Check this out: “Buell defended the prevalence of police officers and city staff on the gift card lists, saying many are single parents or have large families. He admitted that paying for the mayor’s gifts using the fund was a mistake but said he did so to spare his officers the financial pain of pitching in.”
The mayor who makes $96,000 a year received $1,300 in gift cards and a hunting bow. The money was supposed to go to a toy fund for needy kids. Sgt. David Greenwood president of the Fraternal Order of Police called the timing of the investigation “suspicious”.
And that is one huge problem of unions. In general they will defend their members no matter what they did. David Greenwood is a fool.
December 3, 2009 Stillwater New Jersey
There were tears and quiet complaints from a defeated crowd of police supporters Thursday night, as a special meeting of the Stillwater Township Committee ended with a unanimous vote to disband the municipality’s local police force in favor of coverage by the New Jersey State Police.
“I want to thank all of you for coming out,” Stillwater Township Police Chief Anthony Kozlowski said to the crowd of around 100 people before the committee’s vote.
Under current state guidelines for rural communities, the Stillwater committee does not expect to pay for New Jersey State Police coverage. Ehrenburg’s report had estimated a total operating cost for the Stillwater Police Department in 2010 would be more than $482,000
“Can you put a price on safety? I guess you can,” said Mayor William Morrison, who explained that due to budgetary confinements and a strict tax levy cap imposed by the state government, the township could no longer afford to operate a local force in the current economy.
December 10, 2009 Paint Borough Pennsylvania
Paint Borough Council, while saying it will miss its dedicated police force, voted to disband its part-time department at year’s end for budgetary reasons and agreed to contract with neighboring Paint Township for full-time police coverage.
Also during the meeting, council adopted a 2010 budget of $242,450 that is balanced and retains current taxes for the fourth consecutive year. The three-year police contract with Paint Township will cost $31,500 annually with an option to renew.
It cost Paint Borough $55,650 to run its police department this year.
It came down to a budget crunch. The borough was unable to afford its police department without raising taxes a good bit, he said.
It cost 43% less to outsource the police department for full-time coverage than the city had paid for part-time coverage.
Small town police departments everywhere ought to dump their police departments. Indeed there is no real reason that large towns cannot do the same.
Mike “Mish” Shedlock