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October 24, 2012

Malone police force not guaranteed in dissolution

(Continued)

Council member Mary Scharf is also against the idea, at least initially.

“I’m in favor of creating a police district, and if that fails, then I’d favor a townwide police force,” she said, adding that Sen. Betty Little told her she would support state approval of a special policing district.

Scharf said village residents have made it clear they want police protection, and town residents don’t want to pay more, “so a district satisfies both feelings.”

She said businesses west of the village on Route 11 call Village Police for assistance but pay nothing toward the cost.

But that would change, Scharf said.

“If you’re in the district, you pay for the service. If you’re not in the district, you don’t,” she said.

Councilor Louise Taylor favors a townwide force, but “the problem is we didn’t have all the facts about how to go about doing it” when the dissolution study came out.

She said there are not concrete numbers on cost, which is the bottom line to her if it comes before the Town Council.

“We need a little more in terms of facts to go by, but it has worked in other villages,” Taylor said. “We’ll have to look at it both ways, but I want to see if there will be savings.

“I have great respect for the Village Police and the State Police, but the State Police have to patrol all the way across the border so we can’t totally rely on the State Police when Malone police can be somewhere in two minutes,” she said.

“I’m not against townwide police, but I think if we had more time, we would’ve been able to get more definite answers and get them in writing,” Taylor said.

Councilor Paul Walbridge wants to see if the state will grant a special district first, “but I don’t know if that would happen.

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