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Possible cuts to Frankfort Village Police Department

By LEXIE O'CONNOR

FRANKFORT, N.Y. (WKTV) - The Village of Frankfort could see cuts to it's police force to balance it's budget. A meeting will be held Thursday at 6:30 pm at the Village Hall on the issue.

The proposal is to cut two full time positions at the department, making them part time positions. Frankfort Village Police Chief Ronald Petrie says if this happens, he doesn't see the village being able to maintain their 24 hour 7 days a week service.

"Cutting two full time positions when I have three working full timers is a bit deep, that's a little bit too deep," said Chief Petrie. "It'd bring us back to the point of summer 2010 prior to me working here when they weren't able to cover 24/7."

Chief Petrie says while moving two full time officers to part time would allow the village to save on vacation, benefits, and about a 30 % reduction in pay, he feels the overtime costs to keep the 24 hour coverage would surpass any savings the board planned to make. Without that coverage, he anticipates complaints.

"The village residents need to have that expectation that if these cuts are made, they may not have a village police force 24 hours a day and would be relying on town police that do not have 24 hour coverage now," said Chief Petrie. "And you may be relying on the state police that would have an extended response time."

Chief Petrie says Governor Cuomo has outlined the village in a secondary response area for the state police, so they would not be first on the list if a call came in.

In addition to the inconvenience and safety risks it'd pose to the residents, the Chief says the prospect of cuts is also not helping him recruit or even keep officers.

"What it boils down to is anybody currently leaving this department they're leaving because of lack of stability," said Chief Petrie. "They have to find a job elsewhere because they don't feel comfortable staying here."

The chief says he has presented other options to the board, including him working on the streets, or even consolidating services with the town.

The meeting is open to the public, at 6:30 pm at Frankfort Village Hall.

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