Saturday, April 22, 2000

Hearings today on police unit

Deerfield may form own force

BY Kevin Aldridge
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        DEERFIELD TWP. — Two public hearings are scheduled today on whether the township should start its own police department.

        The first will be 9 a.m. at Deerfield Township Park on Irwin Simpson Road; the second will be at 2 p.m. at the township administration building on Townsley Road.

        Deerfield Township Fire Chief William Kramer and Jim Campbell, an Indianapolis police consultant, will answer questions and present data from a recent feasibility study. It examines four alternatives the township could pursue for police services:

        • Maintaining the current contract with the Warren County sheriff. • Improving the relationship with the county sheriff by strengthening communications.

        • Forming a township police department while maintaining limited services from the sheriff's office.

        • Forming a township police department while relying on the sheriff only for services such as record-keeping and a jail.

        “We are looking forward to the hearings and listening to what the residents have to offer,” Chief Kramer said.

        Deerfield Township pays $926,000 a year for 16 deputies under a contract with the sheriff. The cost is paid through a police levy that residents have been renewing since the late 1970s. It generates about $1.2 million a year.

        “The township has no control over sheriff's department personnel assigned to our community, nor do we control laws that impact law enforcement,” said Township Administrator Hazel Dotson. “The trustees felt that it was appropriate ... to also determine if it would cost our taxpayers less by having our own police department.”


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