One discussion at this year’s budget talks at Carlisle Borough Council echoes a question asked a year ago.
Should the borough hire two police officers to return the complement of officers to 33, the number of officers that had been employed by the borough prior to two positions being eliminated a few years ago?
The borough is expected to discuss hiring the officers at its workshop meeting at 6 p.m. Dec. 5.
“I think it’s safer and it’s reasonable. If we have the funds to do it without raising taxes, it’s a no-brainer,” said Councilwoman Robin Guido.
Carlisle Borough’s proposed 2018 budget does not raise real estate taxes but it does increase water and sewer rates as well as the cost of tra…
Councilman Sean Shultz suggested the borough find out what it would cost to do a study on what the appropriate number of police would be for the borough before increasing the department’s ranks.
Guido took issue with the suggestion, noting that the request for additional officers was made a year ago.
Shultz countered that he had requested the same data then, but had not received the requested information. The borough is not at a stage at which it could make a fully informed decision, he said, adding that a study could determine the borough needs more than two additional officers to have full staffing.
“We owe it to the public to make an informed decision on that,” he said.
“By my thinking, we don’t have enough people,” Chief Taro Landis said.
During last year’s discussion, Landis reminded the borough that he had told them there were not enough police officers on its police force.
Landis said he’s realizes it would be a burden to increase the number of officers and that he could go with one new officer early in the year with the other to follow later.
“I’m looking at what you have on the street, what services we can provide and trying to be a 21st century department,” he said.
It takes about $100,000 to bring a new officer on board including salary, benefits and equipment
Borough Manager Matt Candland said the officers could be hired without raising taxes or dipping into the borough’s reserves.