Public to vote again on abolishing East Syracuse Police Department

Voters in East Syracuse will once again have to decide the fate of the East Syracuse Police Department.

The debate over whether to create a

shared-services agreement

with the DeWitt Police Department will come to an end with a referendum vote on April 2.

The shared services plan will keep East Syracuse's five full-time police officers on the force, but will not transfer over any part-time officers.

The agreement would take effect at midnight on January 1, 2015, and the shared-services agreement would immediately be implemented.

The move would save taxpayers an estimated $164 on a home assessed at $100,000.

Most residents at Monday night's board meeting were opposed to the consolidation.

"If we ever went with the Town of DeWitt, we would be hurting," said resident Lucy Anne Forkhamer. "We really would be hurting."

"We feel safe because when you call, they're there," said Patricia Bacon, concerned about losing the officers she already knows well. "They know us. Drive by your house or see them in your car, they wave to you."

One neighbor, however, would rather see the merger than a higher tax bill. "I hope the people vote for it," said Lisa Somers. "I can't do another 22% tax hike. I can't afford it. So I think this is the way to go."

A similar consolidation referendum between the two police forces was voted down in October 2012.