SILVER CREEK - The Silver Creek Village Board will explore its police coverage options at a special meeting next week with representatives from the Chautauqua County Sheriff's Office.
The meeting will be held Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Hanover Town Hall. The purpose of the meeting is to hear a presentation by the sheriff's department on an alternative proposal for police coverage that could potentially replace the existing Silver Creek Police Department and reduce the cost to the village taxpayers, according to a release.
"Basically, we are looking at how we can cut costs to village taxpayers and give people the same coverage. There is no commitment by having this meeting, we are just going to hear a presentation to see other options," Mayor Nick Piccolo explained. "Right now we have a chief, one full-time officer still on probation and part-timers. We don't have a fully manned police department as it is. We just want to see if this option will benefit the village. If it doesn't we will have to look at different avenues."
Piccolo said although he enjoys the protection of the village police, he understands being on a tight budget.
"I like the security of having our own police department. But, now I am retired and living on a limited income like many others in the village. ... I think a lot of people realize luxuries have to come to an end some time," he said.
There will be an open question and answer session for village residents to ask any questions or address concerns to the sheriff about the proposal. Each resident will be given a three-minute time period for their question. All questions will be addressed directly to the Sheriff and/or his associate(s).
Residents will also have a brief opportunity to address the village board with any concerns that pertain to the presentation and the Silver Creek Village Police Department.
The village board encourages any and all residents to attend.
"We want people there so we can hear their input. We want to know if they are comfortable with what the sheriff is offering," Piccolo added.
He said anyone who cannot make it to the meeting can voice their concerns to him while he is in the office at the village hall all day on Tuesdays and Thursdays and most afternoons Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.