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Public hearing on possible elimination of Pulaski Police Department

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CNY/NNY/S. Tier: Public hearing on possible elimination of Pulaski Police Department
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Pulaski residents head to the polls next month to decide the fate of their police department, but first they'll have the opportunity to learn more about what eliminating the department could mean at a public hearing Tuesday. Sarah Blazonis has details.

PULASKI, N.Y. -- The possibility of closing Pulaski's police department is something village officials began considering last year. It's a move that could save the village more than $100,000, but the police chief is encouraging people to come out to tonight's meeting to get all the information they can before voting for or against the move.

Police Chief Ellery Terpening says right now, the village is patrolled by one full-time and eight part-time officers. He says Oswego County Sheriff and State Police patrols would take over if his department is eliminated.

The village could save about $200,000 of its just more than $2 million budget from the move, but Terpening worries about what it would do to safety in the village.

"The bad guy, if you will, sees us out on patrol, which I think deters crime. A lot of times, police respond to a crime after it's been committed, but I think, with our presence in the village and our patrolling tactics that we have, it deters a large amount of the crime that could be committed in the village of Pulaski," said Chief Terpening.

People who live in Pulaski are encouraged to come out to Tuesday's meeting to learn more and ask any questions they might have. It's going to be held at 7 PM at the Snow Memorial Village Office on Jefferson St.

We reached out to Pulaski's mayor and members of the village board. Trustee Sharon Taplin said she was against the move, citing public safety concerns, but other officials declined to comment.

Chief Terpening says that vote on whether to abolish or keep the Pulaski Police Department is scheduled for March 19.

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