Owego, NY (WBNG Binghamton) While many can take comfort in knowing local police patrol their hometowns, residents in the Village of Owego no longer can.
The village will be without overnight local police throughout the month of September.
For this month, calls for service from 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. will be covered by the New York State Police and the Tioga County Sheriffs Office.
This is all due in part to a staffing shortage that resulted when the village board voted to not hire two candidates for the department in mid-August.
This left three budgeted but unfilled positions at the station.
In addition to the three vacancies, one officer is currently on administrative leave and one officer is attending the Police Academy.
"All departments are important but when people have a problem, a legal or political problem, they want police activity," said Mayor of the Village of Owego Kevin Millar. "They want police on the scene. Now I'm not saying that the sheriff or the state's wouldn't respond. It really depends on who is where at the time a call comes in."
Millar said he does not agree with the decision made by the village board to cut the number of officers.
He went on to say he believes that the department should have eight or nine full time officers. Currently, they only have five.