Shared Police Agreements Stay on the Table

By Erika Mahoney

October 2, 2012 Updated Oct 3, 2012 at 10:39 AM EDT

Johnson City, NY (WBNG Binghamton) It's at least one more year for the shared police chief and assistant chief agreements between Johnson City and Binghamton.

After a month of anticipation on the decision, the Johnson City Village Board shared the news with residents at Tuesday's board meeting.

Some of the driving factors for keeping the agreement on the table were experience of the current police leadership and cost savings.

"There are some cost savings in there," said Johnson City Mayor Greg Deemie. "We are trying to figure out what exactly those cost savings are. As everybody knows, we've been going back and forth on all of this for the last month, so we are still trying to get a hard number on that."

Longtime Johnson City resident Shirley Krno said she is happy with her board's decision for exactly that reason.

"I think it's a very good thing for the village," said Krno. "It's going to save us money in the long run."

Deemie also said they will be paying close attention to how the long-standing agreement plays out over the 2013 year.

"We are working on known issues, known problems, we are working this out. Binghamton has said "yes," they are willing to work with us."

Work, he said, on better communication and accountability between the shared forces.

While not everyone on the board agreed with the decision, they acknowledged that moving forward with positive change is key.

"I think it's important that as we move forward, that we do work with our officers that are in our department now," said King. "And if they need additional training so that at some point they could move up to be captain, assistant chief, those positions, then we need to give them the training."

All in a possibility Johnson City might have their own, separate force in years to come.