I-Team: The Debate over Regional Police Forces

 LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) Is bigger better when it comes to police departments?

     It's a question that was asked in a special i-team report  that aired on eyewitness news at 11 last night..  The story  generated a lot of response  And today our lead I-Team Reporter Andy Mehalshick talked to some local  officials.

Our report raised questions about whether regional police departments are the future of police protection. The basic consensus was that regional forces are more efficient, and provide better police protection.  On Wednesday,  we heard from officials who say there's got to be some way  to mandate their formation..in the interest of public safety..

John Bonita is the business manager for Pittston Township. He was a key player in a three year long effort  to form a regional police force in the Pittston area....



"We did resolve a lot of the issues that had to be resolved and we were so close to pulling it off and it just tumbled. When it did everybody was a little dissappointed."


The new regional police force would have included the communities of Pittston Township, Jenkins Township and Dupont., .Dupont pulled out...Officials  there saying it was not in the best interest of its residents to be a member of the new police department...



"Until municipalities agree to the division of power the division of everything else it just won't happen."  Said Bonita


And that is not the way it should be..so says State Senator John Yudichak.. He blames politics  as the major reason that all too many of these efforts to organize regional police  departments fail. He says municipal officials can't blame it on lack of funds.. State money is available to kick start the effort..


"There is a regional police grant, shared municipal services grant, LSA grant that tried to incentivize that in greater Pittston. Where they already had secured some funding. But these efforts always fall short here in Luzerne County." Said Senator Yudichak.

Trending Stories

Latest News

Video Center