SUNBURY, NORTHUMBERLAND COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Change is coming to a community in central Pennsylvania that benefits everyone in the community. The building that the Sunbury Police calls home is in need of some tender care and love.
“It’s very old. The equipment is starting to become antiquated which inhibits our ability to effectively and efficiently do our jobs to best serve the public,” officer Terry Ketchem said.
“When the police station moved to Market Street, it’s been close to 20 years now. The plan was never to stay there so a lot of renovations got held off,” Sunbury councilman Chris Reis said.
Which is why this past Monday night, city council decided to look for funding to move the police department into an old warehouse building on Chestnut Street.
“The architects Strauser and Bare did the plans and floorplans and it really will be just kind of building the interior spaces to need,” city administrator Jody Ocker said.
As you can see, the inside of the current police building is deteriorating. Officer Ketchem says it makes it difficult to keep the city safe.
“Housing prisoners that we have to take into custody, separating suspects and victims, things along those lines. Report writing, and just being in such a long, spread-out space, things are all over the building whereas the new building, everything is centralized,” Ketchem said.
The project will cost a little more than $1 million to renovate the new building. Council is exploring multiple avenues to start the funding process right away.
“It’s a big figure, still, we can’t you know, go ‘oh wow it’s only a million dollars.’ That’s a lot of money that we’re going to have to come up with, but we think it’s reasonable for what we’re going to get,” Ocker said.
“Give the police department, which is reemerging, they’re rebuilding. Give them an opportunity to start fresh in a new space,” Reis said.
Once all of the funding is secured, the goal is to get things moving on the new building by the end of the year.