Village, town of Cornwall discuss merging police

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Officials from the Village of Cornwall-on-Hudson and the Town of Cornwall met Tuesday night to discuss a possible merging of their police departments.

Decision makers from the village and the town discussed either consolidating the two departments or abolishing the smaller village department and having the town?s department take over.

A main reason for the discussion was saving money. However, residents worry that saving on costs would also mean skimping on protection.

?My understanding is that if the town takes over, there possibly wouldn?t be coverage all 24 hours,? village resident Tom Whalen says. ?So that would be a concern.?

Village Police Chief Charles Williams is also concerned. He says a merger could result in some officers ? including himself ? losing their jobs.

?The issue really is in not knowing our direction,? Williams says. ?I?m just reinforcing to our men and women here ? to continue doing the great job they do. All this will be worked out and ultimately, the public will decide.?

Residents say they need to know more information before they can make a decision. ?Does it actually save money and will they still be able to provide the same services, or will that diminish?? town resident Holly Borzacchiello says.

The Cornwall town supervisor says the Village Board came up with the idea of a merger. Tuesday?s meeting was just a first formal step in discussing the options.

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