FORT EDWARD, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The Fort Edward Village Board is looking into the police department being dissolved.
“It’s kind of a shock in a lot of ways, but these small towns, they got their problems. Finances, taxes going up and whatnot,” says John Weber, owner Ye Old Fort Diner.
Weber continued, “There’s really no reason to get rid of them, but in the same breath we’re a community of 3500 what can we, what can we afford?”
Since January, the small police department in Fort Edward has been under the direction of an acting chief. The previous chief, Justin Derway, resigned in July after he pleaded guilty to falsifying information.
The village would not be without law enforcement. Instead, policing would be taken over by the Washington County Sheriff’s Department. A move that would save villagers $200,000 a year, according to the Post-Star newspaper.
That savings appealed to some residents.
“I am a resident of the village of Fort Edward, and I think it’s a great idea and I’m excited to see what happens and where that money can go,” said a resident.
“I think it’s a good thing myself I think for whatever really needs that to move forward,” says another resident.
Other residents thought, in addition to money being saved, the switch would not compromise safety.
“I think it’ll be a lot safer to tell you the truth. I think they’re a little more trained probably and the more experience probably so I would say so,” said a resident
After officials held a meeting to discuss changes this week, owners of the Ye Old Fort Diner and Slickfin Brewing Company telling NEWS10 they are optimistic for the future.
“I think we got a lot of good people down here. Politics don’t play into it. Everybody’s trying to do what’s right,” says Weber.
“I’m a big police supporter, and you know, if obviously one door closes and know that the Village Police is gone, I’m sure they’ll pick up the slack,” says Kris March, Slickfin Brewing Company, LLC owner/brewer.
The public will have a chance to give more input at a future meeting. No timeline has been set on voting for any changes.