by Jonathan Weaver
Local residents will see a lot more Manor Township police patrols next year if finances remain steady.
During last night’s budget workshop, officials budgeted police to patrol the municipality up to 500 hours per month – up from the approximately 400 the past few months.
It was all part of the plan, Police Sergeant Terry Bish said.
“Public safety – the township needs to be patrolled more,” Sergeant Bish said. “We need to be out there more. Like we’ve said in the past, (the township) is growing.”
With those extra hours in the department’s six-figure annual budget, Sergeant Bish and Police Corporal Eric Petrosky will also apply for a federal Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) grant through the U.S. Department of Justice.
According to the grant parameters, funding would be provided for most of a full time officer’s salary during the course of three years. Township supervisors did not decide yesterday to hire any new officers, but are taking resumes after Corporal Petrosky and Supervisor Don Palmer motioned to add up to four new officers – including the township’s first female.
“We didn’t set a number for how many we’re going to hire. We might hire none, we might hire one, we might hire five, but we’re going to add more and those extra hours are going to be for the patrol,” Sergeant Bish said. “We want to put the (officers) on the street.
“Our schedule next year with that extra 100 hours will completely change. The (officers) will be out nights more, weekends more – it’s going to vary.”
Sergeant Bish said the department has not applied for the grant before.
Supervisors praised police officials for their efforts and willingness to interact with the community.
Police officers have already received a $500 community donation.