MADISON, OH -Officers will continue patrolling the streets in one Northeast Ohio community. A plan to eliminate the Madison Village police department has been voted down.
Dozens of residents showed up at Monday night’s council meeting…most demanded that the village keep its police department.
The meeting was held away from the village hall at the Lakeland Community College Madison campus to accommodate the larger than normal crowd.
The meeting was supposed to be the second of three readings of the proposal, but council members decided to take a vote Monday night.
“One of the things that thrills me about living in Madison Village is I have sense of security here, I feel protected,” said one resident.
“Heaven forbid, we have an active shooter in our town, I want that young lady (police chief) to bust through the door,” another resident said as others applauded.
“How many grandkids can go down the street and say ‘I know that police officer, I saw them on the street?’ I want to keep that, so if it means putting it on the levy, then let’s do it,” said another resident.
The village council heard most residents speak out against the proposal to dissolve the 22 member Madison Village police force. It would save more than $650,000.
The proposal would have contracted with Madison Township officers to patrol the village, with one full-time officer assigned to the village per shift.
“This concept of contracting for services is not something that this council or this mayor had invented today or last month or last year…there are four proposals in the last nine years,” said city councilman Ken Takacs.
Officials say they have enough money to fund the police department through the rest of the year. In the meantime, they will look for other ways to find police funding in the future.
The Madison Village Patrolman’s Association issued a statement saying they are pleased with the vote. “We are eager to put this ordeal behind us and continue our service to the Madison Village residents,” the statement read, in part.