Delavan to hire two more officers in 2008
Officers are strapped for time, Police Chief Tim O’Neill said.
“We’re a lot of times just going from call to call,” he said.
Officers are spending more time investigating and processing cases than patrolling city streets, O’Neill said,
The officers will be hired in April, giving the department a total of 19 full-time officers, including the chief.
O’Neill said the state requires police departments to handle some types of cases a certain way. In domestic abuse cases, for example, police must uphold the state’s “mandatory arrest” law.
That means more time spent on each report of domestic violence, O’Neill said, and the volume of those reports is on the rise. The department investigates almost as many domestic abuse cases as the Walworth County Sheriff’s Department, he said.
The two officers additional officers will boost patrolling during evening and early-morning hours. They’ll also relieve the captain from some patrol duty, allowing him to take care of administrative work.
With the hiring of two officers comes all related expenses, including training, uniforms and upgrading a school-use vehicle to a patrol vehicle.
City Administrator Joe Salitros said by delaying the hiring of the two officers until April, the cost to the city is reduced. The city council cut other items out of the city budget to accommodate for the expenditure, including eliminating $35,000 that would have been spent on repairing the roof of a fire station.