Today, the Prince William County Board of Supervisors unanimously cut  8 more officers from the police department budget.  That makes a total of 8 officers and 12 support staff in the past 2 years.  In addition, a million dollars has been removed from their supplies budget.  This would have covered  training, radar, and other equipment.  Another half million dollar cut is looming on the horizon.  The cut became effective today.

There have been no new police officers added in the past 3 years.  Supervisor Nohe asked if they were really cutting police officers.  The answer is yes.  Even though there were 8 vacancies, there are still 8 fewer uniformed officers out defending public safety today than there were yesterday because these positions were abolished and cannot be filled. 

Perhaps one of the most devastating areas to be cut  is in the schools.  Starting 2011, there will be no police officers in middle schools.  The school police officer program  has been a highly successful one which cut down on neighborhood crime, bullying, gang membership and other annoyances that seem to plague kids of middle school age.  These officers knew the kids, the teachers, the administrators, the bus drivers, and many of the parents and had a good working relationship with all of the above.  They were able to ward of f potential problems.  After this year, the schools will just have to call and get whoever responds.

There are still 6 officers who are authorized to process 287(g) related matters.  These officers in the Criminal Alien Unit only work on issues dealing with illegal immigration and continue to  be funded. 

Prince William residents are going to have to decide how important public safety is to them.  Most folks don’t give it much thought until something happens and they need a police officer, on the double.  The wait time might be getting a lot longer as retiring officers are no longer replaced.  This might be the time to start asking how much more of a loss can we take. 

Reading the paper, it seems that PWC is plagued by more crime that is associated with inner city crime.  Any time something large happens, many officers are tied up on the scene and cannot respond to other calls.  When officers work a large crime scene, that means they aren’t out in your neighborhood or mine.  Are we willing, as a county, to let this happen?  Or should we start howling and demand that PWC begin to budget for these losses from the state.  A few pennies added to our tax rate might make a great deal of difference in public safety in Prince William County.

54 Thoughts to “PWBOCS Cuts 8 More PWC Police Officers”

  1. @marinm
    Oh I see what you meant about the cop standing over the kid in a meeting. No, that’s not the image I intended to paint. I do know the cops have to get involved when there is a complaint about bullying or suspected violence, but to what extent, I couldn’t say. I just know that the trouble making kids get a talking to from the school cop. If that scares a kid straight, then I say, like you, go for it.

  2. Police officers have clout in schools that no one else has. This is not a bad thing.

    What really pisses me off is that the county prioritizes the criminal alien unit over officers in schools preventing gang issues. This is so penny wise and pound foolish.

    Anyone who thinks that a school resource officer isn’t worth his weight in gold has really never been behind the scenes in a middle school.

    Prince William County has also been fortunate enough to be able to hire retired officers as their security people. Again, those people are worth their weight in gold, even if they no longer had police powers. the knowledge they brought to the job was incredible.

  3. Is this the internal auditor that Corey fought to get? How many are there? It sounds like we need to start taking a closer look at some of these things.

    I wonder which supervisor would be the one to approach. I have been disappointed with many of them. By the time 4 of them voted to turn down stimulus money without even checking into what the deal was and how overcrowded classrooms were…i sort of gave up. It was an election ploy, not stepping up to the plate for better governance.

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