Troy plans to add community officers

Kumi Tucker
Updated: May 04, 2021 08:13 PM
Created: May 04, 2021 08:01 PM

TROY -  Plans to hire six more police officers in Troy came out of task force meetings on policing and police reform.   

"I’ve heard loud and clear that residents in our community, residents in our neighborhoods, businesses in the downtown to Lansingburgh, to South Troy and the Eastside, they want to see our police officers out on the beat more," said City Council President Carmella Mantello.  

She says it's especially important in light of recent gun violence and other crime. 

The measure has bipartisan support. 

Mantello says hiring six officers will allow for Troy to have two community police officers in each of the city's four zones.  She says the officers would be dedicated to outreach, building relationships, and good old-fashioned "park, walk, and talk."  Police say the city has three community officers now. 

"Due to being conservative during COVID with our budgeting, and due to our restoration of state aid, which was huge this year, we have worked together on a budgetary item to hire six new officers," said Mantello.  

Some activists spoke out against the plan at a virtual town hall meeting Sunday, but Mantello believes adding community police officers will help the city overall. 

"I get it, right now, our police force, the morale is not where it should be," she said.  "There are folks who obviously see this as oh, just more cops with guns. That’s not what this is about."

"This is about building bridges, improving communication, building relationships on the ground level in our neighborhoods," she continued. "I know other communities are looking at defunding and taking money away from the police budget. This is not about just putting more police on the force. This is about community policing efforts and really building bridges with our community and building that trust hat is desperately needed in some of the neighborhoods." 
The council is expected to vote on Thursday. 

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