PD to staff fewer cruisers, drive less often due to $400K budget cut

"The department recognizes that these changes will affect response times for certain calls," a Facebook post read

By Dave Eisenstadter

GREENFIELD, Mass. — Greenfield police took to Facebook on Wednesday to announce they would be driving fewer cruisers less often after $400,000 was cut from the department budget.

post from the department’s Facebook page announced that on 3 p.m. Wednesday, they would switch from “four single-officer cruisers to two double-officer cruisers.” The department will also reduce the amount officers will drive cruisers, limiting trips to the ones that are “that are absolutely necessary to our core mission as a police department.” Idling in vehicles will also be limited.

“We will continue to give the highest priority to life-threatening calls. The Department recognizes that these changes will affect response times for certain calls, our proactive approach to crime and traffic enforcement, and our visibility in the community,” the post read.

The post continued that the changes were designed to keep the officers safe while also addressing “financial and political realities” the department faces, including increasing fuel costs.

[RELATED: Pain at the pump: Another crisis for public safety]

Some councilors at the meeting last week had hoped the budget cut could eliminate the salaries of the police chief and other officers named in a discrimination lawsuit, in which a jury found that the department had discriminated against a former officer.

The lawsuit was brought by Patrick Buchanan, the former officer. According to the Greenfield Recorder, a jury found earlier this month that Buchanan was discriminated against when he was denied a promotion in 2020.

Many commenters on the post expressed sympathy with the department. In a comment, the department directed them to reach out to the Greenfield City Council.

©2022 Advance Local Media LLC. Visit masslive.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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