Burr Oak dissolves police deparment

Officials from the village of Burr Oak have agreed to dissolve the community’s police department and contract protection through the St. Joseph County Sheriff ’s Department.
During a special meeting Wednesday, village council members went into closed session, where they met with chief Cynthia Miller. After the closed session, a motion was made to accept the sheriff department’s contract and, separately, offer Miller one-year of unemployment benefits.
The five-year agreement calls for the sheriff’s department to provide police protection to the village for $75,500 a year. The annual cost for the village to maintain a department is more than $85,000 annually.
Trustee Tabbatha Hines, who serves as the police department representative, said the village will no longer be charged for officers during the annual summer festival, and the sheriff’s department will pay for equipment.
Council members said they won’t see the savings until the second year of the agreement.
Until the contract begins June 1, the department will be covering the village, undersheriff Mark Lillywhite said.

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