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Police Reform Ideas Discussed

The Town of Kirkland Board met Sept. 30 to discuss new business.

The meeting began with the presentation of the preliminary 2021 Town of Kirkland budget. Town Supervisor Bob Meelan gave an overview of the preliminary budget's expected cuts, saying losses in expected revenue are leading to a tax increase of 47 cents per $1,000.

Notable revenue losses are $83,000 in State Aid, $20,000 in Mortgage Tax, a $50,000 appropriation for the Town Garage, $35,000 in Health Insurance, and a $76,000 cut to the Town of Kirkland Police Budget. A $200,000 loss in sales tax revenue and a substantial reduction in the New York State CHIPS fund are also expected.

"This was an awful year to have to budget," Meelan said. "The lack of known revenues really made this a challenge for us. I want to let people know the projected revenues are there just so we can break even."

Workshops for the public to discuss concerns with the Board will be Oct. 14 and Oct. 28. The expected date of the budget's adoption is Nov. 9.

The Board approved the resolution for lease purchasing agreements for two Town of Kirkland Police Department Vehicles and one Front-End Loader for the Highway Department.

The Board approved a resolution authorizing budget transfers. Transfers of $9,000 to the Unallocated Insurance Fund, $12,000 to the Garage fund, $8,300 in unused labor to the Contingency Fund, $15,000 in unused hospitalization to General Repairs, and $5,000 from Road Work to the Contingency Fund were approved by the Board.

A public discussion on the state mandated Reforms of Police Policy was opened. Members of the community were given a chance to express their support and concerns on the new plans.

Administrative Officer Shawn Occhipinti said the order from Gov. Cuomo for a completed reform policy is due in April.

As of Sept. 29, Town of Kirkland Police completed training on…

The full story is in this week's edition of the newspaper. 

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