Montville votes down proposal for independent police force

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MONTVILLE -- A referendum on whether to create an independent police department in Montville has been voted down.

In a 1531-949 vote neighbors decided not to establish an independent department and to continue the resident state trooper program. Town officials say this is the third time neighbors have tried to pass a referendum vote on establishing an independent department.

The issue was an attractive prospect for the town which currently has a police department, but it's run under the supervision of the resident state trooper. A vote passing the referendum would have dissolved the trooper position while creating a chief position in the department as well as bringing in more dispatchers and equipment.

"Things have changed since 2002 in fact we didn't have Montville commons we didn't have all the economic development that we had on 32," said Joseph Jaskiewicz, Montville Town Council chairman. "We want an independent police department, we want to go on our own and be progressive we gotta move forward now."

But the divisive, and ultimately deciding factor was the cost to the town, estimated at hundreds of thousands of dollars.

"I'd like to have the independent police force, I really would, but I didn't vote for it because I don't think the town can afford it right now," said Mary Furey, a resident of Oakdale. "I'm hoping we can in the very near future."