Madison's New Police Hire on Hold

Governing body concerned about the affordability of the budgeted position after reviewing projections for next year, the council president said.

Madison's governing body is deferring a decision on hiring a new police officer because of concerns about being able to afford the position next year, the Borough Council president said Monday.

Council President Jeannie Tsukamoto said officials, after reviewing projected 2013 financial information provided by the chief financial officer, were concerned about the affordability of the position in 2013.

As a result, they deferred a decision to a later day and will work with the on shared service and partnership opportunities to reduce underage drinking and drug and alcohol acitivity in town, Tsukamoto, the council's public safety liaison, said during the council meeting.

The additional police position was included in the 2012 budget and, about a week before , Trevena—with the involvement of Borough Administrator Ray Codey and Assistant Borough Administrator Jim Burnet—, Tsukamoto had said.

Trevena's departure brings the number of officers to 26. The department had 35 officers in 2008. Since then, the number of officers was reduced through attrition and four civilian dispatchers were hired to handle dispatching work previously done by officers.

In March, Tsukamoto said funding for the new officer .

Jake Remaly August 16, 2012 at 03:07 PM
To be clear, while it was the council president who was giving an update where the process stands with the governing body, it wasn't a decision that the council president could make on her own. She has stated what she sees as the merits of adding an officer, but also says officials need to make the position work with the 2013 budget. I don't have specifics beyond that at this point. I'm not sure where the other elected officials stand on this, or what budget numbers they're looking at, but wanted to add that in case the clarification helps.
BeardedMike August 17, 2012 at 11:52 AM
J: according to schooldigger.com, compared to other schools are rankings have declined between 03 (when I moved here with my family) and '11' the last year for which we have data. Statewide ranking: 2003 was 31st, 2011 was 66th. Total in ranked high schools : 2003 was #351, 2011 was # 381. State of NJ %: 2003 was 91%, 2011 was 83%. There was some up and down in that time, but we are trending down. Meanwhile, the budget is slowly trending up, as are my taxes. More $ for less police and fire personel and schools that are slipping compared to other communities? Great.
ghost August 17, 2012 at 04:50 PM
I hate to beat a dead horse, but something stated in this article does not make sense to me. The council is placing the new hire on hold, but will "work with the Madison Police Department on shared service and partnership opportunities to reduce underage drinking and drug and alcohol acitivity in town,..." So in essence, the mayor and council want to pay another town to form a task force in OUR town with OUR tax dollars instead of hiring an officer that was already budgeted for. Instead of paying more money to use another town for a task force, why wouldn't you keep the money in Madison, hire our own officers and have our own task force back in place? Wouldn't that benefit the town more because we'd have Madison guys out there who know the town inside and out and who probably care more about our town than an outsider would? Is it even legal to hire other police officers from other towns to work in Madison? Like I said, our mayor and town council are placing the entire town in jeopardy under the guise of saving the town money. I expect public safety to be the number one priority in Madison! We pay a lot of money in taxes and should not have officers from different towns coming when we call for help because we don't have enough officers and our mayor and town council have blown our tax dollars on trivial projects that we don't need!
Lisa Ellis August 17, 2012 at 05:33 PM
Absolutely shocking and there are several young men from Madison in the video. It takes almost nothing these days to film something like this...ten minutes and an IPhone. I disagree with the assertion that our schools are slipping. I checked out schooldigger.com (whose rankings are based solely on state testing results) and we are ranked #56 overall out of 559 which puts us in roughly the top 10% statewide and New Jersey Schools are ranked only below Massachusetts nationwide. Also, Madison High School was ranked #276 in Newsweek’s recent list of America’s Best High Schools 2012. Our students continue to succeed at a very high level and go on to an impressive list of the best universities in the country. We continue to look to improve student achievement in spite of serious funding losses over the last few years. Our property taxes will continue to climb until Trenton seriously addresses the inequities associated with how we fund our public schools.
Patrick Franklin August 17, 2012 at 06:52 PM
The only shocking thing about this video is that random white kid not feeling the music at all. Where's the alcohol consumption? Bill wrote this up as if it was a full scale rap video, when in fact it's a group of kids with a camcorder (or cell phone) who probably wrapped in 10 mins.


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