DERRY | Councilors cut the police budget by about $37,000 last night, reducing the overtime budget and denying the department's requests to purchase a new backup vehicle and replace furniture.

The cuts brought the police budget from just over $8 million to $7.9 million.

That final number could be even lower once the department figures out how much it will save with the upcoming retirements of three police officers, something not calculated into the budget presented last night.

Councilor Kevin Coyle led the charge for reducing the police budget at last night's workshop, the first of four sessions during which councilors will review every department's budget.

He made a motion to reduce the detail budget by $20,000 that failed 4-3 with Coyle, Janet Fairbanks and Brent Carney supporting it. A second motion made by Brian Chirichiello to reduce the budget by about $8,000 was approved unanimously.

The biggest cut was a request for a vehicle to be used as a backup if a cruiser broke down. Everyone but Chirichiello supported a motion made by Coyle not to purchase the car, which would have cost about $27,000.

The town's proposed budget is $36.8 million, but it does not include possible salary increases for the town's seven unions because contract negotiations continue.

If increases in salaries are negotiated for union members, cuts will have to be made in either town services or personnel to get the budget under the 3.2 percent tax cap.

If union contracts negotiated involve salary increases, Chief Edward Garone said there would have to be cuts in personnel.

"You would have to lay people off to get that kind of money," Garone said.

This Week's Circulars

Recommended for you