I have a solution to bring more money : lower the psl + increase fines ...proven strategies.
O divine art of subtlety and secrecy!
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Some of these money issues could be resolved relatively simply. If PSP didn't have to do full-time police work for over 2/3 of the Commonwealth, they wouldn't have to have so many troopers in the middle of no where answering calls for free.
Municipalities in rural areas that rely on PSP for patrol work pay very little, if anything, to the state for the coverage. If a municipality contracts with a local police department, they end up paying a decent amount of money to get the same patrolling power. Well, the patrols and coverage they would receive contracting with a local department might be greater than what PSP can offer, solely because there's more manpower to go around.
This wouldn't resolve everything but if the county sheriffs had more power and were actually able to let their deputies do police work, that would relieve some of the duties of PSP and they would be able to work on other stuff. Yet, only one or two counties in PA actually have sheriffs (and their deputies) with full police powers. And these counties are in urban areas where there already are many police departments, so the need for a central agency to take over is unnecessary. If rural sheriff's were granted the same powers, it would take some of the burden off of PSP's shoulders so someone else can do the patrolling. But as far as I can see, the state doesn't want that.
There's some things that PSP may not be required to do, but are expected to do. These are generally true throughout most of the states in the USA: traffic enforcement on the highways, SWAT type situations, water rescues, aircraft support, statewide disaster support... I might be missing some things but I covered most of it. I realize that some do, but most state agencies don't have their state police doing all of the police work across over 50 percent of the state, aside from Alaska. If PSP cut back to doing just those things, they would save a ton of money, not only on the cost of troopers who are in these rural areas in the middle of no where, but also in terms of being able to do more pro-active work and get criminals off the streets.
Laying off troopers might save them money, but it's going to hurt them in the long run. That's 500 less troopers throughout the state, and most are probably going to be cut from the same rural areas where they're desperately needed. One trooper might end up being on the shift, by himself, for an entire county...and that isn't a good sign.
Last edited by krypton2; 12-11-2011 at 09:25 PM.
Do you think the passing of the castle doctrine aided in a minor way to potentially cut so many troopers?
This article from only back in March discussed funding increase for PSP.
Pennsylvania State Police funding increase is 'refreshing,' says troopers union | PennLive.com
Castle doctrine is passed in June allowing home owners to shoot to kill in self defense out side their home or business. I am wondering how the crime levels dropped since the passage of the law. Not sure how it went from funding increase to 500 layoffs in 9 months but something odd is going on.
I can't pull any stats for you right now on the crime rate over the past few months but I don't think there's any correlation between the lack of money available and the Castle Doctrine.
Even if a person now has the ability to protect themselves to a greater extent than before, a police officer still is necessary should a crime occur. Whether it's a home invasion before the Castle Doctrine was passed or a home invasion with suspect down after the Castle Doctrine is passed, both still need a police response. Actually, for that matter, if there's a greater number of people protecting themselves through firearms now, that would mean more police officers are needed, as any call involving firearms usually involves a large police response, and a fast one at that.
No one has money right now...whether we are talking the local government, county government, state government, federal government... this is just another piece to the budget puzzle. The amount of money available isn't as high as it should be, so cuts are being put on all different departments.
Seems like there making room for Lidar guns and new radar units.They could be getting ready for the new radar law to pass soon.
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The difference is that a new radar or laser gun is somewhere in the $2500 range. (approximately) I'm sure that it costs at least 150K a year to keep one trooper on the road.
First the PSP are probably the most profession police force you will find. You hardly and about any issue with them and the work they do except for the recent issue where two PSP provide Security to Big Ben when he was accused of raping that girl at a college campus bar. Yes the PSP do lots more than most State's police force, however, because of them PA does not have issue with all kinds of towns trying to set up police department then using ticketing as a means to pay for them. This is one time where I say PA needs to figure something out, otherwise it will be not long until PA turns into a police state like many other states in this country.