Ford on Precinct Merger: We Can Generate Savings of $20 Million

She says the merger will not impact patrols on the barrier island.

Dubbed by some as "the most important vote in the history of the Nassau County Legislature," Legis. Denise Ford (R-Long Beach) voted in favor of the precinct realignment plan. To her, it was mainly a matter of saving money.

“I realized that we have to close the budget gap,” Ford told Patch on Tuesday morning. “There’s no two ways about it. By doing something like this, we can generate savings of about $20 million a year, which will help.”

The plan, which calls for eight police precincts to merge into four, was approved Monday afternoon by a 10-9 final vote, with each legislator voting along party lines.

In voting for the bill, Ford said that the realignment plan should not impact the Long Beach Police Department, nor police patrols in Atlantic Beach, East Atlantic Beach, Lido Beach and Point Lookout, the areas on the barrier island covered by county’s 4th Precinct in Hewlett, which will remain intact.  

“It shouldn’t effect the Long Beach police at all because they are a separate department,” Ford said, noting that the city does utilize county detectives and other crime scene units. “The patrols will stay the same. So that whatever cars will patrol in Lido, Point Lookout and Atlantic Beach will still be there. And we will also have an increase in what are called POP cops who will patrol at well.”

Ford said she agreed with newly appointed Commisioner Thomas Dale when he presented the plan, but prior to the vote Minority Leader Kevan Abrahams grilled him on it, saying that the legislature shouldn't be voting on something that is constantly "in flux."

The nine Democratic members of the legislature focused their argument against the realignment on the concept that it simply wasn't ready. Abrahams attempted to table the vote on the precinct plan until more details were made available, but the motion was voted down by the legislature and, eventually, the realignment was approved.

"I commend the county legislature for approving this public safety plan that adds more police officers to our community and protects residents from a property tax hike," Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano said in a statement. "... This is a win-win for residents as it results in more safety and not more taxes."

The Nassau County Police Benevolent Association, like Abrahams, cited numerous problems with Mangano's plan to merge precincts.

Last week, it was announced that the county had postponed its vote on the merger after "progressive" discussions with law enforcement unions over the weekend.

PBA President Jim Carver said Monday that the PBA and county had made "a lot of strides" in the last week while negotiating. He continued by saying that the legislature should take at least another week to think the decision through and give both sides more time to negotiate. "In my opinion, this was not ready to be voted on," Carver said. "... They were not listening to anybody's argument, they just wanted to vote 'yes' to close the precincts -- that's it."

After the vote, Carver told Patch that he will continue to work with Mangano and his administration on fixing some of the perceived errors in the county executive's plan.

Eddie March 06, 2012 at 07:41 PM
Nice to see the Republicans working on cutting costs and taxes. That's what we elected them to do. More cops on the streets and a $20 million savings for taxpayers. This was a joint plan by the PBA and the County. The PBA refused concessions to cut costs, so this was imposed. Democrats' alternative plan: Raise taxes. Again.
LB Guy March 06, 2012 at 10:19 PM
Over 99 % of the officers on with the Nassau Police do their job honorably but I predict that corruption amongst the ranks will increase. The officers on the streets will be less supervised leaving younger and more impressionable officers on their own to make mistakes without being noticed.
Eddie March 06, 2012 at 10:31 PM
Why would they be less supervised? They don't report at the police stations or relieve each other at the stations and generally only go there to book arrests which they'll do at the remaining precincts. Their protocol requires the response of a superior officer in certain situations and I don't think that's changing. Unless there's a mass exitos of experienced men, why would supervision levels decline?
ed m March 06, 2012 at 10:45 PM
Eddie some plans sound great in theory but create many new and unforeseen problems in practice. Lets just wait and see. I'm just glad that I don't live in an area protected by NCPD.
Lloyd March 06, 2012 at 10:46 PM
Uh oh! If the cops dont have a precinct anymore to report to where will they pee and shower? Where will they make all those phone calls to us to raise money for the Retired Officers Benevolent Society?
Eddie March 06, 2012 at 10:53 PM
They have those neighborhood booths, which each contain a lavatory. They are in the sectors they patrol and that is where they report to work and get relieved at the completion of their tours. The fundraisers who call you are usually frauds calling from Florida.
Billy Boy March 06, 2012 at 11:37 PM
It is really time for Denise Ford to step down. She is a nice lady but that don't cut it any more. She is a puppet of the republican machine- she voted to close precincts while the final plan is still on the block and not finalized. How do you make the biggest change in Nassau Police history proposed by a commissioner who has 32 days on the job and publicly admitted he had never been involved in this type of change. Ford votes to make those changes and has no idea of what this will bring. Then again- she was the legislator who said- Nassau is just like Queens!!!! Yea, great representative.
Karen McInnis March 06, 2012 at 11:52 PM
The question for Long Beach is really by how much is our $5 million? annual NCPD "surcharge" to our General Operating budgt going down and when............
Karen McInnis March 06, 2012 at 11:57 PM
Budget that is. And to make sure at least some estimated savings are in fact budgeted for the upcoming fiscal year by our City Manager.
Harland Fulbright March 07, 2012 at 12:10 AM
We should go to an all volunteer police force. Lots of folks that watch CSI would love to do it for free. How hard can it be? Also, the volunteers cab be given shotguns so that even if they are not good shots they can still hit the target.
Lloyd March 07, 2012 at 01:13 AM
Thanks Eddie. I am relieved now knowing that our beloved NC police have a safe and warm place to relieve themselves after a hard day chasing down all those unlicensed and drunken drivers flooding our streets. So those guys trying to get me to donate money to some police sargeant's benevolent fund are all frauds? Geez! What is this country coming to? Can't even trust the charity fundraisers anymore. The police do a great job and I sup[port thenm. OK. There are some that are grossly overpaid and their pensions are killing us. I hear Austin Texas is a nice place to move to.
Harland Fulbright March 07, 2012 at 04:31 AM
If Disgrace to the Irish day was held on the last Sunday in September on the boardwalk witrh the parade ending there and the vendors set up like any other large boardwalk event that would save City $100,000 dollars in overtime. In addition, the rising violence and out of control drunken driving will wind up cost some innocent people their lives in the future. Lets end the insanity and do what makes sense. Also, I agree with the growing consensus on this site that the West End bras should have last call at 12am and be locked shut at 1am. Quite reasonable, why allow liquid drug sales 20 hours a day in a residential area? 8am to 1am, 17 hours of knock down drag out liquid drug abuse is fair and ample to, imo.
john March 07, 2012 at 12:05 PM
way to go denise.keep fighting for the taxpayer.thats what we elected you for and you came through on a tough vote.everyone always complains about taxes year after year and when someone has the guts to stand up for the working man you will always have the same self interest groups saying how bad it is.keep up the good work denise.
Tideline March 07, 2012 at 01:03 PM
The other side of that coin is, Denise Ford has been in Office for about 8 years now and has been in on many of the votes that have put us in the situation we are now in. She is part of the politcal patronage machine and only voted along party lines, as the others did.
Lloyd March 07, 2012 at 02:35 PM
Harland......you made some very good points regarding limiting liquor sale hours. But I disagree with the one recommending that "West End bras should be locked shut by 1 AM". Yes. There are lots of loose and unhooked bras in those late night W Beech St joints. But bouncing boobs is NOT a clear and present danger to the neighborhood.
IRISH March 07, 2012 at 02:42 PM
Ok so when do i see my taxes go down since we are saving all this money. NOT
Sags March 07, 2012 at 03:52 PM
The Police Department, the County Executive, and the PBA are still trying to work out the plan. So the republicans voted on a plan which has no real details and like always Denise Ford did what she was told and voted for the plan. You talk about saving money much like how she saved money when she voted to have a $2 million referendum in August instead of just waiting to have it in September with the primary. Much like when she fired 20 people to save $2 million and then paid a law firm (Ed Mangano’s law firm) $11 million to do the same job. Denise Ford likes to say it will not affect Long Beach, if crime increases in the rest of Nassau it will eventually come to Long Beach. Where do they plan on putting those officers whose precincts are closing? You are not at least according to what has been made know to us so far firing any police officer (which is sure to come) so how are you saving $20 million. Those building are still going to be open. They are still going to be used and you are apparently just moving the police officers to a different precinct so where are the savings come from. Denise Ford how about you actually do something other than just vote how you are told. Try just once try to know the issue and vote the way which is best for your district and Nassau County and not just vote how they tell you to. I ask you as a resident of Long Beach who wants to have a real voice in the County.
billy g March 07, 2012 at 06:35 PM
sags how about you telling us how to save 20 million from the police dept im looking forward to your ans.Denise ford is trying hard for the taxpayer.the real problem has always been the high priced contracts that they get.No one ever wants to tackle that problem.how about taking a 5 percent cut in pay and benifits during these hard times.would that be ok with you sags.
Nancy Mc. March 07, 2012 at 09:56 PM
Here is a political payoff my neighbor (a LB Cop) just told me about. The PBA President sues the Republicans in City Hall, then he supports the opposing Democrats. The election comes, Democrats win. Now the new Democrat controlled city council, settle the case (before a judge even has the chance to look at the case, for $24,999. Coincidentally, the city council doesn't have to approve the settlement because only awards of $25,000 have top go to a public hearing before the city council and this is $1 short of that requirement! If that's not bad enough, the Plaintiff also is getting a promotion tomorrow, actually 2 promotions, to Detective and Lieutenant! This new administration is absolutely disgusting. I voted for them, and they are 10 times worse than anything we have ever had before. LB needs to wake up! No wonder the city is broke!
orlando p March 07, 2012 at 10:48 PM
Bobby your so right about this.I hope all the other cops here see a sell out just happened.how slick is the 24999 payment the counsel doesnt have to approve.how much other stuff are they hiding.SOME FISCAL CRISIS.hiring there cronys for more money giving promotions.why did the pba wait so long till the dems got in then settle.somebody help me i have wool in my eyes.lol what crooks
UpnDown March 08, 2012 at 11:37 AM
Really? That is the least of the problems in this town. Angry west-ender
Candygram for Mongo March 08, 2012 at 08:16 PM
i vote for more West End bra's. Less bro's and more bra's.
Billy Boy March 08, 2012 at 09:13 PM
I heard Denise hit her head on the celiing when Peter Schmidt told her to jump!!! Denise has't done anything for her district other than provide Peter Schmidt with a sure unquestioned vote whenever he needs it. If they wanted to save moeny they should close her district office and fire her staff.
Eddie March 08, 2012 at 09:29 PM
If all she's done is vote to save me $20 million in taxes, she's done more for me and my family than the entire Democratic legislature and City Council combined!
joe March 09, 2012 at 02:53 AM
Billy boy i guess you just like having your taxes raised all the time.guys like you hate when republicans have to do it but its ok when dems do it.really get a backbone.
Lloyd March 09, 2012 at 04:58 PM
Next week is St. Partrick's Day...one of my favorite holidays. I hope nobody blasts that like they do Irish Day. To me its all the same. Eat lots of corned beef and cabbage, bangers and mash, and Irish soda bread. Wash it down with a few pints of Killians or Guinness and sing a few choruses of Danny Boy. Whats so bad about that? I would like to know whats the best restaurant to go to in town to celebrate St Patricks Day. Last year we went to the Whales Tail, but then got scolded here because it is owned by the Sofields. Whaddid I know then???


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