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Parents Plead but Funds for Full-time SROS not Restored

By Becky Coffey

Published January 15. 2013 10:12PM

About a hundred parents and other residents gathered at the Old Saybrook Middle School Auditiorium tonight to offer empassioned pleas to the town's Police Commission to reverse their vote of last Friday. At that time, the Commission by a 4 to 2 vote denied Police Chief Michael Spera's request to add two new patrolmen in the proposed budget the Commission sends to the Selectmen tomorrow.

Police Chief Michael Spera told the Commission in last Friday's meeting and again tonight that he needed the two new sworn officers to allow him to provide full-time instead of part-time SRO coverage at each public school.

A motion by Commissioner Metsack to restore the two new patrolmen positions to the police department budget failed tonight by a vote of 3 to 2. A motion by Chairman Christina Burnham to allow the Chief to use funding the Commission had approved for new civilian positions and administrative support to hire one sworn officer failed due the lack of a second to the motion.

Angry parents then returned to the microphone to declare their anger and opposition to the Commissions' votes. Several declared the group would stay organized and continue to fight for restoration of the new patrolmen positions.