Protection by sheriff preferred
I agree with Greene County sheriff candidate Eric Ketchem that the sheriff’s department of Greene County should work in concert with the Pennsylvania State Police in the protection of the citizens of the county.
I also agree that a satellite location or multiple locations would enhance the safety of the citizens. Ketchem has been criticized because his father is the current sheriff, but many the sons or daughters of many coal miners choose to follow in the footsteps of their fathers. I will admit that nepotism and cronyism are a perpetual problem of politics in Greene County as well as in the federal government. Most of all, we need candidates who will concentrate on the issues, not nitpick. We need leaders who aspire and inspire, who achieve with resolve and character without the motivation of celebrity, who don’t bind themselves to the past preventing them to move forward with wisdom.
The supervisors in Perry Township signed a contract with Southwest Regional Police Department over the objection of several taxpaying constituents who emphatically disagreed with the decision. Three individuals made this decision, while several hundred elect the sheriff. I would prefer that an elected sheriff and deputies who reside in Greene County patrol remote areas when the state police are covering other areas. The cost to Perry Township taxpayers is approaching $50,000 per year to have the Southwest Regional Police Department patrol 32 hours per week. We could instead divert this money to the sheriff’s department or pay the salary of an operator, if saving money is a consideration.
Where is the evidence to justify the retention of SWRPD? We were told that this department would enforce township ordinances. If there has been any enforcement, it is minimal. My wife and I filed a complaint concerning the depreciation of our property by a neighbor and after probable cause was found by a SWRPD officer, the Perry supervisors requested that the officer back off. This was just an affirmation of our suspicions that the supervisors would control the police and choose policy.
The supervisors appear to be paranoid due to the fact that a SWRPD officer is present at most meetings. Are they at the meetings only for the personal protection of the supervisors or secretary? If there is an imminent danger, the unsuspecting citizens who attend the meetings should be informed. I feel that we would be better served if the officer were patrolling the township.
When my wife accidently set off our silent alarm, the state police responded in less than 15 minutes. I know that this would require substantially more time in remote locations far removed from the interstate. This is why we need to protect our Second Amendments rights, so that a criminal is not the sole possessor of a weapon.