Recently, Otsego County Officials were in the news trying to find ways to cut county spending and keep taxes at bay.
As I’ve been saying for some time, why do we allow the Otsego County sheriff’s deputies to take their police vehicles home just so they can commute back and forth to work at the taxpayers’ expense where no other police agency allows it?
Otsego deputies drive the expensive, uneconomical 14-mpg Chevy Tahoes at a base cost of $50,000 (not including the police package, which adds considerably much more to the price) instead of the much safer and economical Fords that the state police are switching back to.
Because the Otsego deputies take their vehicles home, they have to purchase more vehicles to cover all their shifts while the state police share their vehicles for the next shift to use.
With the rising cost of gasoline predicted to go over $4 per gallon, and an average daily commute round trip of 50 miles per sheriff, that adds to an additional $20 per day plus wear and tear and additional maintenance. Multiply that by the amount of vehicles and by 365 days.
The Fords can hold all the equipment that the state police need, so a bigger vehicle is not necessary for the Otsego deputies unless they need all that room to fit their egos.
I have been getting a lot of support with this and I think it’s time that we let our elected officials know how we feel and put a stop in allowing the deputies to use their police vehicles to commute to and from work at our expense. This is a sure way for Otsego County to cut some spending and keep our property taxes low.
Michael J. Stavola