The Stamford Village Board is holding a public informational meeting at 7 p.m. Thursday to answer questions about a proposed village police department.

"Apparently, people have questions about the one-man, part-time police department," Mayor Anne Pratt Slatin said Tuesday.

The meeting will be held at the village hall.

Slatin said the village board decided in July to hire a law enforcement officer after a series of burglaries and violent incidents.

Slatin said the board advertised and interviewed candidates for a village constable position, but the board was advised by the Delaware County Sheriff's Department that a village constable had no power other than to issue parking tickets.

The board opted to form a police department instead and hired Richard Hatfield, 53, of Stamford. Hatfield is a retired 30-year veteran of the Pound Ridge Police Department, Slatin said.

Slatin said the board has not passed an official resolution forming the police department. She said she expects it to be considered at the regular meeting Sept. 16.

Hatfield will be paid $10,000 a year with no benefits. Slatin said the money was budgeted for the parking enforcement job, which has been eliminated.

Slatin said the board will not be purchasing a police car until the money is available, but the only way to apply for grants and state funding is to have a police department in place.

The only additional expenses expected, she said, are an increase in the village's liability and vehicle insurance policies, and $300 for uniforms.

Slatin said there were six burglaries in Stamford on the night of a shooting suspect's fatal standoff with police at Blume's Trailer Park on April 17.

"The state police and sheriff's deputies were all at the trailer park," Slatin said.

Three businesses, a family medical clinic, Stamford Fire House and the village hall were broken into, and about $500 was taken as well as an ax from the firehouse, Slatin said.

"It's a quality of life issue," she said.

On the night in question, the first report of a break-in did not come until 4 a.m. April 18, troopers said previously. The standoff at the trailer park ended at about 5:30 p.m. April 17.

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