BRECKENRIDGE HILLS, Mo. - Rampant drug problems and not a single narcotics officer to deal with it, that's the claim from a north St. Louis County mayor.
Breckenridge Hills Mayor Jack Shrewsberry believes the town should get rid of the police department to save about $400,000 a year.
Shrewsberry says the city currently spending $1.2 million on the police department. He says if the St. Ann's police force works in the Breckenridge Hills area, the city could spend $850,000 on a contract for their police coverage. He says this agreement could save Breckenridge Hills about $400,000 a year.
At this point, Shrewsberry says he's willing to explore options of cutting the salaries in half of city officials including his own to save money. He says the city is living paycheck to paycheck.
St. Ann's police force has 74 officers. The 74 officers include 44 full time officers and 20 reserve officers. St. Ann also has a K9 unit in addition to narcotics officers. The arrangement would have also put three officers on the streets in Breckenridge Hills instead of two at a time.
The police chief says that his department is capable of hiring at least half of the Breckenridge Hills officers. However, many residents were very upset over this proposal. So upset that the mayor wasn't able to present the idea during Thursday night's city council meeting. They believed the city council was going to vote on getting rid of the police department during the meeting, even though Shrewsberry says he just wanted them to vote on giving him power to go forward with contract negotiations so that a firm agreement could be reached between the two cities.
Residents felt as though it would be unfair for the police officers to lose their job. They believe there is another way for the city to save money.
NewsChannel reached out to the police chief of Breckenridge Hills but he did not return our phone calls.