OSSINING, N.Y. -- The Town of Ossining will begin negotiations with the Village of Ossining to use its police force.
Ossining Town Supervisor Susan Donnelly made the announcement Tuesday night. The town had contracted with the Westchester County Police for the past four years. The town and village must complete negotiations by Oct. 15.
The four-year Westchester County contract would cost the town $10.3 million or about $2.5 million annually, while the village contract would cost $7.5 million for four years, or about $1.87 million annually.
"The Village of Ossining’s proposal has many attractive elements, specifically the opportunity to pursue consistent policing throughout both the Town and Village, and also in the Ossining school system," Donnelly said.
If negotiations are not completed by Oct. 15, Donnelly said the town board will request a one-year extension on its contract with the county.
"Both the Village of Ossining and the Westchester County Department of Public Safety are exemplary public forces," Donnelly said. "We feel the unincorporated area would be in good hands either way. Engaging armed police officers charged with protecting the public is the most sensitive service we provide."
Donnelly said the town has concerns about certain details about the village's proposal that have kept them from making an agreement.
"The village should not enter into this contract if it believes the contract can be renegotiated or the services reduced if the costs are found to exceed the guaranteed amounts the town will be charged under the proposal," Donnelly said.
Village of Ossining Mayor Bill Hanauer said he was pleased by the town board's decision, though he was taking a wait and see approach.
"There are negotiations ahead," Hanauer said. "Negotiations have started and they can have a life of their own."
Hanauer said the deal would have positives for both the village and the town.
"It would give us five more police officers which gives flexibility in the way scheduling can be done," Hanauer said. "It's another intermunicipal agreement. Sharing staff in the long run will cost us less."
The Village of Mount Kisco has also considered outsourcing its police department to the county.
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