Rising health care costs and funding shortfalls have Hubbard Township Trustees looking for ways to keep their police department, while trying to maintain some services, before money from a new levy kick in next year.   

Facing a deficit by years end in the police department, Hubbard Township Trustees voted to make some changes in their police department.

Among the changes, they will continue to enforce their no overtime rule; they will remove their officer from TAG and the county detective bureau and put them on duty in the township. Officers who live five miles or more away from the department will be charged to take home their patrol car.
But those most affected will be the part-time officers.  They will all be idled until further notice. 

"We're working with the union; we had some talks. We are able to save some money. I think we are in a position now to reverse what we thought would be layoffs in the full-time department," said Trustee Rick Hernandez.

But while trustees originally planned for each part timer to work 16 hours a month as volunteers, the police chief got them to rethink that. 

"My concern is if we had that 16-hour requirement, most would leave for other employment.  So if and when our budget becomes solvent, by all means, we want to bring them back," said Chief Todd Coonce.

Trustees say they will continue with these changes at least until the end of the year at that time they will regroup and take a look at the numbers. If they don't improve, they will have to continue with the changes until May when the new money comes in from the taxpayers.