Editorial — Frankford, Dagsboro discussing creative solution

Date Published: 
Sept. 15, 2017

The Town of Frankford has been relying on Delaware State Police coverage since the resignation of former police chief Mark Hudson in July. Even before Hudson’s departure, there were some concerns that there simply wasn’t enough police coverage in the town, particularly with the area-wide rise in heroin-related crimes.

Dagsboro Police Chief Floyd Toomey may have found a solution.

Toomey spoke to Frankford residents earlier this week about a proposal where the two towns would unify their departments, under the leadership of Toomey, and would result in six officers patrolling and protecting both Dagsboro and Frankford.

It’s important to note that this would not be a merger of two departments into one. It would be two departments working together under one chief, dividing and allocating resources as statistics and citizens demand, with each town still able to apply for grants. There would also be a police commission, consisting of Toomey and the mayors of both towns. It really is a terrific idea.

However, there is a big “however” floating out there.

The proposal would cost Frankford an estimated $121,406 in salaries, insurance and pensions for two officers — not including fuel for patrol cars, maintenance, uniforms and other assorted costs. Town Councilman and Council Treasurer Marty Presley said the biggest reason for Frankford to pause on this move is the estimated $215 to $220 property tax increase per Frankford household.

That is not an insignificant figure, even if we all agree that public safety is of paramount concern.

This really is a creative idea. Now it’s time to see if it’s feasible.