Police Millage Fails in Ingham County

By: Jamie Edmonds Email
By: Jamie Edmonds Email

"We don't know what's going to happen," Leslie Township Supervisor Dallas Henney said.

That is the honest truth coming directly from the Leslie Township Supervisor now that the police millage has failed.

"The general feeling in the out-county is that they pay enough in taxes for their services, they don't understand why the commissioners have done this to them," Henney said.

This budget cycle, county commissioners voted to cut road patrol service to the outlying townships to save money.

So affected townships joined together to put a millage on Tuesday's ballot to save it, but 12 out of the 13 said 'no.'

"I didn't think all of them would pass it, but I also didn't think most of them wouldn't, and that's exactly what happened," Sheriff Gene Wriggelsworth said.

Come January 1st, big changes are coming to those 12 townships, but maybe even bigger changes are coming to the Sheriffs Department itself.

"We are going to lose about eight deputies and we'll struggle to have 24-hour service," Wriggelsworth said.

Only nine deputies will remain come the first of the year. the sheriff met with staff early Wednesday to begin to work out a plan moving forward.

"Providing service is one issue, but providing it safely for our officers is another," he said.

"Things are definitely about to change, he said.

"People might come home and see their house is broken into and they won't get a patrol car for days and days.

It's a frightening scenario to many, but as Henney said, they don't have any other options.

"We've done everything we know how to do at this point so we just have to live with what we have come January first," he said.

Williamstown Township is the one and only township that passed anything at all. The treasurer tells News Ten, the full special assessment would raise about $300,000.

They've contacted all local police departments to see who they will contract with, it won't necessarily be the sheriff's office.

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