Volpe's Views: Police Budget

Volpe's Views: Police Budget

Last year I reported here that money intended in the state budget's vehicle fund for road maintenance and construction projects was being siphoned off to shore up the state police budget.

In the 2017-18 fiscal year, $802 million from the vehicle fund will have been spent for state police. In the last 15 years, the state police budget nearly doubled. Thirty percent of the vehicle fund covered 65 percent of the state police budget.

More than half of the municipalities across the state have no police department and are dependent upon the state police for protection. That's right. Some of us pay local taxes for police and some of us haven't paid for decades.

The governor is aware of the unfairness of this and again has put a $25 per person "service fee" in the tentative budget on each person living in a town protected by the state police. The fee was removed from the budget last year.

This is one instance where the legislature cannot continue to kick the can down the road. As a lawyer, I'd say it seems ripe now for a lawsuit on constitutionality.

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