Members include Chairman Jason Ward, Polk County Board of Commissioners and County Manager Matt Denton; Dale Tuck, Cedartown City Commission; Rockmart Mayor Steve Miller and City Managers Jeff Ellis, Rockmart and Bill Fann, Cedartown.
This group met in a lengthy session Thursday, Jan. 23, to discuss a list of proposals presented by Ward.
Consolidation of police departments was the first agenda item. City leaders have different opinions about how to reach short and long-term goals.
Ellis said he has previously participated in consolidation planning. He reminded the group that previous research revealed that no officer would lose a job and how consolidation could prevent duplication of services.
Ellis also pointed out that it would bring about more efficient use of resources and time management.
Developing and implementation this plan would take up to three years, Ellis said.
Fann voiced support of police consolidation but said he preferred a drug task force as a short-term priority. He emphasized this option could be achieved in six to 12 months.
Tuck said that Polk County residents want something done about crime not only in the cities but also in the county. Mayor Miller agreed with this idea. He said public opinion in Rockmart is “do something” to “protect our children and neighborhoods.”
Ward has asked Ellis to develop and bring back to the group recommendations for long-term consolidation of police services. He also invited Fann to present options for a drug task force.