Dear Residents of Bazetta Township:
In 1977 taxpayers of Bazetta Township passed the first tax in which developed the Bazetta Township Police Department. In that time one constable was the lone police officer in the township.
Today the Bazetta Police Department consists of six full-time and six part-time officers. We have eight patrol cars, shotguns, tasers, ASP, OC, handguns and mobile data terminals in every car while on patrol.
The purchasing of modern technology allows officers to respond to your complaints without undue delay. It lets officers determine if drivers have a license and insurance without stopping everyone and remove the offenders from our roadways.
Education and growth are key roles in the Bazetta Police Department. We have almost half of our officers with bachelor degrees, one with a master's degree and three military veterans. Our officers have specialized field training, evidence collection, management and a detective assigned to investigations. We have instituted extra programs to strengthen our community such as our safety day, food drives and blood drives. We provide youth outreach to our community. The Boy Scout tours as well as school presence at Lakeview Elementary bridges the gap between our youth and police officers.
The persistent development in our police department has been accomplished by fiscal decision-making of our tax dollars, as well as passage of levies by our residents. Our officers are attempting to provide police service with late 1970s taxes and loss of revenue is a constant dilemma. State funding has been cut by $56,569.30 per year and by 2016 will grow to $112,045.00. Another major factor is our loss of property taxes of $90,934.04.
Our officers have seen an increase in arrests, citations and calls for service. In 2012 our department handled 6,675 calls. This is more than any other year since I have been a part of our police department. This growth is a major concern and we continue to provide essential service to our citizens.
This is a chance to secure the funding of our police department and not have a negative impact on our community. We need your support! We are asking our residents to pass a 2.5-mill replacement levy to continue to provide professional police service. This would be an increase of $56.60 a year per $100,000 in valuations. This levy would hire an additional police officer and increase patrols, establish a senior check program, and replace aging cruisers and outdated equipment.
I am proud to say that I live and work in Bazetta Township. Our continued growth and support of our police department will ensure that this town will remain a safe place to live and work. Please vote yes on May 7, and we look forward to ensuring your safety in our community for years to come.
Check us out on Facebook (Bazetta Township Police Dept.) for police updates and information.
Michael J. Hovis
Acting Bazetta police chie