Police Chief Pushes For Additional Officer

NEWPORT CITY - Police Chief Seth DiSanto and City Manager John Ward, Jr. would like to have an additional police officer to eliminate the times when only one officer is working.Ward and DiSanto pitched the idea to the city council Monday when it took a second look at the 2014-2015 proposed budget.“I’ve finally come to the conclusion in my own mind that it’s not safe to have an officer on duty by himself,” said Ward. “To fix that problem we’ll be going to a 12-hour shift.”Last fall the council agreed to have one of its officers work at North Country Union High School as a school resource officer. If the council decides not to hire a new officer, the city would not renew the contract with the high school and the officer, Richard Wells, would return to the streets and work 12-hour shifts, saving the taxpayers $52,000, the cost of the additional officer.“To me that’s almost a no brainer,” said council president John Wilson. He said the cost of the school resource officer still costs city taxpayers money, but through the education tax. “Let the school go to the sheriff or somebody. He contracts out all the time.”Please see The Newport Daily Express Thursday for the complete story.