Union representing State Troopers calling for more manpower and up-to-date equipment
The State Troopers union is pushing for more manpower and better weapons for the officers in the field. State Senator and former Trooper and Erie County Sheriff Patrick Gallivan says it may happen in the new state budget.
In recent decades, Troopers have been given more duties and are working in more areas, like Long Island where the former sheriff says their duties are more highway patrol than in many Upstate areas where they are the local police. Troopers are pulling more assignments in New York City and were recently assigned to check security on Planned Parenthood offices.
Gallivan says there are concerns they don't have the heavy weapons they might face in a crunch.
"That's been an age-old concern. But, we want to make sure that our law enforcement agencies, in this case the State Police, does have the most up-to-date equipment, that they are properly equipped, that they are properly trained and they are properly staffed. Any one of those things is not enough. It's the combination of all of them," says Gallivan.
There was a State Police Academy class which graduated in September and none is scheduled. Crime and Corrections Committee Chair Gallivan says there will be a push for more Troopers when the State Legislature returns but adding State Police gets very expensive very fast in wages and fringe benefits.