Clarkstown Plans To Pull Police Officers From County Narcotics & Intel Units (VIDEO)

No signed contract for 2012 and no reimbursements paid


Clarkstown Town Supervisor Alex Gromack announced Tuesday night the town would be pulling its four police officers from the Rockland County on April 15 unless there was a signed contract for 2012.  The Clarkstown Town Board voted in favor of the action. Gromack said he was prepared to return the police officers to duty on the town police force unless the county produces the $3.1 million necessary to reimburse the five towns for the officers they provide. 

Clarkstown’s action follows that of Orangetown Town Board, which voted last week to remove its officers because of the absence of the annual contract. Gromack said the other three towns in the county are expected to pass similar resolutions within the next week.

“We also have been operating without a contract from the county executive,” said Gromack.  “We’re into the third month of this year and we still don’t have a contract and that’s not a good position for us to be in.” 

Up until last year, Gromack said the county reimbursed the town fully in past years for the officers and had signed annual agreements. He said Rockland did not reimburse the town for $168,000 worth of expenses Because of the county’s financial troubles and its growing debt, he said the continuation of the task forces is uncertain.     

Although legislators found $2 million to fund the task forces, Gromack said the District Attorney has not been able to confirm he can use $1 million of county seizure funds to make up the balance. 

“What we’ve said was unless they can somehow close that gap we can’t keep funding county programs because we have responsibility to our budget and our residents,” explained Gromack. “We’ve been trying ever since to find out if the county is going to close the gap using county seizure funds of $1.1 million.” 

The towns began discussions last year when County Executive C. Scott Vanderhoef said he was cutting the budget and removing the funding for the units.  He removed the task forces from his proposed 2012 budget. Law enforcement officials rallied to have the units reinstated, which the legislature did.

The resolution also noted several other programs the county had funded in the past that have been eliminated or for which may not be funded. The additional programs listed were the Board of Elections costs, the countywide mosquito control program and Hi-Tor Animal Care Center.  Gromack said the elections expenses alone could run between $300,000 and $500,000. 

Watchdog March 23, 2012 at 08:44 AM
86% of the Clarkstown Polce job is TRAFFIC related. Grossly overpaid.
Watchdog March 23, 2012 at 08:49 AM
JP Does "All Parties" include the cops? You did not answer. Were you "stifled"?Or did you lose the "purity of your conviction"?
commonsense March 23, 2012 at 11:59 AM
Many of us do know what the police actually do as we have police professionals in our immediate families. Clarkstown PD is overpaid. It is simple. You will continue to lose the respect of the community as long as your perks and salary remain so high. We are not questioning your dedication or skills. We cannot continue to hand out contracts that promote accumulation of unused sick days, paid dry cleaning for poly uniforms that can be thrown in the machine at home, and generous base pay rates that are too kind even without any rank. The truth is the CPD needs quite a few years of contracts with 0% increases. It is an honorable profession, but please don't lecture us that it's dangerous because you must wear a vest. I'm assuming you knew that before you signed up. Lastly, as a taxpayer I don't appreciate when I see patrol cars idling outside your house with radio/computers on while you are inside for extended periods of time doing whatever instead of patrolling.
Watchdog March 23, 2012 at 12:13 PM
Dedication? How could they be dedicated when they DEMAND 81 days off every year and salaries and benefits paid for by the folks who can least afford it......senior citizens? I do not call that dedication....I think it is a disgrace.
Pat March 23, 2012 at 12:39 PM
Salaries of currently employed officers need to be frozen and their benefits need to be reevaluated. New hires salaries need to be cut drastically. The "best of the best" mantra is nonsense because there will still be thousands applying for positions in the future.
Watchdog March 23, 2012 at 12:47 PM
There is ZERO correlation between the the demand and supply of these jobs. If they were not controlled by politicians and the unions, if completely opened up to qualified people, salaries would drop drastically.
Lets TALK REALITY>>>if a store owner.or docter gets less revenue..because of insurance companys new pay scales for MD's and lack of customers for the store owner.what do they do?? the live on LESS..!!the MD will STILL HELP PATIENTS.yet in this town..there is a HUGE-DISCONECT.91 days sick leave? that is a CRIME..THE TAXPAYERS are NOT YOUR FREE LUNCH.we are the true BOSSES.everyone file TAX APPEALS!!!should a older retired homeowner"LOWER THEIR HEAT"?or not eat because of this disgusting pay structure??NO WAY!!I have seem employees driving their family in their unmarked cars.maybe next time I write the number and call Gromack!!WE LIVE IN A SAFE WORLD for the most part.we the taxpayers need BULLET PROOF ARMOUR for the travestys done to us.wait till 7 or more years when the funds dry up..then we will hear all the crying..NO MORE TAX INCREASES!
mike sullivan March 23, 2012 at 03:14 PM
all you people do is complain about taxes,politians,unions,if you don't like it around here just move.It's like watching tv if you don't like whats on just change the channel I have needed the clarkstown police on a couple of instances and i think they are great.Do i wish my taxes were a little lower,yeah,but crying over them is going to do nothing.But I CHOOSE TO LIVE HERE!! I am in the construction field ,do i wish that i decided to be a police officer ,Maybe? but i am not jealous of what they have and get,NO everything on the patch seems to center around taxes,politics even when the topic is 180 degees opposite It's getting to the point that it's hard to read anymore
Watchdog March 23, 2012 at 03:24 PM
Sully, take your own advice and don't read this newspaper. What is happening here is informative and since taxpayers are paying these outrageous salaries they have a right to voice their concern. You haves very narrow view saying that unions " should take all they can get" That is wrong Sully. Fo you think cops who are so dedicatied should have 81 days off each year? Something is very WRONG with that.
Walt March 23, 2012 at 04:36 PM
Explain this 81 days off to me that you're so focused on. Private sector people work 5 days a week so with weekends off, that would add up to 110 days off. Add holidays and you would push the number up at least to 120 plus 2 or 3 weeks paid vacation and you're looking at over 130 days off. I agree they are overpaid but I don't get your outrage on the number of days off.
Watchdog March 23, 2012 at 05:16 PM
Walt: 30 Vacation 24 Sick 8 Bereavement 7Personal 12 Holidays If they work one hour on a holiday they paid for four hours at double time. A full days pay for one hour. Don't think this does not happen Check the Ckarkstown Taxpayers site for more goodies. I can't list them all without puking.
Watchdog March 23, 2012 at 05:17 PM
They also work 4 days a week on 10 hour shifts. Ypu know four on three off!
Dawn Lafasciano March 23, 2012 at 06:22 PM
Watchdog you should fire your source, Clarkstown police officers work 5 days a week, 8 hour shifts and they do not get 8 bereavement days. One should not blog if they do not have the right facts.
Watchdog March 23, 2012 at 06:31 PM
Dawn...please put your full list of permitted days off. Taxpayers are real interested in this outrage. PS.. Don't expect Dawn to reply.
Watchdog March 23, 2012 at 07:41 PM
Dawn,where are you with the information about days permitted off in a year for Clarkstown cops? Or are you just going to snipe and tell others their information is wrong. Step up to the plate.
Watchdog March 23, 2012 at 07:43 PM
MY information is that the CPD police are "off the job" more days during the year than "on the job"
Phil Costa March 23, 2012 at 10:32 PM
Dear Watchdog: I am a retired Clarkstown Police Officer, and served proudly for 29 years. My Choice. I serve my community as a member of the New City FD, and have done so for 41+ years. My Choice My entire adult life I have worked two jobs, Own a home in New City, and have a Photography Business. My Choice. I sign in using my own name on Patch. My choice and as it should be. These are my decisions. All good ones for sure. You have apparently made the choice to knock the Clarkstown PD, often based upon biased facts and personal opinion. You Sir/Madam are out of line. No matter what, you get what you pay for. Yes, the taxes are high,( I pay them too!). I will continue to do so as I like the quality of life here. Many of the Officers serving today and in the past, are Lawyers, former federal and local law enforcement officers, EMT's, Firefighters, Teachers, and even a Atomic engineer. Advanced degrees are common. Higher education is the norm. Competition to get appointed is fierce and the standards are high. As it should be. As per your comments about and directed to Patch Blogger "Dawn", they are abusive and not proper. It is easy to be a web version of a "Telephone Tough Guy" when not using your own name. My name is Philip Costa; I live in New City; and am very proud to say I was a Clarkstown Police Officer. I have helped to save lives, arrested armed felons, and fought fires in this community. I have stepped up to the plate, have You??
mike sullivan March 23, 2012 at 10:52 PM
Well said Phil Thank you and all the other retirees for your service!
Watchdog March 24, 2012 at 01:15 AM
Phil, did you also go to Drama School? My comments are about salaries, benefits an exhorbant time off which drive up taxes that perhaps you can afford since you had a business while working full time as a cop. Senior citizens have to sell their homes because they can no longer afford to live here. Your long diatribe, mostly about Phil, failed to address any of that. Bring a trained, albeit retired cop, you should have read the comments before calling me abusive which I consider to be an inflammatory remark with no basis in fact. Dawn said my information was incorrect and I asked her to post hers. She still as not done that and she does not need you to defend her. It is nice that you were able to work all those hours as a police officer and still have a full time photography business. No one in the private sector I know of would be able to do that. And Phil, as much as you love yourself your job as a cop is no more important than the bank teller who clears your check or the porter who commutes 2 hours each way to NYC to clean offices. Or the lawyer or investment banker who leaves hs house at 5:30AM and comes home at 9PM or later. The difference is they do not get six weeks vacation, 24 sick days, 7 personal days, 8 bereavement days, uniform cleaning allowances, 20 year retirement and free medical for life etc etc etc. Now THAT is ABUSIVE. Think about THAT tonight when you hug yourself to sleep.
Watchdog March 24, 2012 at 01:21 AM
Those comments are reserved for those heroes serving in our military. You should be ashamed for using them for someone who had a well paying job with enough time off to have another full time business in Smallville USA.
A OBSERVATION...Phil happy to see you let everyone know about your serving on the fire department..its well appreciated..BUT many people young adults..older adults ALSO SERVE on THOSE DEPARTMENTS with NO PAY ..they do it for internal reasons..I dont understand your having to let us all know about your service... BUT all the volunteers WHO DO SERVE AND PROTECT the reisdents and SAVE LIVES do NOT get paid 150,000 plus..they do it for the right reasons..so with all the defense in regards to the over the TOP pay SCALE for a MINI CITY..ALICE this isnt FAIRLYLAND...NYC police are at much more risk and all work and do it for good reasons without the whimpering...NYC has a lot of super wealthy residents protected for the most part by police making 40 to 50% less..and they are safe..we the TAXPAYERS ARE ALLOWED to voice DISCONTENT..we are the ones funding the jobs so all you employees should understand that you all work for US..and seriously way too many cops have second JOBS so it must be because of all the free time they manipulate so it can work for them..MR WATCHDOG thank you!!we are so right on here
Watchdog March 24, 2012 at 02:46 AM
I grew up with a lot of NYC firemen and NYC cops and not once did I ever hear them talk about themselves as if they were Captain America. They did their jobs and kept quiet about it. Two of my neighbors on my street are well-respected family men who work for the NYC Police Department. I never hear the self serving remarks and not once did they ask me if I ever "stepped up to the plate", a disparaging self serving remark if I ever heard one. This is all to take attention from the posts regarding salaries and benefits which not one of these so-called public servants has the gall to address. Seniors are hurting and one of the reasons for this is the outrageouls salary and benefits received by the Clarkstown Police Department.
Mike Hirsch March 24, 2012 at 03:04 AM
Phil, speaking only for myself, my complaint is not with the the police, but rather with their union and our so-called elected representatives who have given the PBA members unsustainable salary and benefit packages for the past 30 years. The truth is that NYS has been losing people and businesses for over 20 years now largely because of the tax burden. The PBA is not solely to blame. The pay scale for school superintendents is also out of whack, as is the pay scale for many of the town employees. The police should not take this personally. No one is criticizing the job they do, they are just saying that we can no longer afford to pay for these salary and benefit packages. I think it's very sad when native New Yorkers who like where they live have to move to a different state because they can no longer afford to live here.
William Demarest (Editor) March 24, 2012 at 03:08 AM
I have been on drug raids in Rockland with members of the Narcotics Task Force - cops from all over Rockland County - and each time I was amazed at how deep and widespread the drug problem is in Rockland County and how it affects the lives of families in every neighborhood. What I have witnessed: These cops are fighting crime and saving lives. This is in a county where once upon a time the cops were not working together, and mobsters operated out in the open.
Watchdog March 24, 2012 at 03:19 AM
We are all glad that they are doing the job they are trained to do. Problem Vanderhoef has is that he cannot afford them. They are too expensive. That is the problem here not their performance. Its all about the money and benefits which the County cannot afford.
Madeline March 24, 2012 at 11:36 AM
Way to go!!!! I live in Clarkstown too and I choose to be here for the same reasons... My family and I gave up 35 years of our lives in support of my husband who was a very very proud member of the Clarkstown P.D in police communications his choice, served as a volunteer fireman his choice. Many holidays, birthdays and family occassions missed to serve you the public and your families to keep you safe. I am sick of the comments and and negatives about the Clarkstown PD , time to move on!! If you have so many issues with Clarkstown move out!!!!!
Watchdog March 24, 2012 at 11:56 AM
Madaline, please, the point being made is more about the grossly overpaid and overbenefited police force that is contributing to loss of senior citizens who built that wonderful life you have and you tell them, "thanks for paying all tnose high taxes and for giving my husband that salary and pension and free medical for life by the way if you can no longer afford it Mr. & Mrs Senior Citizen, pkease move out" Pull the ladder up, I am up. I am sure that you were more than adequately compensated with double time for working those holidays In your own hometown and with the 81 days off your husband enjoyed at our expense, there was more time with with the family than anyone I know who works in the private sector. Your buddy Phil had so much time off in fact, he started another full time business.
Michael N. Hull March 24, 2012 at 05:24 PM
Drug interdiction costs the U.S. about $15 Billion per year. If we legalized drugs we could put two research hospitals in each and every State in the U.S. Let's say 1/2 of these hospitals were devoted to cancer research (that's 50!) cancer could be a thing of the past in a couple of years. Why not treat drugs like alcohol. Didn't we go down this road with prohibition?
Watchdog March 24, 2012 at 07:36 PM
Let's see, if the cops work 5 days a week, that's 260 and they are entitlled to 81 days off in their last contract, that equates to working 179 days a year with 181 day spent with their families,except of course you are Captain America aka Phil Bosco then you open and operate a full time photography business. Maybe it is me but I just don't see how that equates to "giving" up 35 years of your life when your husband works locally, has no 2 hour cmmute is 5 minutes from home for any emergency and is off 180 days a year? Can someone explain this to the senior citizen who cannot afford to live here any longer? BTW for those cops on a 4 day work week (4 on, 3 off), they work 208 days less 81 permitted off or a total of 127 days. Plenty of time for a full time outside business like Captain America.
mike sullivan March 29, 2012 at 11:03 AM
watchdog i didn't know we had a seperate language for the military


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