Berkeley Police Department could be eliminated due to budget constraints

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by Cory Stark/ KMOV.com

KMOV.com

Posted on December 27, 2013 at 7:28 PM

Updated Friday, Dec 27 at 7:41 PM

(KMOV.com) -- A north St. Louis County police department could dissolve soon due to a lack of money.

Nathan Mai-Lombardo, the Berkeley City Manager, said the city has been in talks with the St. Louis County Police Department to have them take over police services for the city.

Mai-Lombardo said the city of Berkeley is facing a $1.3 million budget deficit and that all options are on the table in order to balance the budget.

Berkeley officials told News 4 they were given an estimate from St. Louis County Police that it would cost between $2.2-2.8 million for the county to run police operations for the city.

The current budget for the Berkeley Police Department is $3.2 million dollars, but the city manager is working to get that number down to $2.8 million with no layoffs and the same level of service.

Mai-Lombardo says the goal is to keep the Berkeley Police Department intact.

“Nothing is done, or really desired to do. The question is how do you fill the deficit and still preserve jobs and still preserve services,” said Mai-Lombardo, “So this was an option that was discussed.”

Mai-Lombardo did not have a time line as to when a decision will be made on how they’ll move forward with the police department, but did indicate all departments in Berkeley will take a hit in order to balance the budget.

Stay with News 4 and KMOV.com for more details. 

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