HARRISBURG, Pa. (KDKA) — A proposal in Gov. Tom Wolf’s new budget would charge towns that don’t have local police departments for the services they receive from the Pennsylvania State Police.
Gov. Wolf’s proposal would require all municipalities in Pennsylvania to help fund the state police, whether they have their own force or not.READ MORE: Major Outage Hits Amazon Web Services, Affecting Many Sites
But the communities that rely on state police for police protection would have to pay much more.
Hempfield Township’s share would be more than $3 million.
“We don’t have $3 million in our budget,” Hempfield Township Manager Jason Winters said. “We would have to look to see how we can make these payments.”
Winters said other than the regular taxes they pay to the state, their state police services are free.READ MORE: Port Authority Holds Public Meetings On Mon Valley Transit Upgrades
Unity Township, a smaller community that also depends on the state police, would have to come up with $1.7 million.
“Our residents would have to pay it,” Unity Township Manager Michael O’Barto said. “I don’t think they’d be very happy.”
The proposal would require approval by the legislature.
State Rep. George Dunbar supports funding the state police through the motor licensing fund, but he disagrees with the governor’s plan.
“These taxpayers are already paying for their police force, 40 percent of their annual budget,” Dunbar said. “They should not have to pay taxes again.”
State Rep. Eric Nelson blames the governor for over-spending and trying to make up for it by raising taxes.MORE NEWS: COVID-19 In Pittsburgh: Allegheny County Reports 849 New Cases
“Harrisburg should not be trying to pressure our local governments to increase taxes on people because he’s overspending in his own backyard,” Nelson said.