BEAVERCREEK — The election is just over a month away and Beavercreek city leaders are placing individual street and police levies with the hope to address space issues at the police department.
The Beavercreek Police Department moved into their current facility in 1997. While the building had a new façade, it wasn’t a new building.
The building itself is 60 years old and the department says they are completely out of space. Police Chief Jeff Fiorita showed News Center 7′s Mike Campbell a portable pod in the parking lot. He said that’s where the department where records are being stored due to the lack of space.
“Storage, actual location, security of the building, those are the three big things,” Fiorita said.
He said there are no secure parking lots at the department meaning that officers must go up and down with potentially combative people they’ve arrested or detained.
“There are multiple stairs in the secured area,” Fiorita said. “That creates a problem. We are out of space.”
When giving a tour of the department Wednesday, the chief noted that the building doesn’t have enough locker room space for officers to securely hang and store uniform and equipment.
Beavercreek City Council put a specific police levy on the ballot for November after voters tuned down the income tax levy in May. They hope it would raise enough money to help an additional five officers the department said they need, plus raise capital to help finance a new building. That could be a tough sell for some residents.
“Since the elections are coming up, that is all you hear, ‘easing taxes, raising taxes.’ Ok, so back it up for the good of all. Try to think of it this way,” Nancy Blatt, of Beavercreek, said.
Blatt said she knows the largest police department in the area is funded by specific police levies instead of being part of a line item in a city budget. The city hasn’t had a police levy since 2014.
“I always try to back up and think, ‘What caused this in the first place?’” Blatt said.
“If that’s what they need to make comfortable to do their job, but I’m just hoping they’re doing the right thing they should to make Beavercreek a better place,” Carson Wissel, of Beavercreek, said.
Beavercreek Police is holding an open house this Saturday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. for residents to get a behind-the-scenes look at the space and meet police staff.
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