RANKIN, Pa. - Pennsylvania State Police will be taking over the night patrol in the Rankin Borough due to significant staffing issues.
RANKIN OFFICIALS: "This is not a money issue - this is a manpower issue." "It's our duty to keep everyone safe." @WPXI— Amy Hudak (@amy_hudak) October 8, 2019
City Council President William Price said, with a significant shortage of police officers, there's no way around it.
Price said Rankin asked other local police departments, all of which are faced with the same staffing dilemma.
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"Everybody is short, the county is short, the county sheriff is short," Price said.
Neighbors said they welcome state police given the public safety concern, but they also pointed to a much larger issue.
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"They need to get more people to come in and invest. There is a whole lot of land here to invest and raise the tax base to pay for more officers," said Marvin Akers, of Rankin.
Top leaders in Rankin said they'd like to eventually regionalize with other local police departments, including Braddock, North Braddock, East Pittsburgh and Whitaker.
If that happens, Price said, there will be more police officers with higher pay and better training covering each of the five communities.
State police will begin covering the night shift in Rankin in November.
The City Council also accepted the resignations of two part-time police officers during the meeting, further pointing out the staffing issues the department is facing.
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