Tompkins County
New York

Report or Discussion Item

Sheriff's Department Report - October 2017


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Category:Routine Departmental Activities or Statistics


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Meeting History

Nov 16, 2017 3:00 PM  Public Safety Committee Regular Meeting

Sheriff Lansing reported that during this week the Department has been undergoing a review of its accreditation. He just learned everything was good and the Department was reaccredited.

The Committee reviewed items contained in the Department Report.

Mr. John referred to a request made at the last meeting to see Jail statistics by day rather than month and asked if that could be included in the next agenda. Mr. Lansing said that would be done.

Mr. Lansing reported on a phone call he received yesterday from the Air Marshals informing him that as of January 1, 2018, they will no longer have funding to pay for security at the Airport. This is not specific to Tompkins County; this is a national issue as the notice is being given to all airports. Mr. Robison said security has been provided at the Airport since the terrorist attack on 9/11. It started out being fully funded by the federal government but has progressively declined. The Sheriff's Office bills the Airport for the actual hours that personnel works (16 hours/day, 7 days/week). Last year the Airport was billed $267,117 for the service and of that amount the Department was reimbursed $110,000. He said this is another unfunded mandate that will create a budget gap and raises questions such as whether other models for security should be explored and how much of a mandate is it and is the County required to have a security presence at the Airport. Prior to 9/11 there was no security and no TSA (Transportation Security Administration) at airports.

Mr. Lansing clarified that TSA employees will still be at the Airport, this applies to law enforcement at the Airport. Mr. Dennis suggested the Sheriff develop and propose a plan to the Legislature to fill the gap. Mr. McKenna said this is new information and suggested giving some time to give this thought and to see if anything new develops.

Mr. John asked what policing events have happened at the Airport and what the response time would be from the Sheriff's Department if not on-site. Mr. Lansing said there have been very few incidents; although there have been some arrests the charges are not serious in nature. Mr. Robison said there can also be discussion of whether security needs to be on-site but having law enforcement on-site does serve as a deterrent. Mr. John agreed with Mr. McKenna's suggestion to give this time.

The Committee encouraged the Sheriff to reach out to federal representatives to discuss this and share concerns and will continue to discuss this at the December meeting.

Ms. Kelles arrived at this time.