The number of Delaware State Troopers assigned to Sussex County will soon increase thanks to a renewed contract agreement between the Delaware State Police and county officials.
Four officers are expected to join the force bringing the total number of troopers in Sussex to 44. Although the additional troopers won’t be hitting the streets until the spring of 2013, officers will get to work at training camp this fall. County offcials made the announcement on Tuesday.
“Our citizens want to feel safe in their communities. They expect that, and they expect government to provide enough police, paramedics, and firefighters to keep their families safe,” said County Council President Michael H. Vincent.
“We value our partnership with the Sussex County Council and appreciate the support of the Council and our State Legislators to afford the DSP with this opportunity for growth.,” added Col. Robert Coupe of the Delaware State Police.
Under the renewed agreement, which resumes terms of a signed 2007 contract, the county will pay for a portion of the salaries of additional troopers. The contract also required four troopers to be added to the force every year, but in 2009 that came to a stop when county and state officials decided to delay the process due to the sluggish economy.
The partnership between Sussex County and the state of Delaware has been around since the 1990’s, which makes the process of increasing troopers in the county more cost efficient for the county and state to share the costs.
Rep. Ruth Briggs King of Georgetown, who’s also a member of the Delaware General Assembly’s Joint Finance Committee, brought the issue to light during this year’s budget negotiations, calling for a reinstatement of the previous cost-share agreement.
“For a number of months now, I have heard personally from constituents about their concerns over the need for a larger police presence in our area,” Rep. Briggs King said. “I could not agree more. It was an honor to be part of this process.”