Niagara Gazette — Members of the Niagara Falls City Council are being asked to approve a $200,000 transfer of funds in the city budget to cover “unexpected and unbudgeted overtime and related expenses” for the Falls Police Department.
The request, from Mayor Paul Dyster and Police Superintendent Bryan DalPorto will be considered by the council at its meeting tonight.
In a letter to council members, outlining the needs for the fund transfers, DalPorto lists four primary reasons why the department is running low in its overtime budget line.
The superintendent has requested $75,000 to cover unanticipated overtime tied to the severe winter weather.
In particular, DalPorto noted the need for “traffic direction and accident response” created by the bad weather.
“We had some bad storms, and just like (the Department of Public Works) we had costs that ate up our overtime (budget),” DalPorto said. “(Following a sudden warm spell) we had that significant flooding and we had officers stationed (around flood areas) and that is costly.”
The request also asks for $25,000 to assist with costs involved in start-up operations for the city’s Emergency Operations Center, which is located at the Main Street municipal complex that also houses police headquarters and the city courts.
The center, which would serve as a base of operations for all of city government in the event of a major emergency, is not specifically tied to the police department. But DalPorto said police have taken the lead in setting it up because of its location at the municipal complex on Main Street and their experience in dealing with major emergencies.
“What is primarily needed is training to prepare (police officers) to do the set up,” DalPorto said.
The request asks for $50,000 in overtime funding for several joint, large-scale investigations involving Falls police and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the New York State Attorney General’s Office.