Batesville considers creating town police force

With Batesville’s population climbing to almost 10,000, local officials are considering the possibility of creating a police force for the town, reports the Associated Press. The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports that since 1982, Independence County sheriff’s deputies have patrolled Batesville as part of an “interlocal” agreement that costs the city $1.2 million annually. Two of the county’s 11 deputies are inside Batesville at all times.

Chuck Lang, the director of the Arkansas Sheriffs’ Association, says Batesville is the only town of its size in the state that uses county deputies to patrol its borders.

Mayor Rick Elumbaugh says that in January, city council members will discuss creating a police force. If the cost of doing so is much more than $1.2 million, he says the idea may be shelved.

Elumbaugh says he favors the idea.

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