PEMBROKE — The Pembroke Police Department will get three new patrol cars.
The Pembroke Town Council on Monday voted unanimously to amend the town’s fiscal year 2017-2017 budget to spend $81,000 on three 2016 Dodge Chargers, doing so with assurances the town is in good shape financially. The vehicles will cost $23,650 each. An additional $10,000 was allocated to equip the cars for police work.
“They’ve got to have the equipment to do their job, and they have to have top-notch equipment,” said Councilman Larry McNeill, a former campus officer for The University of North Carolina at Pembroke. “I’m 100 percent behind this.”
The vehicles will be bought from Butler Dodge of Beaufort, S.C.
The department normally operates with 15 officers, with each officer having a patrol car. Two cars have been out of service for more than two years because repairs to them would cost more than the value of the cars, Police Chief Grant Florita said. A third vehicle has more than 130,000 miles on it and a deteriorating transmission.
Town Manager Tyler Thomas said the town is in good financial shape, and advised council that a reimbursement from the Federal Emergency Management Agency of $150,000 to $200,000 is expected and a recent adjustment to an existing park loan will save the town an estimated $30,000 per year.
“All of these changes give me increasing comfort and assurance in requesting this level of appropriation from the board,” Thomas said in a letter to the board.
In other business:
— Councilman Channing Jones told the board it should consult with the company working on branding for the town to ensure all town images have a uniform look and design.
— The council appointed Elliot Lowry and Shaun Barefoot to the Recreation Board. The board, which can have up to 12 members, is operating with six people.
— Recreation Director Phillip Harper, Holiday Inn owner James Chavis and Lumbee Regional Development Association Executive Director James Hardin were all confirmed for three-year terms on the Tourism Development Board.
— A public hearing will be held March 6 regarding changes to the town’s Uniform Development Ordinance. Adding assembly halls and special events as conditional uses for certain commercial property will be discussed.
Reach Mike Gellatly at 910-816-1989 or via Twitter @MikeGellatly