DEMAREST, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – There’s no official word on whether the Demarest police department will merge with Bergen County Police, but the idea apparently has some key support.

WCBS 880’s Jim Smith On The Story

Demarest Mayor Ray Cywinski says folding local policing into the county force makes financial sense.

“The annual savings to Demarest would be in the order of $400,000 a year,” the mayor told WCBS 880 reporter Jim Smith.

Talks have been ongoing since March and residents will weigh in with a non-binding referendum on Election Day.

Cywinski says all 13 local officers would still be retained by the county.

“The officers will still be stationed in Demarest. They’re not coming from another town,” he said.

He said, for residents, it really doesn’t matter what uniform police wear or who signs the paycheck.

“They just want to call 911 and know that somebody’s going to be there in a very short time,” he said.

Policing in Bergen County has been a hot issue. The county force was almost dissolved recently, but freeholders shot down a merger plan with the sheriff.

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