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Nassau County Postpones Closing Baldwin Police Precinct

Nassau County police cruiser (credit: Mona Rivera/1010 WINS/File)

Nassau County police cruiser (credit: Mona Rivera/1010 WINS/File)

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BALDWIN, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) – The final consolidation of Nassau County’s police precincts has been postponed indefinitely.

It’s possible that merging the Baldwin-based First Precinct into the Seaford-based Seventh Precinct may never happen as planned, officials said.

They’re reconsidering how policing on the South Shore should be managed after the Seventh Precinct building got flooded during Superstorm Sandy.

First Deputy Commissioner Thomas Krumpter told Newsday it was possible the South Shore would be realigned among three precincts rather than two. He said construction of a new building at a better location also was possible.

Nassau Police Union president James Carver has praised County Executive Ed Mangano’s decision not to go through with the final of four police precinct mergers.

“And we believe not merging the First and the Seventh is a step in the right direction. And hopefully going forward, they’ll see about the other precincts and realize that maybe that wasn’t the right thing, either,” Carver told WCBS 880 Long Island Bureau Chief Mike Xirinachs. “It’s about getting right, not about who’s right. It’s about getting it right.”

Carver added it is not too late to correct what he called the problems caused by the precinct mergers. But he said time is running out.

“Between the precinct mergers and the diminished ranks, we are seeing a public safety crisis,” Carver said.

The decision to postpone the merger was made by police commissioner and county executive last week.

The original plan called for eight precincts to be consolidated into four, with the closed precincts converted into “community policing centers” with reduced staff and responsibilities.

The centers have up to 10 officers on duty — including supervisors, detectives, and both desk and response officers — but do not handle arrests.

County Executive Mangano said last year that the plan was expected to save $20 million annually.

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)