Southold Police Chief Martin Flatley said several members of the department have expressed interest in leading the accreditation process.
“We are currently trying to get them into an accreditation workshop the state offers,” he said Tuesday during the Southold Town Board’s work session.
The town police department is the only one in Suffolk County that hasn’t been accredited through the state program.
Chief Flatley updated the Town Board on the accreditation process along with John Slattery, chair of the town’s police advisory committee.
The workshop would take place in early 2018 and Chief Flatley said he would try to send at least two people. He said he’s still unsure how the manpower issue would be resolved, because it requires the participation of a full-time person with a rank of sergeant or above who can rewrite rules and procedures.
“Dedicating a sergeant to this is very expensive, but to me it’s very important,” Councilman Jim Dinizio said.
Accreditation takes about a year or two, but after that there is maintenance that needs to be done every year in order to maintain that status, according to Chief Flatley.
“There are standards that we should be meeting that we may not be, and we will find out from this,” Mr. Dinizio said.
Chief Flatley said that with the limited number of sergeants in the department, that position will need to be replaced if one is focusing solely on accreditation. The manpower may not be the only expense.
“Headquarters was built in back in the mid-’60s,” he said. “I’m sure our detention facilities and other parts of the headquarters are probably not going to be what the accreditation process is looking for, so there may be other financial considerations.”