September 22, 2020 Police Commission Meeting
Rondout Municipal Center
2:35 p.m. Meeting called to Order
Pledge of Allegiance: Supervisor Walsh
PRESENT: Supervisor Walsh, Commissioner Hafner, Commissioner Stenta, Chief Schaffrick, Councilman Matt Igoe (via Zoom) Marc Cassidy (of the Police Reform Committee via Zoom); Jill LaFera Supervisor Walsh made a motion to approve the minutes from June 23, 2020; 2nd by Commissioner Stenta. Roll Vote: 3 yes.
Body Cameras – Chief Schaffrick stated that the grant for the body worn cameras was on hold due to COVID-19 and the $8,000.00 grant has to be completed by the Fall of 2021. Chief Schaffrick attended a national meeting last month and has met all of the requirements for the grant. Chief Schaffrick stated that he is working on getting the new Server updated and is working with New York State Police and BOCES to either do a physical server in the building or a remote server through BOCES.
Station Computers – The Police Department needs to replace 2 computers.
7F364 – Has developed a transmission issue and is not properly operating and this vehicle is slated to be replaced by an electric vehicle through a Grant from Senator Metzger’s office.
7F363 – There was a problem with the voltage and the modem and SIM card and they have been fixed.
7F362 and 7F365 – Both have no issues at this time.
Chief discussed the Grant application for the electric car.
DWI – Chief Schaffrick stated that the NYS budget has changed due to COVID-19. Chief Schaffrick requested for DWI patrol for 2021 the amount of $5,000.00 and was awarded $2,000. He stated that the Rosendale Police Department is the only agency in Ulster County that maintained same number of DWI arrests regardless of funding.
DWI Crackdown – The department has been awarded $2,100.00. Around July, 2020 the department was awarded an additional $1,000.00 this year. For Labor Day weekend, the department along with the Ulster County Sheriff’s Office conducted a Road Check on State Route 32 at the Recreation Center and it was successful.
Grants – Chief Schaffrick applied and received the following Grants:
NYS Governor Traffic Safety Committee in the amount of $2,850.00 to conduct enforcement patrols along State Route 32 in Maple Hill to the Town of Ulster Line. Chief Schaffrick will be meeting with NYS DOT, Ulster County Highway Department to discuss the number of accidents along Route 32 and signage in that area.
Chief Schaffrick stated that in the beginning of summer there was another drowning in High Falls and both he and Officer Nicholas Lent responded to the Rondout Creek on Bruceville Road for the drowning/ rescue which was then a recovery. Central Hudson responded and there was discussions about the concerns in that area and Central Hudson have come up with solutions for that area.
Chief Schaffrick reported that there were 4,190 calls for service to date and of that number there are 165 cases opened which are either criminal or needed investigation; 85 arrests to date. COVID-19 has had an impact on our department. Last year for 2019, our numbers to date were 3,370 calls for service; 228 cases and 170 arrests. Calls for service are up this year and with COVID this year, there were increased property checks which were approximately 1,000 of them. Last year for 2019, at this time, the number of accidents was 131 and this year to date there have been 44 accidents. The department had 22 Pause Complaints and the Chief discussed the process of the Pause Complaints. Last year at this time, 639 tickets were issued and for 2020 to date, there have been 318 traffic tickets issued.
Chief Schaffrick discussed Mental Hygiene Law and the local treatment center being moved to Westchester County. That the police officers responding to medical calls the Ulster County Mobil Mental Health is now called to assist. Chief Schaffrick stated he was concerned with Unattended Deaths in the community. The Chief stated that people in the community are not being checked on and maybe neighbors could be checking on each other. Supervisor Walsh asked if there are any programs for this and stated maybe the Rosendale Senior Clubs can get involved to check on the elderly/home bound. Both Commissioners asked if Chief could post on the Town’s website and Police Department’s Facebook page about checking on neighbors.
Chief Schaffrick discussed a few of the incidents and arrests that the department has had and discussed the department’s use of force protocol.
Chief Schaffrick stated that the Community Police Reform Committee starting meeting and the Chief upgraded the Personnel Complaints and Commendation Form. The forms are on the Town Website and outside the Police Department.
Chief Schaffrick has received several FOIL Requests for police personnel records. He is in the process of getting those records together 50+ years and 25+ years. Chief Schaffrick attended a training last week regarding Civil Rights Law 50-A.
Resignations – Anthony LaRocca was hired to attend Phase II but he needed to leave for family emergency and he submitted a letter of resignation. The Chief would like to have him reappointed at the October Town Board meeting. Supervisor Walsh made a motion to accept the resignation of Anthony LaRocca, 2nd by Commissioner Stenta. Roll Vote: 3 Yes.
James Algarin works full time at SUNY Ulster. He submitted his resignation effective September 17, 2020. Supervisor Walsh made a motion to accept the resignation of James Algarin, 2nd by Commissioner Hafner. Roll Vote: 3 Yes
New Hires: Chief Schaffrick stated that Nolan Secreto is a part time Police Officer in the Town of Ulster and was hired on August 12, 2020. Supervisor Walsh made a motion to confirm the hiring of Nolan Secreto, 2nd by Commissioner Stenta. Roll Vote: 3 Yes.
Promotions: Chief Schaffrick stated that he had previously spoken to Supervisor Walsh and to each of the Commissioners to promote Officer Robert Fischer to Investigator on September 2, 2020. Supervisor Walsh made a motion to confirm the promotion of Officer Robert Fischer to Investigator; 2nd by Commissioner Stenta. Roll Vote: 3 Yes.
Chief Schaffrick stated that he had met with the Ulster County District Attorney, Ulster County Sheriff, and all of the Police Chiefs of Ulster County to support DA Clegg on his press conference of the safety of police officers and discussed some incidents regarding local Police Officers.
Training: Cycle 3 Training is starting next week for the Police Department.
Chief Schaffrick stated that the Community Police Reform Committee has been meeting and that the department’s policy and procedures are through Lexipol and the committee are reviewing them.
Supervisor Walsh made a motion to go into Executive Session to discuss the employment of a particular person; 2nd by Commissioner Hafner. Roll Vote: 3 Yes
Executive Session ended at 4:25 p.m. with no decision made on anything at this time.
Supervisor Walsh made a motion to adjourn at 4:26 p.m.; 2nd by Commissioner Stenta. Roll Vote: 3 yes.
Deputy Town Clerk