“Small towns are dissolving their police departments in greater numbers, and the borough of Wilkinsburg is the latest to consider it.”
“Officer Brad Kaiser of the Ohio Township Police Department patrols on Neville Road in Neville Township. The Ohio Township Police Department is contracted to police seven neighboring communities, including Neville Township.” (Photo by Connor Mulvaney/PublicSource)
By Christing Managnas | Public Source | January 10, 2016
“Decades ago, businesses and residents flocked to Wilkinsburg. It was an upscale area with little trouble. Today, the main streets of the downtrodden borough still wear the remnants of the boom; crime is steady and money is harder to come by for not only the residents, but also local government.
“Lined with many vacant storefronts, most people use the borough’s stretch of Penn Avenue only as a thoroughfare. Wood Street is checkered with boarded windows, and the names of former businesses linger — Mel’s Shoe Repair, the African Store, an old sweet shop.
“In this financially distressed town, consolidation has become a common term.
“Wilkinsburg has relied on the City of Pittsburgh for fire coverage since 2011 and, beginning next school year, Pittsburgh schools also will host Wilkinsburg’s middle and high school students.
“Next, the police force for this 2.3-square-mile town could be defunded and consolidated.”