Windber Borough Council discussed reinstating its police force during a more than three-hour-long executive session at a regular meeting Tuesday night.
The borough wants to bring back its department Jan. 1, when its current contract with Paint Township expires. The borough calls the move imperative because of financial difficulties the current provider is experiencing.
Council President Barry Jerley said after the executive session that council’s discussion centered mainly on looking for a location for a police station. He said council also discussed the news that all former borough police officers are willing to return to the borough.
He said council is leaning toward hiring Rick Skiles as the police chief and is in the process of finalizing a contract with the veteran law enforcement official. A special meeting will be held soon to do that.
Skiles was Windber’s acting police chief and then took over the reins of the Paint Township department when Paint Township officers started serving Windber.
Jerley said the building council is contemplating for a police station is located at Jefferson Avenue and the 12th Street exit. It would be rented.
Improvements that would be needed to bring the building up to police standards include commercial doors and a secure evidence room, Jerley said.
The borough would be able to reinstate the department at no additional cost to taxpayers, he said.
Frank Sojak is a reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/FrankNews10.