Saginaw police proposal tabled until city council weighs in

Talks to outsource police services to the county sheriff in Saginaw are tabled for now.

Saginaw Assistant City Manager Phil Ludos is asking the county to consider taking over police operations in light of a $3.2 million budget shortfall for the 2013-2014 fiscal year. Ludos says without a deal, he would be forced resort to layoffs, and the city would have to operate with 55 police officers and 35 firefighters.

On Wednesday Ludos presented to the Courts and Public Safety Committee of the commission a proposal that involves the Saginaw Co. Sheriff managing a force of about 80 officers in the city.

That's almost 30 fewer bodies Sheriff William Federspiel originally proposed, but, Ludos says, itâ??s a the figure the city can sustain.

â??I think we've found our middle ground in this, that we both can be content and obviously there's labor issues so we'll address those as we need to,â?? Ludos said.

The sheriff, however, has concerns its not enough to police a city as large as Saginaw.

â??I will never enter into a contract unless I think the model will be successful, and at this point Iâ??ve said no to a contract because I don't believe that I'm in any position to negotiate a contract,â?? Sheriff Federspiel said.

The Courts and Public Safety Committee decided to table Ludos' proposal until next month's committee meeting, when newly-elected commissioners are present.

Ludos, in the meantime, will present the plan to city council in a special meeting next week.