POLK CITY, Iowa–City leaders in Polk City are looking at options when it comes to the town’s public safety.
Earlier this week a committee was appointed by the Mayor to look at several public safety options.
Those include getting rid of the police department and outsourcing to the Polk County Sheriff’s Office, keeping or expanding the force or another idea entirely.
“That`s what the committee is tasked with is taking a look at the options that are out there and put together a report back to the council,” says City Administrator for Polk City Gary Mahannah.
Mahannah says talks of a committee started when officials found out the police chief would be retiring this month.
The city is also growing. The population in Polk City has doubled since 2010 and Mahannah says it was time to look at how the city can best serve its citizens.
“I think any prudent person would ask that question what is the best option for us. What do we want to look like as we go down the road? What does 2025 look like? What does 2030 look like?”
Currently, the Polk City Police Department has four full-time officers and a supervisor.
Some officers told Channel 13 off camera there has been no communication between them and city officials and they’re worried for their jobs.
The Teamsters Local 238 confirmed the officers have started the process to form a union.
Residents say they’re glad city leaders are looking at all the options but are hopeful eliminating the police force doesn’t come out on top.
“I can see the challenges of not having it here. They`re in our neighborhood a lot, I see them patrol our neighborhood a lot and that makes us feel safe knowing that they`re there,” says Polk City Resident Liz Henderson.
There is no timeline of when the committee will come back with its recommendation.
A union representative said he doesn’t believe the committee forming is in retaliation to officers inquiring about a union because preliminary conversations were in the works before officers looked into it.