Gonzales council drops budget ax on police again
GONZALES - A day after the council decided to amend the budget for a third time, cutting out funding to the police department, Chief of Police Sherman Jackson defended his request for more than $400,000.
"I think they're out of touch, one of them asked me if I think Gonzales is safe, yeah I think Gonzales is safe, I think my family could walk down any street in Gonzales, however, it's up to me and this department to take proactive measures to keep this city safe," said Jackson.
Three councilmen, Terance Irvin, Timothy Vessel and Gary Lacombe, voted to cut more than $100,000 from the budget, which would prevent the police department from getting the 9 police cruisers they want.
"It's their office, that's what they work out of and they depend on that car to get them from point A to point B and sometimes people's lives depend on us responding so I think it's necessary and it's a high priority," said Jackson.
Other councilmen, including Kenny Matassa and Kirk Boudreaux agree it's time to pay up for protection.
"Chief does a great job, our police department does a great job, I support them 100 percent and we do have the money to do what he needs done and public safety to me is my main priority," said Kirk Boudreaux.
News 2 attempted to reach out to each of the three councilmen who opposed the funding, but did not get any response from two, Timothy Vessel hung up the phone when he learned who was calling him.