Tioga County’s draft of the Tioga County Police Reform and Reinvention Collaborative Plan has been posted for public comments at www.tiogacountyny.gov. A paper copy of the draft plan is also available in the Legislative Office, located at 56 Main St. in Owego.
According to the Tioga County Legislature, the public is invited to provide input by email or written copy until Feb. 15, 2021 at noon, at which time the public comment period will be closed.
Comments can be sent to PoliceReform@tiogacountyny.gov.
Elements of the county’s plan include further and continued interaction with the communities through events and through presentations, further training in de-escalation and community bias, iPads to communicate with Mental Health personnel on crisis calls, and further training in other various aspects of policing, and to align with New York State’s overall plan.
A zoom meeting held recently to gather comments from the community was useful in gaining ideas to put together the plan, and was a requirement of the process.
In the story printed last week, we pulled quotes from the zoom meeting and condensed them, as the meeting was an hour and a half in length.
The quote printed in our previous story from the sheriff, that was in response to the Black Lives Matter protests and demonstrations that took place last summer, and when resident Irena Theresa Rose Horvatt Raia asked Sheriff Howard about dialogue, should have been written as follows, “[We went by a few times, but having signs that said ‘defund the police’ didn’t make us feel very welcome].”
This was an abbreviated, or summed up response by the sheriff. You can listen to his response in its entirety by viewing the public meeting at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sG9tOFTY5Ps&t=4866s.