Powell City Council member Don Grubbs has introduced a resolution to "reject the disbanding of the city of Powell police department and its assimilation by the Delaware County Sheriff's office."

Powell City Council member Don Grubbs has introduced a resolution to "reject the disbanding of the city of Powell police department and its assimilation by the Delaware County Sheriff's office."

Grubbs' resolution will be on council's March 1 agenda. Grubbs provided copies of the resolution to fellow council members at their Feb. 15 meeting, but not in time for it to get on that meeting's agenda.

The resolution references council member Sara Marie Brenner's Feb. 8 presentation to an unofficial citizens advisory committee, in which consolidating the police department was mentioned as one of a number of ways city services could consolidate or privatize.

The committee has met three times since Nov. 30. The next meeting, which is anticipated to be the last, will be at 7 p.m. March 8, in council chambers, 47 Hall St.

The group was organized by Brenner as a way to find funds for such capital improvements as roads, sewers and sidewalks.

This approach is an alternative to the income tax increase city voters rejected on Nov. 2. The proposed increase would have generated funds for capital improvements.

Brenner helped a group of residents called Friends of Powell campaign against the increase. She said the city should find the money by trimming its operating budget and using bond issues that are project-specific and eventually would expire. An income tax increase would be permanent.

Discussions about trimming the city's operating budget by downsizing staff or outsourcing services prompted loud remarks by those at the meeting. City council members, residents and city staffers attended.

Brenner's Feb. 8 presentation looked at outsourcing ideas for every city department. They included combining the police department with the Delaware County sheriff's office. Many among the audience voiced objections.

The ideas from the presentation are to be wrapped up at the March 8 meeting and presented in council as ways council could save money that could then be used toward capital improvements.

Grubbs' proposed resolution would halt that process and further discussion by removing Brenner's ideas regarding the police department from consideration.

"This is an important one, I think, and should be taken off the table," Grubbs said.

Brenner had said that the $2.3-million cost of the Powell police department could be cut by $1.5-million by consolidating with the sheriff's department and contracting for deputies, similar to Orange Township's eight-year contract with the sheriff's department. Orange Township pays the deputies wages and some of the overtime, and sheriff Walter Davis pays for training, equipment and other costs.

Residents present at the Feb. 8 meeting said consolidating with the sheriff's department wouldn't be a true savings because the county would be picking up roughly 50 percent of the law enforcement cost for the city.