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Deputies will continue patroling western townships despite budget cuts, sheriff says

Posted at 3:32 PM, Dec 13, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-14 01:33:28-05

CINCINNATI — Hamilton County deputies will continue to patrol in townships that are unable to pay for the service despite budget cuts, Sheriff Jim Neil said Thursday.

The sheriff's office budget is being cut by about $5.5 million for 2019, according to Neil. He said deputies will still patrol in Whitewater Township, Harrison Township and Crosby Township despite reports that patrols there were being eliminated -- however, response times may be slightly longer than the current 12-15 minutes.

"It makes you feel rotten because you want to protect the people," Harrison Township trustee Tom Losekamp said.

Neil's statement came after Hamilton County commissioners approved a $239.2 million 2019 budget Wednesday. According to a summary from Commissioner Denise Driehaus, it's $18 million under what county department directors said they needed to continue this year's service levels.

Driehaus said the cuts were necessary as a response to a $29 million deficit cause by ongoing cuts from the state.