December 8, 2008



Consolidating Police services


By: Veronica Rose, Principal Analyst



You want to know (1) if Connecticut General Statutes § 7-148cc allows towns to consolidate their police departments and (2) the procedures for doing so.


Connecticut General Statute § 7-148cc gives towns blanket authority to perform jointly any function that any statute, special act, charter, or home-rule ordinance allows them to perform individually. Although not specified in the law, this includes police protection and police services. Each participant must approve any joint agreement in the same manner it approves (1) ordinances or (2) budgets, if it does not approve ordinances. Any agreement must include (1) a process for withdrawing and (2) a requirement that the approving body review the agreement at least once every five years to assess whether it improves the functions it addresses.


OLR Report 2008-R-0533 discusses other laws that allow towns to form regional entities to provide municipal services or collaborate on different activities without forming a regional entity. This includes CGS § 7-339b et seq., which establishes a process for towns and other municipal bodies to enter into formal interlocal agreements to jointly provide an array of municipal functions and services, including police protection and police services. Under CGS § 7-339b et seq, the local government bodies involved propose an agreement to their respective legislative bodies, which must hold a hearing on the proposal; suggest

changes, if any; and approve or reject the final proposal. The agreement must contain, among other things, provisions on its duration and purpose, method of paying for services, agency indemnification, and dispute resolution.


We have attached (1) a report prepared by representatives of various Minnesota entities on issues to consider when consolidating police departments and (2) a report on consolidating police services prepared by the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP). The latter report discusses seven different ways to consolidate police departments and the issues agencies must consider when considering consolidation.






1.    Combining Police Departments, Issues to Consider (Aug. 2002), prepared by the League of Minnesota Cities, the Minnesota Chiefs of Police Association, the Minnesota Sheriff’s Association, the Minnesota Police and Peace Officers Association, and the Minnesota Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training


2.    Consolidating Police Services, An IACP Planning Approach, May 2003