Chief says selling used weapons to dealer makes upgrade affordable; dispatching switch starts Nov. 1
The Saukville Police Department will be upgrading its handgun arsenal at what officials are characterizing as a bargain price.
The Village Board has approved replacing the sidearms assigned to each officer with 11 Glock .40 caliber pistols purchased directly from the manufacturer. Each of the new handguns will be equipped with manufacturer-equipped night sights.
Police Chief Jeff Goetz explained that the replacement push was being made because the Trijicon night sights on the current Glock guns are nearing the end of their 10 to 12-year lifespan.
Goetz said the cost of replacing the sights which use radioactive paint would be about $100 a gun.
Along with the handguns, the department also requested buying rail-mounted flashlights that attach to the bottom of each pistol. New holsters were also approved.
“It should be noted that most of our current holsters are in need of repair, and have been breaking on a regular basis due to their age,” Goetz said.
At a cost of $430 per gun, replacing the Glocks will cost $4,750. The flashlights and holsters will add another $2,500 to the outlay.
However, Goetz said, the bottom-line expense will be reduced to about $2,000 by selling the 11 old guns. The department expects to receive $500 for each old gun by selling them to a federally licensed firearms dealer instead of trading them in.
“The old guns are still in great shape. We just saw this upgrade as a way to save taxpayer dollars without hurting the quality of service we provide,” Goetz said.
The original Glocks were purchased in 2004 after much deliberation.
Goetz said the new guns reflect an ongoing effort to upgrade the equipment used in the department. This year, the department bought four ballistic helmets and level-four body armor to be carried in squad cars.
“That was a good start in moving forward to be able to effectively respond to the threats our officers may face,” Goetz said.
“Recent events in this country spanning back 10 years or so have changed the way law enforcement responds to various incidents, as well as changed the equipment utilized to effectively engage a real or perceived threat.”
Another upgrade is expected to be in place Friday, Nov. 1, when the department switches over to the Ozaukee County Sheriff’s Department for dispatching.
The police department office staff will continue to respond to calls asking routine questions during weekdays, but calls asking for an officer to respond will be routed directly to the sheriff’s department.
The change is expected to be seamless, because the sheriff’s department already handles dispatch calls on evenings and weekends. All 911 calls are also routed through the sheriff’s department.
“We don’t expect our residents are going to notice any delay in service when we switch over to the sheriff’s department,” Goetz said.
Eventually, Goetz said, a new digital phone system will allow the office staff to transfer incoming calls to the cell phones officers carry with them.
That change, he said, may not be available for another five weeks because of service delays through AT&T.