Teen Excellence Warren County Memories book

Editorial: ‘Price was right’ not good enough answer

2013-09-13T22:57:00Z 2013-09-14T22:40:31Z Editorial: ‘Price was right’ not good enough answer Glens Falls Post-Star
September 13, 2013 10:57 pm

You can’t argue with the price.

For $10, the Warren County Sheriff’s Office has been able to acquire four vehicles for its Emergency Response Team. They include:

u A mine-resistant ambush protected armored vehicle.

u Two military-style humvees.

u And a former Brinks armored car that has been retrofitted to accommodate the 13-person response team.

The Sheriff’s Office would argue it is prepared for any emergency.

We would agree, and include an invasion from a foreign country among the scenarios.

The sheriff argued all monies spent on the vehicles, now and in the future, will come out of drug forfeitures, and will not cost taxpayers one penny. The drug money can only be used toward drug enforcement.

Considering the terrorist-driven world in which we live, we suppose this is a prudent course of action, but we still wonder if the cost of upkeep, training and use of these vehicles is the best way to spend the drug forfeiture money.

These new vehicles do come with a future cost — gasoline, upkeep, maintenance and maybe training — even if the bills are paid from drug forfeitures.

We are proud our region has a very low incidence of violent crime and almost no random acts of violence. We can’t think of one previous incident in which a mine-resistant ambush-protected armored vehicle would have come in handy.

While it is always a possibility the need may arise, the State Police has an emergency response team in Albany that would be available.

There is also some symbolism to consider. Seeing these armored vehicles in our beautiful small towns gives us, and we suspect the local citizenry, an uneasy feeling that we are evolving into a military state.

These are scary-looking vehicles designed for scary situations. This is not Baghdad.

We wonder if the money seized from drug dealers should be going into drug treatment and prevention programs in which law enforcement is more accessible and approachable than when driving an armored vehicle. Perhaps it could

be used for more programs to steer youngsters away from drugs.

We also worry about the precedent this sets. It seems only a matter of time before Saratoga and Washington Counties will also be asking for the latest in equipment for their own emergency response teams.

It reminds us of the debate over equipment for local volunteer fire departments in recent years.

While it would be nice for every local fire company to have a $1 million ladder truck, or a boat with rescue capability, is it really necessary if there are already resources available?

Despite some of the horrific events that have happened around the country, violent crime continues to drop nationally and we certainly don’t see any increase locally.

It does not appear anyone stopped and asked a very simple question: Are these vehicles absolutely necessary for the safety and security of the people of Warren County?

Just because the price was right is not a good enough answer.

Local editorials represent the opinion of The Post-Star editorial board, which consists of Publisher Rick Emanuel, Editor Ken Tingley, Projects Editor Will Doolittle and citizen representative Vincent Palacino

Copyright 2015 Glens Falls Post-Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(9) Comments

  1. theMaven
    Report Abuse
    theMaven - September 14, 2013 8:02 pm
    So an old brinks truck will get them there faster?
    What, will the MRAP bash in the glass Mall doors and.....eer, what will it do then?

    Real advanced tactics, the brain trust up on route 9 should have a field day.

    Now if they were to equip a platoon of quad 50's,
    then buy a half dozen dusters, maybe even a few Huey gunships or the like,
    now we'd have a tactical hand up,
    of course a slew of citizens would get cut to shreds
    in any imaginable scenario,
    but like Iraq, some citizens have to die for a greater good.

    Yeah, and by the way,
    the real military are not beholding to whatever political hacks hold office
    locally, esp the elected police officials.

    BIG difference!
  2. theMaven
    Report Abuse
    theMaven - September 14, 2013 7:53 pm
    ".....an uneasy feeling that we are evolving into a military state....."

    What do you mean evolving?

    the gov searches our telephones and emails when they want, they monitor our journalists, they limit our rights to have weapons to defend ourselves, they search us, bully us, abuse us physically and verbally, and our only recourse is to beg them to investigate themselves.

    Call it a military state, authoritarian state, police state, but the uniformed tail, is wagging the citizen/dog.

    I can see these yahoos responding to a call in these overkillmobiles, they can't safely drive the vehicles they already have, they'll mow down everyone in their way.

    All the drug dealers will need is a vehicle that can do 65, they will be invulnerable.

    Why not use the drug money for an M-1 Abrams tank,
    maybe a few 155SP's, a couple of 8 inchers on trackks
    and a platoon of APC's;
    that will make any unruly citizens think twice about asserting their
    once God given rights.
    Report Abuse
    IWILLNOTCOMPLY - September 14, 2013 6:23 pm
    The Boston bombing should be a very big wake up call for us all.How many of their constitutional rights were thrown away looking for the one man? They declared marshal law and told everyone to stay indoors. Then they went house to house and did illegal searches of peoples homes, don't give the line they asked to enter. There were plenty of pictures of people on their porches with their hands in the air.
    Think about it 2 men forced what a million or more people to be locked in their homes and what message did that send to terrorists?
    We do not need and WE should not stand for our police becoming a para-military group.How many times in the last 20 years was there even a remote chance of needing this kind of equipment?
    Crime stats have been showing a decrease over the years and the police want to act like its war on the streets!
    More and more we are being programed to accept giving up our freedom for security and how long before we become a police state?
  4. Bingo
    Report Abuse
    Bingo - September 14, 2013 2:06 pm
    Just wait until Bill de Blasio takes over as mayor for New York. You'll see what happens to a city when the far-left runs it. (Will Doolittle is on the record espousing pro-Blasio police tactics such as ending stop-and-frisk.)
    New York is the now the safest city in the world, an almost unimaginable fact mere decades ago. But Giuliani and Bloomberg have cleaned it up so well that a whole generation isn't even aware of the city's past, where one couldn't even walk around without fear of being killed or mugged.

    What does that have to do with this piece? Everything. This editorial includes: potshots at anti-terrorism, a denial that random acts of violence occur in the area, and a petulant hint of America as a police state (as if the psychotics who would think that should affect Warren County's decision making).

    I wonder if the Post-Star realizes that crime in New York City didn't go down by itself. It went down because of better policing. Something de Blasio will reverse. Just watch.
  5. mr giggles
    Report Abuse
    mr giggles - September 14, 2013 12:32 pm
    I have to agree with the Post Star on this one. Now that the Cops have voiced their opinion on here -let me as a veteran and tax paying citizen voice my opinion. Why doesn't the county use our taxmoney on outreach programs and portraying themselves as approachable as humble servants of our community like they should be instead of making themselves a para -military organization with new toys they can parade around in . Theirs a reason we grow up around here scared of or hating cops and this mentality is just getting worse. We as citizens need more "To protect and serve "attitude and less of this ignorant look how badass we are attitude.
  6. shamrock_PI
    Report Abuse
    shamrock_PI - September 14, 2013 10:16 am
    Well if you recall the little towns in Connecticut and Colorado where those tragic school shootings took place didn't have a high violent crime rate either.
    Report Abuse
    BAYRIDGEEMS - September 14, 2013 8:47 am
    Its about quick response times. Saving lives thats why these guys got these. Yeah do they make you wonder why they have them sure. But if this was truly a Military state guess what the armory is only over on Queensbury avenue and they have bigger things then an old beat up armored car two humvees and a MRAP
    Report Abuse
    BAYRIDGEEMS - September 14, 2013 8:45 am
    this is dumb. Do you how long it takes the ERT in Albany to get here just travel time 1 hour and then it usually takes them another hour to and hour and a half to get ready for travel. So why shouldnt we have one. If you inside the mall and there was crazed gunmen that locked all the exits and took you hostage you would want that ERT there ASAP. Guess what right now as it stands Warren County ERT probably takes 30 mins to get ready and down to the mall. Why would a fire department need a million dollar ladder truck or a fire boat if the resources were avaiable? Really! So when your house burns down because that company couldnt get a ladder truck there quick enough to put out your chimney fire....but hey the resource was available to them thats why they didnt get it. A rescue boat eh they dont need one there is one in Corinth.. Until your the person with a capsizing vessal or almost going over the dam. But hey they dont need one the resource is available to them.
  9. Old School FF
    Report Abuse
    Old School FF - September 14, 2013 2:38 am
    " The drug money can only be used toward drug enforcement." So if that is true, which it most likely is with the way our stupid laws and rules are written, then these vehicles can only be used for drug related crimes? That narrows their usage way, way down. I suppose now that if they have a barricaded suspect, they will have to find some excuse related to illegal drugs before they can deploy these military assault vehicles. Who's brilliant idea was it to use seized money from illegal drug activity only on other drug enforcement operations? Isn't that an admission that we have lost the "war on drugs" and will perpetually need more money to fight it? Even if it can only be used for drug enforcement, it would be better to spend it on the daily operations of the drug investigators and relieve some of the burden on the Taxpayers for that part of the Sheriff's budget. I hope everyone remembers this fiasco come election time.


1) Comments must be contained to the topic of the articles only. Comments that stray from the direct subject of the article will be deleted.

2) Readers are free to comment on and debate other readers' comments, but comments must specifically address the issue(s) raised. Comments containing personal insults directed toward another reader in any form will be deleted.

3) Comments must be civil in tone, and there will be no name calling of any kind. Uncivil or inappropriate comments will be deleted, as will any comment containing profanities.

4) Comments critical of crime or accident victims will be deleted.

5) Comments that are potentially libelous, including those that contain accusations not supported by facts, will be deleted.

Commenters who abuse these policies will have their e-mail registrations revoked.


View the full commenting policy.

Thank you, and we hope you enjoy interacting with us and the community.

Add Comment
You must Login to comment.

Click here to get an account it's free and quick