During a public meeting Tuesday night, the Mocksville Town Board made the difficult decision by unanimous vote to dissolve the Mocksville Police Department and to sign a three-year contract with the Davie County Sheriff’s Department to provide all law enforcement services.

Mocksville Town Manager Ken Gamble said that while the decision was extremely hard, it was necessary.

“The decision to contract with the Davie County Sheriff’s Office is a business decision that the Town believes is in the best long-term interests of the residents of Mocksville. We understand that contracting with the DCSO means that MPD staff positions will be eliminated, and we know this will be extremely disruptive to our employees and their families. Unfortunately, this action was necessary to address skyrocketing costs, a shrinking fund balance, and an inefficient policing model,” said Gamble.

“Some people are saying that Mocksville is “defunding” the police. This is not true. “Defund the police” is a slogan that supports divesting funds from police departments and reallocating them to non-policing forms of public safety and community support, such as social services, youth services, housing, education, and healthcare. The contract with DCSO will increase, not decrease, the number of officers working the street at a significant savings to the community.”

Gamble explained that the fiscal year 2021-22 general fund budget includes a significant drop in sales tax revenues ($260,000) and a significant increase in landfill and recycling fees ($347,000). “The resulting $607,000 in ongoing liabilities were the major reason for seeking a creative long term solution that enhances community safety while generating significant savings for future community investments without resorting to a tax increase.”

“The contract with DCSO will increase, not decrease, the number of officers working the street at a significant savings to the community.” ~ Mocksville Town Manager, Ken Gamble

Additionally, the Town of Mocksville Fund Balance, which is essentially its savings account, is also used to cover cash flow issues during the first six months of the budget of each year (July – December) to supplement operational costs, since most of the property tax revenues are received in January of the following year. This year, the projected Fund Balance on July 1 will be less than July – December expenses, which is not a sustainable trend.

Third, the traditional municipal policing model is inefficient. Both the Davie County Sheriff’s Office and Mocksville Police Department are expending tax dollars to duplicate management, supervision, investigations, crime scene services and other support functions.

He assures Mocksville residents that they will not experience a decrease in law enforcement protection. In fact, the contract increases “boots on the ground” street-level coverage by 75%.

“Sheriff’s deputies already work in Mocksville. The proposed contract will provide on average 3 ½ deputies on patrol around the clock in the Town. The Mocksville Police Department (MPD) routinely averages 2 officers on patrol. The net result is that the Town will have more law enforcement officers on patrol than the MPD now provides for less money.”

“The reason this works is because the DCSO will use their existing leadership and supervisory personnel, detective division, evidence management and other support services to serve the deputies assigned to Mocksville. Even if the Town had decided to cut existing staffing at the MPD to a bare minimum (14 Patrol Officers / 1 Chief / 1 Captain / 1 Detective / 1 Property Technician / 1 Records Clerk) it would still take $1.8M to equal the coverage the DCSO contract offered”

The contract increases “boots on the ground” street-level coverage by 75%.

In addition to having more officers on the street the DCSO will add additional staffing if the Town experiences a crime “surge” this could be more uniformed deputies, undercover surveillance or detectives. These resources would not be available without the contract.

Highlights of the contract: 

  • $1,350,000 annual fee covers all expenses (proposed MPD budget for FY21-22 is $1.9 million)
  • Saves the Town $1.3 million over the three-year contract term
  • Transfers existing vehicles and equipment to the Davie County Sheriff’s Office (DCSO)
  • Eliminates duplication of services in investigations, management, and support services
  • Uses resources more effectively and efficiently through data-driven “smart policing”

The DCSO currently has a contract in place with the Town of Bermuda Run. Similarly, the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office has several contracts with Forsyth County towns for law enforcement services, as do other Sheriff’s offices across the state. The DCSO will work with the MPD during the transition phase, and all officers employed by the MPD have been invited to apply for employment with the Sheriff’s office.

Gamble pointed out that the Town already contracts with Davie County for services including planning and zoning, tax collection, library and information technology. “The regional water treatment plant being built in Cooleemee is a great example of how we can accomplish much more as a team than we ever can alone. “

For additional information read or download the Advantages of the Contract and Q&A provided by Town Manager Ken Gamble.


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