Dewey Commissioners Promise Change after New Information on Poli - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Dewey Commissioners Promise Change After New Info on Police Department Program

Posted: Jan 15, 2018 4:10 PM Updated:

DEWEY BEACH, Del.- Dewey Beach's new government is taking action after learning of the town's involvement in a federal surplus equipment program for police.

Late last year, the town approved an audit into each town department's finances after an independent investigation into the town manager included a footnote that referred to the Dewey Beach Police Department's involvement in the LESO program as a "slush fund." The program allows local law enforcement to receive federal surplus military equipment. At the time, no one questioned the legality of the program, but rather questioned why some in the town government allegedly weren't aware of it. 

"The previous town administration not only knew about the program since at least 2015, but had used it to their direct benefit, even sadly bartering equipment to demolish the building next to town hall," said Commissioner Paul Bauer. "Additionally, the administration deposited police funds into the general fund of the town which is an egregious offense."

Mayor T.J. Redefer says the town failed to keep an inventory of the equipment purchased through the program, and that stops immediately.

"I totally appreciate people's disappointment and outrage that this has gone on for so long and has not been properly accounted for," he tells WBOC. "What I find powerful is that we can begin again now and do it right."

While Redefer and Bauer say the town failed to keep a record of the inventory, the Dewey Beach Police Department kept a full record of the nearly 500 items. The state coordinator for the LESO program and the Federal Equipment Inventory Program website did so as well. 

Redefer says upon investigation, it makes sense that the police department's sales in the LESO program were in a separate fund, and called the referral of it as a "slush fund" unfortunate.

"The LESO program requires that any sales of their equipment does go for law enforcement, so it was natural for these funds to continue to flow to this restricted account," he explains.

Bauer also lauded the police department's involvement in the LESO program. 

"The LESO program is a very valuable federal program in which thousands of police departments all over the country participate," he says. "It helps our police acquire items they we otherwise could never afford."

For more on the program, click here

  • Delmarvawide NewsDelmarvawide NewsMore>>

  • Delaware's Largest Private Employer Increasing Minimum Wage to $15 Per Hour

    Delaware's Largest Private Employer Increasing Minimum Wage to $15 Per Hour

    Tuesday, December 11 2018 9:12 AM EST2018-12-11 14:12:09 GMT
    Tuesday, December 11 2018 9:12 AM EST2018-12-11 14:12:09 GMT
    Christiana Hospital (Photo: Christiana Care Health System)Christiana Hospital (Photo: Christiana Care Health System)
    Christiana Hospital (Photo: Christiana Care Health System)Christiana Hospital (Photo: Christiana Care Health System)
    Christiana Care Health System, Delaware's largest private employer with nearly 12,000 employees, says it is increasing its minimum wage to $15 an hour.More
    Christiana Care Health System, Delaware's largest private employer with nearly 12,000 employees, says it is increasing its minimum wage to $15 an hour.           More
  • Environmental Groups to Sue Over Offshore Drilling Tests

    Environmental Groups to Sue Over Offshore Drilling Tests

    Tuesday, December 11 2018 8:07 AM EST2018-12-11 13:07:39 GMT
    Tuesday, December 11 2018 8:07 AM EST2018-12-11 13:07:39 GMT
    (Photo: MGN Online)(Photo: MGN Online)
    (Photo: MGN Online)(Photo: MGN Online)
    Environmental groups plan to sue the Trump administration over offshore drilling tests, launching a legal fight against a proposal that has drawn bipartisan opposition along the Atlantic Coast, according to reports.More
    Environmental groups plan to sue the Trump administration over offshore drilling tests, launching a legal fight against a proposal that has drawn bipartisan opposition along the Atlantic Coast, according to reports.More
  • Aquariums Oppose New Rules on Ocean Sound Blasting

    Aquariums Oppose New Rules on Ocean Sound Blasting

    Tuesday, December 11 2018 3:41 AM EST2018-12-11 08:41:58 GMT
    Tuesday, December 11 2018 7:47 AM EST2018-12-11 12:47:38 GMT
    Shot of seagull overlooking Lewes Beach (Source: Amber Muehlemann, WBOC)Shot of seagull overlooking Lewes Beach (Source: Amber Muehlemann, WBOC)
    Shot of seagull overlooking Lewes Beach (Source: Amber Muehlemann, WBOC)Shot of seagull overlooking Lewes Beach (Source: Amber Muehlemann, WBOC)
    A group of aquariums says it's opposed to seismic blasting along the East Coast as part of efforts to extract offshore oil and gas.More
    A group of aquariums says it's opposed to seismic blasting along the East Coast as part of efforts to extract offshore oil and gas.More
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • After Nativity Scene Removal, Rehoboth Beach Considers New Policy

    After Nativity Scene Removal, Rehoboth Beach Considers New Policy

    Monday, December 10 2018 5:26 PM EST2018-12-10 22:26:21 GMT
    Tuesday, December 11 2018 7:40 AM EST2018-12-11 12:40:26 GMT
    Photo courtesy: Patty DerrickPhoto courtesy: Patty Derrick
    Photo courtesy: Patty DerrickPhoto courtesy: Patty Derrick
    After the removal of a nativity scene from city property near the bandstand, the city of Rehoboth Beach is already looking toward next year.More
    After the removal of a nativity scene from city property near the bandstand, the city of Rehoboth Beach is already looking toward next year.More
  • Firefly Music Festival Releases 2019 Lineup

    Firefly Music Festival Releases 2019 Lineup

    Monday, December 10 2018 9:47 PM EST2018-12-11 02:47:25 GMT
    Tuesday, December 11 2018 7:46 AM EST2018-12-11 12:46:08 GMT
    (Photo credit: Firefly Music Festival)(Photo credit: Firefly Music Festival)
    (Photo credit: Firefly Music Festival)(Photo credit: Firefly Music Festival)
    The Firefly Music Festival is one again returning to the Woodlands for it eighth festival-- and Monday, event organizers released the lineup of performers.More
    The Firefly Music Festival is one again returning to the Woodlands for it eighth festival-- and Monday, event organizers released the lineup of performers. More
  • "Baby, It's Cold Outside" Receives Backlash

    "Baby, It's Cold Outside" Receives Backlash

    Monday, December 10 2018 4:49 PM EST2018-12-10 21:49:21 GMT
    Tuesday, December 11 2018 7:35 AM EST2018-12-11 12:35:05 GMT
    A Christmas song that has warmed people's hearts for decades is now giving some people chills.More
    A Christmas song that has warmed people's hearts for decades is now giving some people chills.More
Powered by Frankly

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2018 WBOC. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices