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Lyons Police Force Will Cut Department By One-Third: Union

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(CBS) – A suburban police department is cutting its force by one-third.

The police union representing Lyons police personnel confirmed to CBS 2 that it has been informed by the village that the jobs of seven officers were to be cut at midnight Thursday.

It would be a bitter turn in labor negotiations that have been stalled since December.

“If I lived in Lyons I would be letting my council members and my mayor know that this is not acceptable,” union representative Tamara Cummins says. “It’s really disheartening.”

She says the village and the union have been negotiating for several months “to avoid this very situation.”

Lyons Village Manager Tom Sheahan says layoffs were necessary when the union did not respond to the village’s last, best and final offer recently. The police union says Lyons violated the current contract but Sheahan denies that; he also says there could be some new developments in the next day or so.

Sheahan says Lyons residents will still have enough police protection.

Village manager Tom Sheahan says Lyons is in a tough financial situation and had to make those changes.

Cummings also criticizes the village for its plans to eliminate its investigative division in order to put those officers on-the-street in uniforms. The village manager says nothing has been finalized along that front.