Police layoffs may take a bite out of Hillside K-9 unit

HILLSIDE - The K-9 unit at the Hillside Police Department just finished 26 weeks of training at a cost of about $100,000, but now the program is at risk due to police layoffs.

Although the K-9 program is funded through a federal program and is not in the police budget, officials say it may still face losses. On graduation day, two police officers who were training with the dogs, Robert Bartell and Michael Flowers, received layoff notices, along with three other cops.

The Mayor Joseph Menza tells News 12 New Jersey he's close to a deal with council members and the police unions to try and save all five human jobs, and to keep their furry partners fighting crime.

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