While City Council remains divided about whether or not American Rescue Plan funding should be used to hire additional police officers, Mayor Joe Schember believes that it’s the right move.

Mayor Schember appeared on JET 24 on Monday and said that they have read the rules for the funding very carefully.

He believes that using the money for additional police officers is within reason.

The mayor added that they will re-evaluate how to pay for the new officers in 2024 before the funding runs out in 2026.

“Our goal is to increase the police, increase the population of Erie so that there’s more revenue coming in that way. However, if we get to 2024 and we found that we haven’t been able to grow revenue at that point we’ll start reducing police,” said Mayor Joe Schemnber, (D), City of Erie.

Mayor Schember said that usually 10 police officers retire each year, and the police department is making efforts to have additional funding in place to help maintain the force.