City of Savannah: Chatham County owes nearly $1.5 million - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

City of Savannah: Chatham County owes nearly $1.5 million

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) -

The City of Savannah says Chatham County owes them nearly $1.5 million.

During a city council workshop on Thursday, city officials said the county hasn't been paying their fair share for the Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police Dept. since 2007.

This is part of the reason why the city and county are renegotiating the police department merger.

According to the city, the county wants to pay less than they do now, but the city said they haven't even been paying all of what they agreed to when they first signed the merger agreement.

City officials said when they finalized the merger in 2005, the city and county split the cost about 70-30. It costs about $60 million to run the SCMPD, and the city agreed to pay about two-thirds with the county paying the rest.

However, over the years officials said there has been some disagreement about the breakdown of cost for things like patrols and criminal investigations. According to the city, the county has only been paying what they think is fair to pay and not what they agreed to pay, but the mayor said they are confident they will get it resolved.

"It's a new day," said Savannah Mayor Edna Jackson. "You know, we have another county manager, another chairman of the county commission. All of us have been getting together along with staff and sitting and talking. In the past that has not been the case, so we will negotiate."

City officials said they will be meeting with county officials at the end of the month to discuss merger negotiations. This will not interfere with the selection process of the new police chief.

Copyright 2014 WTOC. All rights reserved.

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