Tim Wyrick

BLAINE – Defunding the police is not an issue here.

The 2021-22 fiscal year budget includes funds to hire another full-time officer, and Police Chief Tim Wyrick says there should not be any problem filling the position.

“I have six people who are interested in coming over here, and they are all certified, licensed officers,” Wyrick said.

He said he and his officers have not encountered the anti-police sentiment that has swept over many communities across the nation, including the city of Knoxville.

“We just don’t see that here,” he said.

He said there are instances where someone will try to test an officer to see what kind of reaction they get.

“The key is making sure all our recording devices, body cameras and in-car cameras are working. We use them in every single contact we have with the public,” he said.

The Board of Mayor and Aldermen will consider the budget on final reading at its next meeting Monday, June 21. It was approved unanimously on first reading at the board’s meeting in May.