To the Editor,
The Office of Sheriff, is the only elected law enforcement official in America. In 2011, I was given the honor and privilege of being elected the 50th Sheriff of Rockland County, on a promise to be the Sheriff of all the people of Rockland County. To me, that means ensuring that the law is enforced evenly and consistently for every one of our residents in every one of our communities.
Recently, the Rockland County Republican Committee has begun circulating a video with a voice over that alleges I have “refused to enforce the illegal housing laws in Rockland” while displaying a photograph of me with a group of men dressed in religious clothing. That inflammatory statement is simply wrong, specious and untrue. Any claim that the Sheriff of Rockland County or any Sheriff’s Officer does not enforce the law is fabricated and pure political rhetoric.
The Sheriff’s Office has, and will continue to collaborate with our dedicated volunteer firefighters, the people who started the Illegal Housing Task Force in Rockland County, to bring attention to the issue of building and fire code violations that increase the risks to residents and firefighters alike. Deputies in both the Police Division and Civil Division at the Sheriff’s Office, while conducting their official duties, make referrals of observed violations to the Task Force and the town and village building and fire officials, who have the training and statutory authority to enforce the fire and building codes. Just this past week patrol deputies serving a Family Court Order of Protection, observed what they believed was a violation and made the appropriate referral for follow up. Civil Officers as they are in homes and apartments throughout all of Rockland are sending reports. In other words, referrals for code enforcement are referred to the professionals best able to address these problems.
Clearly, that isn’t to say that some landlords don’t also engage in conduct that may constitute a violation of county or criminal law. In those cases, the men and women of the Sheriff’s Office will respond to and investigate those complaints. Where they find evidence of a violation, appropriate enforcement action will be taken and adjudicated in the appropriate court.
I have spent the last 36 years working as a law enforcement officer in Rockland County and have been successful by working together and coordinating efforts with the town and village police departments to provide the best public safety services possible for our residents. In doing so, I have always been mindful of the cost to the taxpayers and endeavored to provide that service in the most efficient manner possible.
As your Sheriff, I will continue to work collaboratively with all the police agencies and municipal officials in Rockland County, to fairly enforce the law and to keep all of our residents, in all of our communities safe. Additionally, I will make certain that the Sheriff’s Office continues to do all it can to make Rockland a safe place to live, work and raise our families. To state otherwise, is baseless and is purely a politically motivated smear campaign.
For additional information about the Sheriff’s Office, visit us at our social media sites; Facebook page “Rockland County Sheriff’s Office” , Twitter account; @RocklandSheriff and website; ROCKLAND COUNTY SHERIFF OFFICE LINK.
Louis Falco, III
Rockland County Sheriff