A police shortage in La Grange is prompting officials to move up their plans to have deputies patrol the Lenoir County town.
Lenoir County Commissioners voted unanimously to approve two contracts with the town.
The town has already okayed the elimination of its police force, and instead have two sheriff deputies patrol La Grange around the clock.
While the deal is effective July 1st, commissioners also approved an interim agreement with the town. That's because many of La Grange's officers have already left, leaving the town with a "bare minimum" number of officers.
The interim agreement says the county will provide supplemental law enforcement services until July, the total cost to be paid for by the town.
La Grange officials says the move to eliminate its police department will not only will save the town money, but it will also allow the town to have drug dogs, S.W.A.T. teams, and a new focus on drug activity in the area.
All of the remaining La Grange officers will be transferred to the sheriff's department on July 1st.
The move had met with strong public opposition from many residents of La Grange.