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Lathrop to decide on location for new police station
LPS car

The cramped quarters of the existing Lathrop Police Services complex on Seventh Street might soon be going away.

Tonight  the Lathrop City Council is set to finally make a decision on where Lathrop’s law enforcement services will be permanently located moving forward – ending a long process of public input and negotiation with local developers about funding and location.

And if the council signs off on the proposal, the new police station won’t cost the City of Lathrop a dime.

According to the staff report for the special agenda item, River Islands Development has offered to foot the full $8.8 million initial cost plus overruns in exchange for reimbursement through building permits that will be issued in the future for the sprawling master planned community.

With the majority of Lathrop’s residential growth concentrated in the River Islands area – the roughly 11,000 homes set to be constructed there would nearly double the size of the City of Lathrop’s existing population – the council, after input from residents, has expressed its desire to locate the facility there so it can serve both sides of the San Joaquin River and both the new and historic portions of town.

River Islands will finance the cost of the construction, which will be offset by a $1.8 million contribution by the City of Lathrop from its Municipal Services community facility fees fund. It will save the city from having to tie up that capital through bonding or deplete its existing general fund reserves to construct the new facility.

Of the options that the City of Lathrop proposed to the public and considered publicly – including building a new facility on the east side of town, buying property across the street from City Hall and constructing a facility there, and partnering with River Islands  – the option being considered on Monday has proved to be the most cost effective.

While the shift of moving from the police department from the section of town that has historically housed it not just to the other side of I-5 but to the other side of the San Joaquin River was initially feared to upset longtime residents, the construction of the Bradshaw’s Crossing bridge has connected the two segments of the community and will cut down on existing police response times into River Islands.

The cost of the 2.5 acres of land necessary for the initial construction and subsequent expansion down the road is not included in the $8.8 million price tag for the construction of the building.

If approved, the construction of the police department in River Islands will officially transfer the majority of the City of Lathrop’s municipal services to the west of I-5. It will concentrate both the police and fire administrative services in River Islands thanks to the decision by the Lathrop Manteca Fire District to construct its new state-of-the-art facility within the development through a partnership with River Islands.

The Lathrop City Council meets on the second Monday of every month at Lathrop City Hall – located at 390 Towne Centre Drive – at 7 p.m.

Tonight’s meeting will be a special meeting to tackle several issues that the council has been considering for months, if not years. For additional information, or to obtain a copy of the upcoming agenda, visit the City of Lathrop’s website at

To contact reporter Jason Campbell email or call 209.249.3544.