San Jose City Council is planning on outsourcing security at Mineta International Airport to the County Sheriff’s Department. According to officials, the new contract could save the city millions of dollars at a time when the city is facing a budget crunch and the airport’s modernization project has left it with a $1.3 billion debt.

The 41 police officers who now patrol the airport would be replaced by 19 sheriff’s deputies and four sergeants. At the same time, the cost per deputy, including benefits and a management overhead fee, comes to just $184,268 per person, compared to $262,199 per police officer.  The city now pays the SJPD $11 million to patrol the airport, but the total fee for the sheriff’s department to step in would be just $4.4 million.

The city is also investigating the possibility of transferring fire protection services to Wackenhut Services of Florida. By doing this, the city hopes to cut $2 million dollars from the cost of fire protection under the SJFD.

Read More at The Mercury News.