BERNVILLE, Pa. – Bernville is a small borough of fewer than 1,000 residents, tucked along an often-busy stretch of Route 183.

"It's a small community and we need to keep it that way," said Dawn McCleary.

Those who call it home, and some of those who just pass through, said they like seeing police Chief Brian Thumm keeping an eye on things.

"They need a patrol out here because of the speeding," said Maria Sanchez of neighboring Penn Township.

"I like seeing the police presence," said Marvin Neuin of Bernville. "It slows everyone down. It's a heavily-traveled road."

But that presence could change, as the borough council will bring the community together Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Bernville Fire Company to talk about the department's future, and what the chief, mayor and council president said are budget concerns.

"Bittersweet, I would say," Thumm said. "I've gotten a lot of shows of support from the community. I also understand there [are] a lot of people that aren't happy with my service, so it's a little hard. I've put my heart and soul into the town for the last 14 years."

Borough Council President Danny Strunk said he plans to vote in favor of keeping Thumm and a part-time officer.

Mayor Shawn Raup-Konsavage said "there's no good answer" on the issue, but the tax base makes the two-person staff hard to fund.

All involved said any change would likely lead to full-time state police coverage.

"I think response time would be an issue," McCleary said. "We are small and we're here, so again, I think they need to stay here."

Thumm said he plans to attend the meeting, but he's torn on whether he'll talk.

"I'm not a hundred percent sure that I will speak," Thumm said. "I'm gonna leave it up to the town. They have to decide whether they want service or not."