There is the budget to be considered, of course.
And the issues of cleanup and liability, and the question of whether the police union would approve a scheduling change.
And then there is the biggest hurdle to mounted police in Doylestown: The police chief opposes the idea.
Since Kissel started sharing the idea with residents and merchants several weeks ago, some have excitedly discussed the possibility that Doylestown could become the first Bucks community in recent memory to put an officer on horseback.
At its monthly meeting on Monday, however, the council said there were too many issues to work out before they formally brought the matter to a vote. The question was tabled until further notice.
``There are some definite flaws in [the proposal],'' Council President Philip Daly told Kissel at the meeting. ``The only reason there's any doubt about how we're going to vote, is you're the guy who's putting it forward.''
After Chief James Donnelly called the plan too expensive, the town's police and parking committee gave it a negative recommendation on Feb. 12. Donnelly said he would either have to hire an extra officer to fill Kissel's job as a squad leader, or pay Kissel overtime.
``We thought it was a good idea, but it would cost us a great deal of money, far more than we would achieve in benefit,'' Councilman William Stevens told the council, summing up the committee's feeling.
Kissel, however, in an enthusiastic plug for his proposal Monday, urged the nine present members of the 10-member council to part ways with the committee's recommendation.
``Doylestown has a unique opportunity to do something few communities have done. This town is uniquely set up for this,'' he said. ``My bottom line is, you have somebody willing to do the work. . . . I believe in this and will tell you right now that it will be a success. Once I'm gone from the department, the opportunity may never pass this way again.''
Kissel, who at 59 said he may retire in about seven years, said he could save the borough money by using his own riding gear and saddle. A retired racehorse could be donated from Philadelphia Park, or another racetrack, he said.
Kissel disputed Donnelly's assessment of the program's expense. While the chief said hiring a new officer would cost the borough $80,000 in salaries and benefits, Kissel said no new officer would be necessary. The only cost to the borough - after initial police training - would be about $325 per month to feed, care for, and board the horse at Delaware Valley College, he said.
But while some council members praised Kissel for his ingenuity, they were reluctant to approve a plan for the Police Department that the chief opposed.
``We've all done a lot of thinking on this,'' Daly told Kissel. ``I feel you should have worked with the chief a lot longer before bringing this to us. There's still a lot of questions that have to be answered.''
Kissel, who said he grew up riding horses and had long thought Doylestown could benefit from a mounted patrol, said after the meeting that he was discouraged by the council's reaction.
``I don't agree with their statement of supporting the chief. If the chief is wrong, he's wrong,'' Kissel said.
Donnelly, who oversaw Philadelphia's mounted units as a Philadelphia police officer before moving to Doylestown, said he was willing to look at the new schedule that Kissel sees as a way to save costs.
Donnelly has not ruled out horses completely, he said, ``But we have to be fiscally responsible. . . . I told Joe when he started this: I'm not for it - you have to convince me.''
Kissel said he was not sure if he would bring the question to the council again. ``I've already tried everything but crawling on my knees,'' he said.