CONTINGENCY plans, including the possible disbandment of operational and administrative posts in divisions, have been devised to cope with an expected exodus of senior expatriate police officers in 1997. Deputy Commissioner, Management, Peter So Lai-yin, said proposals could include the restructure of formations, centralising posts, merging commands and reducing management tiers. It might also be possible to transfer some non-constabulary functions, such as processing infringement notices, to the private sector. Mr So denied that the existence of the plans indicated any attempt to push out overseas officers. However, he conceded that between 30 and 50 per cent of the 300-odd senior police employed under Her Majesty's Overseas Civil Service could be expected to leave, resulting in ''some loss of efficiency'' temporarily. ''When we know the extent of losses and what ranks are going to be affected, we have designed counter-measures to deal appropriately,'' he said. ''There are things that we believe we can do to our organisational structure. In our divisions and districts, these formations do have a degree of integration and overlap.'' Although not ideal, such reorganisation could be done if necessary. Mr So urged senior expatriate officers to straddle the transition, saying he wanted to maintain the force's multicultural ''partnership''. He said there had been no official survey to find the number of officers who might leave, but there was ''a basket'' of plans to deal with any leadership void. Recent force polling has shown 80 per cent of officers would be prepared to take part in overseas training schemes. Mr So said this showed strong morale and a high level of confidence in the future of policing.