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Police department receives presentation of accreditation

Council also addresses parking issue at its Oct. 3 meeting

The accreditation program director for the New Jersey State Association of Chiefs of Police gave a presentation of accreditation to the township police department at council’s meeting on Oct. 3.

“ … Currently, out of the totality of the law-enforcement agencies in the state of New Jersey, about 43 to 44 percent have actually made it through this rigorous process of law enforcement accreditation,” Harry J. Delgado said. “In the case of the Moorestown Township Police Department, they’ve actually become re-accredited, (so) whereas 44 percent of them have been accredited initially, (that has) now dropped to 32 percent.” 

“That’s a very exclusive group that the Moorestown Township Police Department has joined,” he added.

According to njsacop.org, accreditation is a progressive and time-proven method of assisting law-enforcement agencies in calculating and improving overall performance. The foundation of accreditation lies in the adoption of standards containing a clear statement of professional objectives. Participating agencies conduct a thorough self-analysis to determine how existing operations can be adapted to meet these standards and objectives. 

When the procedures are in place, a team of trained, independent assessors verifies that the applicable standards have been successfully implemented. Delgado shared the significance of that achievement.

“The Moorestown police department has made a commitment to adhering to best practices at the state and national level, in a highly regarded, statewide law-enforcement accreditation program,” he explained during the council meeting.  “ … According to the assessors on site, under the leadership of (Provisional Chief of Police) Walter Walczak, the high level of competence, leadership and professionalism is evident within the agency … 

“ … It is indeed my honor tonight, on behalf of the New Jersey State Association of Chiefs of Police and the New Jersey Law Enforcement Accreditation Commission, to congratulate Chief Walter Walczak, the members of the Moorestown Township Police Department, the mayor, the council and those citizens that they so proudly serve for achieving re-accreditation, and indeed joining a very exclusive group of law-enforcement agencies in the state of New Jersey that have done so,” Delgado added at the council meeting.

“ … We’re continually evaluating and upgrading our directives and procedures as part of the accreditation standards, utilizing best practices, which ultimately provides the residents of Moorestown the most professional and well-trained police force available,” Walczak said. “We’d like to thank Mayor (Nicole) Gillespie, town council and Township Manager Kevin Aberant for their support.”

“I would also like to thank every Moorestown police officer for their service and their part in this effort.”

Later in the meeting, council discussed and adopted an ordinance on first reading to amend Chapter 168 of the township code Vehicles and Traffic. A public hearing was set for Oct. 24.

“This is something that has been brought before council many times, talking about addressing parking in the vicinity of school facilities,” Aberant noted.

Two proclamations were presented at the meeting, one honoring the 50th anniversary of Save the Environment of Moorestown (STEM). Its co-founder, Barbara Rich, addressed council during public comment.

“I appreciate your proclamation for STEM, recognizing their contribution to the township,” she said. “It did start quite a while back, and it was the inspiration from Esther Yanai, who at that time was a member of the League of Women Voters. The league has certainly played a vital role in this history … 

“I thank you all, and it has been a wonderful relationship between council and STEM.”

To view council’s Oct. 3 meeting, visit https://moorestown.nj.us.

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