December 30, 2011
Freeholders Say Regional Force Will Put More Boots on The Ground to Ensure Public Safety
In a press conference yesterday, members of Camden City’s police union and some city activists once again chose rhetoric over concrete proposals to deal with the public safety issue in Camden City. They said they’re preparing a petition to get a referendum to prevent the formation of a regional police force within the city.
“All we hear from the police union is rhetoric,” said Camden County Freeholder Director Louis Cappelli, Jr. “There is no concrete proposal. They haven’t even produced a copy of their petition. They have offered no solution for more boots on the ground
“The financial facts are clear. Camden City doesn’t have the budget to pay them and the union has been unwilling to negotiate a contract that would be sustainable and affordable. Now they want to block any real solution that doesn’t profit them, but would help the residents of Camden. The union’s concerns are to keep their jobs and to get salary increases.
“Three levels of government – the city, state and County—have determined that a regional force is the only affordable, sustainable solution that will put enough officers on the ground to ensure public safety. The police chief and our outside consultant agree.
“Now, as everyone is about to move forward to protect Camden City residents from rising violence, the unions are making one last desperate attempt to stop anything that they feel does not put their interests first.
“Our hope is that we can move forward to do what’s right for the people, leave the rhetoric behind and put the boots on the ground,” Cappelli said.