Welcoming the Lower Pottsgrove Police Department accreditation Monday night were, from left, Ofcs. Christopher Dipiano, Matthew Meitzler, and Matthew Musselman; Abington Township Police Chief William Kelly; township Chief Michael Foltz, Sgt. Robert Greenwood, and Ofc. Scott Weidenhammer
SANATOGA PA – Why wait until summer?, Abington Township Police Chief William Kelly reasoned.
The Lower Pottsgrove Police Department last week became the most recently accredited municipal law enforcement agency in Pennsylvania. It was due to receive recognition for its accomplishment from its peers during mid-July, at the 100th anniversary meeting of the Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police Association in King of Prussia PA.
Police Chiefs Association First Vice President William Kelly talks to Lower Pottsgrove commissioners during their meeting
But the township Board of Commissioners, which has supported the department’s attempt to rank among the most professional and elite organizations in the state’s policing community, was eager to celebrate the achievement. Kelly, who is the association’s first vice president, was happy to oblige.
He battled traffic Monday night (April 7, 2014) to arrive at the Buchert Road municipal building and present Chief Michael Foltz and a team of his officers with their accreditation certificate in advance.
“There are lots of police departments that would like to claim to be among the best in the state. You can truly say yours is,” Kelly told commissioners. Of the now more than 1,200 police agencies in Pennsylvania, only slightly more than 90 – about 6 percent – have qualified for accreditation, he added.
The association created and refined more than 130 standards that departments must meet to certify their professionalism. The months-long review of procedures, facilities, records, policies and day-to-day operations is a way to ensure each department is working in the public interest with fairness and peak efficiency, its members say.
Each of the five commissioners took their turns praising Foltz, the department, and the township staff for its work in making accreditation possible. Foltz, in turn, thanked commissioners and his officers for their help and support, and singled out Ofc. Scott Weidenhammer, who served as the department accreditation coordinator. “He made sure we had everything we needed,” Foltz said of Weidenhammer.
The association will still put Lower Pottsgrove’s name up in lights during the July convention, Kelly assured commissioners. “It’s a great ceremony, and really something to see,” he said of the presentation.
Related (to the Lower Pottsgrove Board of Commissioners’ April 7 meeting):