Lower Pottsgrove to Advertise for Police Officers

SANATOGA PA – Advertisements in which the Lower Pottsgrove Police Department will announce it’s accepting applications from qualified individuals for a full-time police officer position were authorized Monday (March 1, 2021) by the township Board of Commissioners, even though commissioners indicated they don’t foresee any hiring in the immediate future.

Acting Police Chief Lt. William James acknowledged gathering the applications and, later, conducting appropriate tests for candidates, are the first steps in creating a certified list of people from which the department can interview and hire prospective officers. He hopes the list might be completed by the start of summer, he told board members.

The department currently is covering for two officer positions in a work schedule juggling act that in part relies on careful use of available shifts and officers, and some overtime, James said. One position is temporarily vacant due to a medical leave; the other due to a retirement.

The department’s last certified list, he added, expired during 2019. Even if it wanted to hire right away it lacks the Civil Service methods to do so, James noted.

In the coming round of applications and testing, the township earlier decided it will move away from its practice in recent years of using the Montgomery County Consortium of Communities‘ police examination program, according to Commissioner Ray Lopez, who last December also was re-appointed as a Civil Service Commission alternate member.

Lopez, during the commissioners’ Nov. 19 (2020) meeting, reported Lower Pottsgrove will look to the Harrisburg-based Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police Association to conduct future officer candidate testing. Competition among municipalities for consortium-tested candidates has grown stronger over time, Lopez noted. The township anticipates its comparative exclusivity in using the association will “give us better choices” for hiring, he said.

Police Department entrance photo by The Post