Skip to main content

One is more than three

07/16/2014 10:03PM, Published by ACL, Categories: In Print, News



After the proper assessments are conducted and the feasibility studies are completed, there may be every reason in the world for the municipalities of Kennett Township, New Garden Township and the Borough of Kennett Square to ultimately decide not to merge their police departments. In the end, it may be determined, both by the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) and the voting arm of these three municipalities, to declare this current assessment of a potential regional police department nothing more than a proverbial toe dip in the waters of what could be, and to remain as three distinct – but separate – police units. Yet given the domino-like effect of regional police forces being established throughout Pennsylvania over the last decade – 35 at last count throughout the state – the evidence may be stacked in favor of creating a centralized law enforcement unit. 

Perhaps the gauntlet of moving toward regionalized police units was handed down in 1973, after the National Advisory Commission on Criminal Justice Standards and Goals recommend that all police departments with less than ten full-time, sworn-in officers should consoliate for improved efficiency and effectiveness. Currently, Kennett Township has two full-time officers, including its police chief Albert McCarthy. Kennett Square Borough has 11 full-time officers, including its polie chief Edward Zunino. New Garden Township currently has 11 full-time officers, including its police chief Gerald Simpson. Ronald Stern, a local government policy specialist with DCED and a former municipal police chief, told representatives from seven Schuylkill County in 2012 – all of whom were considering the idea of compartmentalizing their police departments – that regionalization of police departments “is the only way to move forward in this commonwealth. There are over 1,200 municipal police departments in this commonwealth, more than any other state. It creates a problem when you have elected officials in smaller municipalities trying to keep the same level of public safety that you have had or want to have, but with the budgets and economy the way it is, it makes it very difficult.” 

Clearly, consolidating these units into one unified, regional police department would not only satisfy the edicts stated in the National Advisory Commission's recommendation, it would allow officers to bring their individual expertise to a larger constituency. The potential of such a force to achieve a higher standard of police protection would be far greater than anything any individual unit could achieve on their own; police back-up protection and follow-up investigations would increase dramatically. Officers with specialization in certain areas of law enforcement would be able to share their talents with other officers, skills that would be able to extend their reach to a larger population.  

We advocate for the establishment of such a department, and should the feasibility study reveal such a need, we encourage all authorities in these municipalities to place politics aside for the greater good of the people who elected them to serve. It is their protection that is most at stake, not your political careers.     



Like what you're reading? Subscribe to Chester County's free newsletter to catch every headline



kennett township new garden township pennsylvania department of community and economic development borough of kennett square


  • The Galer Estate family invites you to join our Wine Club, a community of members who enjoy fine ...


  • Holidays at Hagley: A Child's Delight

    12/05/2016
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    The 1803 du Pont family ancestral home, Eleutherian Mills, will feature holiday decorations and i...


  • Debtors Anonymous

    12/05/2016
    06:00PM — 07:00PM

    In D.A., our purpose is threefold: to stop incurring unsecured debt, to share our experience wit...


  • The Galer Estate family invites you to join our Wine Club, a community of members who enjoy fine ...


  • Drop in on Nature

    12/08/2016
    09:30AM — 12:00PM

    Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:30AM-12:00PM Fall session: Thursday, September 15th thru Thursday...


  • Holidays at Hagley: A Child's Delight

    12/08/2016
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    The 1803 du Pont family ancestral home, Eleutherian Mills, will feature holiday decorations and i...


  • Christmas by Candlelight

    12/08/2016
    01:00PM

    Christmas by Candlelight, a heartwarming celebration of the yuletide season, is back by popular d...


  • Nature Studio

    12/08/2016
    04:00PM — 05:30AM

    Thursdays from 4:00PM-5:30PM Fall session: December 1st, 8th and 15th Winter session: Starts J...


  • Clutterers Anonymous

    12/08/2016
    06:00PM — 07:00PM

    Clutterers Anonymous℠ (CLA℠) is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strengt...


  • Sleeping Beauty: A Musical Panto

    12/08/2016
    07:00PM — 09:00PM

    Sleeping Beauty: A Musical Panto By Pete Pryor & Samantha Reading Music & Lyrics by Alex Bech...


  • The Road: My Life with John Denver

    12/08/2016
    07:30PM — 09:30PM

    The Road: My Life with John Denver By Randal Myler & Dan Wheetman Directed by Randal Myler Dec...


Chester County High School Sports