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Chester County Press

Kennett Square officials want municipal police departments to be able to use radar

05/09/2017 01:02PM ● By Steven Hoffman

Citing the possibility for increased safety, Kennett Square Borough Council last week adopted a resolution calling for Pennsylvania to allow municipal police departments to use radar to stop speeding motorists.

Currently, Pennsylvania regulations only allow State Police to utilize radar, not local law enforcement agencies. Municipalities have long wanted to have their police departments use radar as a way to enforce speeding regulations. Pennsylvania is the only state in the U.S. that does not allow its municipal police to use radar.

“It’s an archaic, weird law,” Kennett Square Borough mayor Matthew Fetick said. He added that this is the first time that state lawmakers have moved a bill calling for the elimination of the prohibition against municipal police departments using radar out of committee—so there may be momentum for a change this year.

The resolution approved by council notes that local police departments should be able to utilize the most accurate and modern equipment available to enforce local speed limits. The resolution encourages State Representatives and State Senators to support the Coalition to Eliminate the Prohibition Against Municipal Police Using Radar. The coalition includes the Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police Association, the Pennsylvania State Association of Boroughs, the Pennsylvania Municipal League, the Pennsylvania Association of Township Supervisors, and the Pennsylvania State Mayor's Association.

In other business at the same meeting, Kennett Square Borough Council appointed Police Chief Bill Holdsworth as the Open Records Officer for the Kennett Square Police Department. The Open Records Officer is the person designated to handle open records requests. Karen Scherer, the assistant to the borough manager, is the designated Open Records Officer for the borough, but many municipalities have a person responsible for records requests specific to the police department. Holdsworth will handle such requests for the remainder of 2017.