$20K for police car upgrades

Township Council approves ordinance to install new software, hardware in patrol cars


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VERNON — The Vernon Township Council unanimously approved paying $20,000 to equip eight patrol cars with e-ticket software and hardware.

Councilman Dan Kadish expressed concern during the first reading of the ordinance on Feb 10. The phrase “down-payment” was used in regards to the $20,000 price tag for the software and hardware. The ordinance has since been amended to reflect the purchase more clearly and to specify that $20,000 is the total, one-time cost for the e-ticket program's installation.

According to Council President Brian Lynch, the ordinance is part of the “Capital Investment Fund,” which is separate fund from the township's budget.

“It is going to enable the Police Department to move forward with enforcement of the laws and be able to find out critical information on vehicles that are being stopped and are being ticketed for violations in Vernon Township in a much quicker way than if they called the dispatch center,” Lynch said.

The Vernon Police Department already has two cars equipped with e-ticket devices, which have been in service for four months. The software produces instantaneous information about the driver, according to Mayor Victor Marotta said at a previous meeting.

“The productivity in terms of secondary tickets has jumped,” explained Marotta. “It formerly took thirteen mouse clicks to find out if a driver’s license is suspended. Now, officers can just swipe driver licenses and immediately become informed of any violation attached to the driver’s records.”

This new technology is part of the plan to expand and enhance Vernon’s police force. In addition to e-ticketing software and hardware, the police department has received new vehicles and devices such as a license plate scanner in 2013.

Along with the new equipment, a completely rearranged team of officers are striving to improve the town’s police presence in 2014.

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