SJTA STILL SITTING ON POLICE PATROL INFO

Assemblyman John Amodeo, a member of the Assembly Transportation Committee, called on the South Jersey Transportation Authority (SJTA) to be more forthcoming with information about its decision to discontinue using the Egg Harbor Township Police Department for its law enforcement need at the Atlantic City Airport.

?In this day in age, any change in airport security is a big deal,? said Amodeo. ?I asked the SJTA for certain information so I, and my constituents, can have peace of mind that there is adequate safety at the airport. However, the SJTA has been a little slow in providing the details of its decision.?

Amodeo said he is concerned that the SJTA is not matching their words with their deeds. At the January 29, 2008 meeting of the SJTA, the minutes show the SJTA was weighing the pros and cons before making a decision of police protection. On February 1st, the SJTA notified Egg Harbor Township that it was terminating its agreement with the township. In a letter to Amodeo dated March 26, the SJTA explained it still had not determined the costs of increasing the State Police presence at the airport.

?It seems that the SJTA made the decision without having all the facts,? said Amodeo. ?If they did have the facts, then let?s see them.?

Amodeo said so far he has not seen any information which indicates that any change in law enforcement personnel would actually be an improvement over the current arrangement.

?The Egg Harbor Township police provide exemplary service for the airport, its employees, and its passengers,? said Amodeo. ?I understand they receive the necessary specialized training to deal with any potential threat and provide their services at a lower cost than the State Police.

?While the State Police do an excellent job protecting our citizens, perhaps their resources could be better used patrolling the western parts of Atlantic County that rely on Sate Police protection and allow the Egg Harbor Township Police Department to continue their service at a location that is geographically located in Egg Harbor Township,? said Amodeo.

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