The recent New Milford Borough Council meeting brought changes to the local law enforcement landscape, with the inauguration of the borough’s first-ever unarmed Class One Special Law Enforcement Officers (SLO1s) and the swearing-in of two additional officers. The council also announced a slew of community events and acknowledged the successful collaboration with local organizations that resulted in significant infrastructural improvements.
At the forefront of the meeting was the historic swearing-in of the borough’s first SLO1s. Council President Randi Duffie, alongside other members of the council, expressed gratitude and acknowledged the importance of this moment. The newly inaugurated Class One Officers, who have been attending the Bergen County Police Academy, are L. Marcario, Rob Mitchell, Shane Ceri, and Gregory Kumer. These officers, who are unarmed, will perform duties such as traffic control and spectator control, and will be authorized to issue summonses for various offenses. As explained by Captain V, the development of this division was initiated due to changing times and stricter training regulations.
In addition to the inauguration of the SLO1s, the council also welcomed two new officers to the New Milford Police Department. John Riich, a former detective from the Patterson Police Department, and Desmond Kelan, a military veteran pursuing a degree in Homeland Security, were both sworn in amidst praise from the council members. The hiring process, which involved reviewing over 150 resumes and applications, was applauded for its thoroughness and effectiveness.
Mayor Michael Putrino and the council also announced numerous upcoming community events, including the New Milford Junior Football and Cheer Bonfire, Santa Visits by Helicopter, the Milford Annual Holiday Tree Lighting, the Milford Annual Menorah Lighting, and the Environmental Resource Inventory Celebration. These events, aimed at fostering community spirit and engagement, were presented with enthusiastic encouragement for public participation.
The council meeting also highlighted a successful infrastructure project involving the Department of Public Works (DPW) and local entities. A concrete block wall was installed on Columbia Street adjacent to the Elks property, addressing an overgrown area encroaching on the roadway. Notably, the project incurred no cost to the borough, thanks to a donation of blocks from Public Service Electric and Gas and tree removal services provided by SpenTree.
The council also took the opportunity to recognize the work of volunteers who were appointed to the Municipal Alliance and the Revolution New Jersey Committee. These appointments, as well as the proclamation of November 19th to 25th, 2023 as National Family Week, underscored the council’s commitment to community involvement and family values.
Before concluding the meeting, council members praised the All-Season Chamber Players’ concert at the library and commended the Public Events Committee for organizing a successful Veterans Day event. After the council closed the public session, several resolutions were adopted unanimously. The next mayor and council meeting was announced to take place on November 27th.