[Derived from Ch. II, Sec. 2-15, of the 1978 Code]
A Police Department is hereby established in the Borough under the name of the "Fort Lee Police Department."
[Amended 5-23-2000 by Ord. No. 2000-15; 6-28-2001 by Ord. No. 2000-32; 12-13-2001 by Ord. No. 2001-60; 1-24-2002 by Ord. No. 2002-1; 2-28-2002 by Ord. No. 2002-5; 4-4-2002 by Ord. No. 2002-12; 1-27-2005 by Ord. No. 2005-1; 11-8-2007 by Ord. No. 2007-50; 1-29-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-3; 2-10-2011 by Ord. No. 2011-5; 12-20-2012 by Ord. No. 2012-44; 1-17-2013 by Ord. No. 2013-1; 7-18-2013 by Ord. No. 2013-17; 7-17-2014 by Ord. No. 2014-8; 2-12-2015 by Ord. No. 2015-6; 12-15-2016 by Ord. No. 2016-39; 7-13-2017 by Ord. No. 2017-8; 11-9-2017 by Ord. No. 2017-14; 6-14-2018 by Ord. No. 2018-10]
The Police Department Table of Organization may consist of not more than 97 officers in total and three Special Law Enforcement Class III (SLEO III) officers in the following positions at the sole discretion of the Mayor and Council:
In the event that position of Chief of Police is vacated as a result of death, illness, incapacity or any other reason, the Deputy Chief shall temporarily assume the position of Acting Chief of Police. In the event the Deputy Chief is unavailable to assume command, the senior ranking officer present shall assume temporary command until a Captain shall be designated by the Mayor and Council, to assume temporary command.
The Chief of Police shall be the executive and supervisory officer of the Police Department and is responsible to the Police Committee for its proper functioning.
Officers of the Department shall rank in the order set forth above, and rank seniority shall be determined by date of advancement to that rank plus longevity as determined by the Administrative Code for civil service employees.
The senior ranking officer on duty on any shift shall be in charge of the Department during the shift unless relieved by an officer of higher rank, who shall thereupon sign an entry in the blotter to that effect.
[Amended 8-23-2012 by Ord. No. 2012-24]
Pursuant to the authority contained in N.J.S.A. 40A:14-118, the Borough Administrator of the Borough of Fort Lee is hereby designated as the appropriate authority for the adoption and promulgation of rules and regulations for the government of the Police Department. The Mayor, with confirmation by the majority vote of the Council, shall appoint one or more of the Council members as the Police Committee. The Police Committee shall have general supervisory direction of the Police Department, subject to ultimate control by the Borough Council. The Police Committee shall act through the Chief or, in his absence, the Deputy Chief or, in his absence, the ranking officer on duty.
Appointments to the Police Department shall be made by the Mayor and confirmed by the majority vote of the Council and in compliance with civil service and the laws of New Jersey. Promotions within the Police Department shall be made by the same procedure. Special officers, police matrons and school marshals shall be appointed annually in accordance with the laws of New Jersey or such other tomes as is deemed necessary.
Applicants for appointments to the Police Department shall be required to take and pass a written and physical examination.
No persons shall be appointed as a regular member of the Police Department unless he:
Is a citizen of the United States;
Is in good mental and bodily health;
Is able to read and write the English language intelligently;
Is free from conviction of a crime;
Is of good moral character;
Meets the requirements of civil service laws of New Jersey.
Each member of the Police Department shall take and subscribe to an appropriate oath of office as required by law entering upon duties of this office.
All members of the Police Department, after having been appointed and qualified, shall severally hold their respective offices during good behavior, efficiency in the performance of their duties and residence in the Borough of Fort Lee; provided, however, that all original appointments shall be for a probationary period of three months, which appointments thereafter will become absolute (N.J.S.A. 11:22-6).
Editor's Note: See now N.J.S.A. 11A:4-15.
The compensation and other benefits of the members of the Police Department shall be such as is from time to time established by the Council by ordinance or in accordance with law or referendum.
No member of the Department shall be absent from duty for any time unless first excused by the Chief or the Police Committee for due cause.
If a member is unable to report for duty or continue on duty due to illness or injury, he shall immediately report his disability to the Chief or, in his absence, the ranking officer of the Department on duty so that he can be excused and arrangements can be made for a substitute. Such member shall submit a medical report by a duly licensed physician stating that he is unable to continue on duty, specifying the illness or injury which is the cause thereof. In the event the member does not submit a medical report, he shall not be paid for the period of his absence and shall be subject to disciplinary action.
Any member who is on disability leave is required to remain at his home or hospital, unless otherwise authorized in writing by the Chief or the Police Committee.
The Police Committee, or the Chief, may order a member to submit to a medical examination at any time it or he deems the same necessary or desirable.
It shall be the purpose of every person employed as a member of the Police Department to devote his interest and activity primarily to the Department as his first and primary employment. Any other employment engaged in must be subordinated thereto; and subject to such regulation as the Council may adopt by resolution from time to time. No member of the Police Department shall engage in outside employment that may be detrimental to the proper performance of his duty as determined by the Chief of Police and the Police Committee.
Leave of absence may be granted without pay to permanent employees but not exceeding six months at any one time.
An extension of six months may be granted by formal action of the Chief of Police and the Police Committee and no further extension may be granted unless upon approval in writing of the Civil Service Commission.
Any member may have a leave of absence without pay to fill an elective position.
Leaves of absence may be granted with pay or partial pay where employee is disabled through injury or illness resulting from employment; provided, however, that the amount, shall be reduced by any workers compensation award.
The Mayor and Council of the Borough may, in its discretion, where deemed warranted, grant leaves of absence with pay not exceeding one year to members and officers of its Police Department and force who shall be injured, ill or disabled during the performance of their duties, provided that the examining physician appointed by the Borough Council shall certify to such injury, illness or disability.
[Amended 6-22-2016 by Ord. No. 2016-24]
All members of the Police Department shall comply with the rules and regulations of the Police Department as set forth in the document entitled “Rules and Regulations, Police Department, Borough of Fort Lee, New Jersey, 2016,” as attached hereto. Three copies of the rules and regulations are on file in the office of the Borough Clerk and may be examined by any interested party.
Upon adoption of this article and thereafter, the Chief of Police shall deliver to each member of the Police Department a copy of these rules and regulations and obtain from each member of the Police Department a receipt that he has received these rules and regulations.
Any neglect or failure to carry out the responsibilities and duties set forth in these rules and regulations shall be grounds for impositions of penalties as set forth in this article and in these rules and regulations.
Definitions. As used in this section, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- Any individual, partnership, corporation, business entity or other organization, other than the Borough of Fort Lee, which employs a police officer to perform the services of a security guard.
- All periods of time when a police officer is not scheduled for a tour of duty by the Fort Lee Police Department.
- POLICE OFFICER
- Any regular or special police officer of the Borough of Fort Lee.
- SECURITY GUARD
- A position of employment involving the wearing of a police uniform or the carrying of a firearm or other dangerous weapon as defined by N.J.S.A. 2A:151-41. 
- WHILE IN THE EMPLOY OF THE EMPLOYER
- All times when a police officer is scheduled for and does work for the employer as a security guard.
- WORKERS COMPENSATION INSURANCE
- All forms of insurance, including self-insurance, required under N.J.S.A. 34:15-1 et seq.
Editor's Note: See now N.J.S.A. 2C:39-3, 2C:39-4 and 2C:39-5.
No employer shall employ a police officer while off-duty to perform the services of a security guard without having first filed with the Borough Clerk a certificate of workers compensation insurance.
No employer shall employ a police officer while off-duty to perform the services of a security guard without having first filed with the Borough Clerk a certificate of comprehensive general liability insurance in the amount of not less than $200,000 for one person and $500,000 for any one occurrence with respect to injuries and damages suffered or caused by police officers while in the employ of the employer.
No certificate of insurance required by this section shall be deemed filed with the Borough Clerk unless it has been first approved by the Borough Attorney.
All policies of insurance evidenced by any certificate filed hereunder shall be maintained by the employer in full force and effect at all times while any police officer is employed by such employer. Upon the change or renewal of any such policy of insurance, the employer shall forthwith file with the Borough Clerk a new and current certificate of insurance in compliance with the foregoing provisions.
Any employer who employs a police officer while off-duty to perform the services of a security guard without first having complied with the requirements of this subsection shall be subject to a fine of $100 or imprisonment of one day, or both, for each day that it employs the police officer.
Any police officer who accepts or continues employment while off duty with an employer who has not complied with the requirements of this subsection shall be deemed in violation of the rules and regulations of the Police Department and shall be subject to appropriate discipline thereunder.
The hourly rate of compensation for police officers performing extra-duty or off-duty work shall increase to $75 per hour as of the beginning of the first new pay period after all parties have executed the Amendment and Augmentation Agreement, and the effective date of this subsection, and that rate shall continue through December 31, 2018.
[Added 11-9-2017 by Ord. No. 2017-15]
As of January 1, 2019, the above-referenced hourly rate of compensation shall be increased to $90 per hour.
[Added 11-9-2017 by Ord. No. 2017-15]
Under both Subsections H and I above, the minimum call-in shall be four hours of pay for one to four hours of work. Work in excess of four hours would be paid as if up to eight hours were worked. Work in excess of eight hours per call-in shall be at the then appertaining (i.e., $75 or $90) flat hourly extra-duty or off-duty work rate in lieu of any other or overtime pay rates set forth in the Collective Negotiations Agreement.
[Added 11-9-2017 by Ord. No. 2017-15]
Effective immediately upon the joint execution of the Amendment and Augmentation Agreement, and the effective date of this subsection, the fee for Borough patrol cars in connection with extra-duty or off-duty work shall be $75 per day per vehicle, and the administrative fee shall be set at $5 per police officer, per hour.
[Added 11-9-2017 by Ord. No. 2017-15]
The Borough, in its sole discretion, may make such modifications to the terms for extra-duty or off-duty work as may be administratively necessary and convenient and in the best interests of the Borough and its citizens.
[Added 11-9-2017 by Ord. No. 2017-15]
Delegation to hearing officer. Pursuant to the authority contained in N.J.S.A. 40A:14-118, the Mayor and Council of the Borough of Fort Lee is hereby designated as the appropriate authority for the discipline of the members of the Police Department. In dealing with discipline of members of the Police Department, the Mayor and Council, at its discretion, may elect to conduct a disciplinary hearing and determine the charge or charges made against a member or officer of the Police Department or may delegate and empower an individual to serve as hearing officer. The Mayor and Council as the appropriate authority shall render a final determination on all Police Department disciplinary matters. The Mayor and Council shall have the power and authority to affirm, reverse or modify the findings and recommendations of a designated hearing officer. When the Mayor and Council designates an individual as hearing officer, the hearing officer will adhere to the procedures set forth in Subsection C herein.
Recording. The hearing proceeding shall be recorded by a:
The hearing officer shall prepare his report as soon as possible after the conclusion of the hearing, which written report shall consist of:
A short statement of the nature of the proceedings;
Names of counsel appearing and witnesses testifying;
A summary of the testimony;
Specific findings of fact;
Specific conclusions based on such findings of fact;
An appropriate decision based on such findings and conclusions.
A true copy of the report shall be served forthwith upon each party to the proceedings and the Mayor and Council personally or by certified mail.
Copies of any exceptions to the hearing officer's report and any supporting briefs may be filed by any party to the proceedings with the Mayor and Council within 15 days after service of the report; provided, however, that the Mayor and Council may for good cause extend the time for filing such exceptions and briefs. Copies of such exceptions and any supporting briefs shall be served simultaneously on all other parties. Cross-exceptions and answering briefs may be filed within 10 days from receipt of previously filed exceptions and briefs; provided, however, that the Mayor and Council may for good cause extend this time limit.
Any party to the proceeding who objects to all or part of the report shall obtain a transcript of the hearing at the party's own cost and expense and furnish copies to the other parties and to the Mayor and Council.
The Mayor and Council, after consideration of the hearing officer's report and any briefs or exceptions and any transcript of the hearing, where furnished and following oral argument of the parties, if requested, will amend, modify, reject or accept the hearing officer's report and recommendations and issue the Mayor and Council's decision to all parties, such decision to be rendered within 30 days following receipt of all exceptions, cross-exceptions, briefs, and transcript, where furnished and any oral argument.
It is the intent of this section to give any member or officer of the Police Department against whom charges may be preferred a fair hearing upon the charges.
If any provisions of this section or the application of such provision to any person or circumstances is declared invalid, such invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications of this article which can be given effect and, to this end, the provisions of this article are declared to be severable.