[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of Kenilworth 6-12-2013 by Ord. No. 2013-07. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Personnel policies — See Ch. 37.
Editor's Note: This ordinance also superseded former Ch. 39, Police Department, consisting of Art. I, Establishment, Maintenance and Regulation, adopted 10-14-1958 by Ord. No. 58-35, as amended, and Art. II, Police Training, adopted 12-11-1962 by Ord. No. 62-27. The preamble to Ord. No. 2013-07 provided the purpose and summary of the ordinance and is on file in the Borough offices.
The Borough of Kenilworth, within the County of Union, State of New Jersey, created, pursuant to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 40A:14-118 et seq., a Police Department which by this chapter is ratified as to its existence and operation. The Police Department shall consist of personnel under the immediate supervision of a Chief of Police. The structure of the command and the maximum number of ranked police officers within the Police Department shall be limited to the positions as depicted in the Table of Organization in Chapter 15, § 15-2 of the Borough Code.
Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:14-118, the Mayor is hereby designated as the appropriate authority to update, adopt, and promulgate rules and regulations for the government of the Police Department and the discipline of its members. Said rules and regulations shall govern the conduct of and be binding upon the entire membership of sworn officers and civilian employees of the Police Department. Said rules and regulations shall be maintained in a manual form and be maintained by the Chief of the Department and the Borough Clerk.
The Council shall appoint from its own membership annually a Police Safety Committee consisting of three members and shall appoint one of the members of the Police Safety Committee as its Chairperson for the year. The Chairperson of the Police Safety Committee shall be and is hereby designated the Police Commissioner. The Police Commissioner shall have general cognizance and coordination with the Police Department and thereby report to the Police Safety Committee and the Borough Council. The Police Safety Committee and the Police Commissioner shall serve at the pleasure of the Council and shall be subject to removal by the Council without cause.
Chief of Police.
Dispatchers, police matrons and other civilian employees of the Police Department shall not be ranked and shall not be members of the Police Department but shall be governed by the provisions of this chapter, state statutes in effect and the Borough's Personnel Manual.
Each person newly appointed to the Department shall first be appointed as a probationary police officer for one year from the date of the appointment unless said person has served in another Police Department successfully within the State of New Jersey for a period of no less than one year and has already been certified as a PTC officer. The probationary period for officers with experience may be reduced by resolution for a period of no less than six months. At the termination of said probationary period, the officer shall upon affirmative vote of the Council become a permanent police officer, which shall require a formal resolution by the Borough Council.
Any officer at the termination of the probation period who fails to obtain an affirmative vote by the Council and an affirmative recommendation of the Chief of Police shall be terminated.
To be appointed as a member of the Police Department, an individual must:
All police officers and the Police Chief hereafter appointed shall be citizens of the United States, shall have earned a high school diploma or its equivalent, shall be in sound mind and body and in good health, able to intelligently read, write and speak the English language, be of good moral character and have not been convicted of any criminal offense involving moral turpitude.
Upon appointment, the officer shall promptly become a resident of the State of New Jersey. During the officer's entire tenure with the Department, he or she shall maintain his or her New Jersey residence.
Except as provided by law or collective bargaining contract, any permanent member of the Police Department who shall be absent from duty without just cause or leave of absence for a continuous period of five days shall, at the Borough's sole discretion, cease to be a member of the Department.
The Mayor is solely responsible for recommending candidates for the position of Police Chief. The selected individual shall be appointed with the advice and consent of the Council. Recommendations for the position of Chief of the Kenilworth Police Department are limited to the current members of the Department who shall have served as a sergeant for at least one year or be of a superior rank.
To be considered for the position, candidates for Police Chief must express an interest, in writing, to the Mayor and Borough Clerk within 10 days after the posting by the Borough Clerk on the bulletin board at the entrance to the Municipal Building and on the web page of the intent to interview individuals for the position of Chief of Police. Each of those individuals shall be offered the opportunity to be interviewed by the Mayor.
The Mayor, with the advice and consent of the Council, shall nominate all new police officers to be hired by the Borough.
The Mayor, with the advice and consent of the Council, shall nominate permanent police officers for promotion. The Mayor may make the nomination within a reasonable time when a position becomes available and the Borough Treasurer/CFO has determined that sufficient funds exist within the budget. A reasonable period for the Mayor and Borough Treasurer/CFO to make such recommendation and determination shall be within 60 days after a vacancy has been reported to the Council.
If the Borough Treasurer/CFO determines the availability of sufficient funds, and the Mayor fails to nominate an individual within 30 days after the affirmative determination has been made by the Borough Treasurer/CFO, then the Council may nominate an individual for promotion, and upon a majority vote with no fewer than four affirmative votes of the Council, an officer may be promoted.
In the event of a promotion to a higher position, the lower rank of the person promoted shall not be considered vacant until such officer so promoted shall express, in writing to the Chief and the appropriate authority, acceptance of the promotion.
All promotions to a superior position shall be made from within the membership of the Kenilworth Police Department as constituted at the time of such promotion and shall be made based upon the results of the following promotion procedures:
Except for the promotion to sergeant, to be eligible for promotion, the officer shall be in the current rank for no less than one year within the Department;
Promotion to the rank of sergeant requires five or more years of service within the Department; and
In the event that no one who meets the foregoing eligibility requirements is found to be satisfactory to the Borough Council for the promotion, then the next lower ranking officer may also be considered eligible for the promotion.
Notice of vacancy.
[Amended 11-8-2017 by Ord. No. 2017-13]
When the Chief of Police is aware of a vacancy or a pending vacancy of a superior officer (other than the Chief) as determined by the Table of Organization as set forth in § 15-2, the Chief shall report to the Police Commissioner that expected date of vacancy;
Selection of candidates; interviews.
Upon receipt of the notice of an intended vacancy, the Chief of Police shall post a notice to all personnel describing the position that may open within the Department and requesting interested parties to contact his office, in writing, within 20 days of the posting and include a resume. The Police Commissioner shall then, within 40 days after the posting, convene a meeting of the Department of Public Safety with the Chief of Police. At the meeting, the Chief will present the names of all officers that have expressed an interest and are eligible for the anticipated vacancy.
The Committee, with the Chief, shall examine each of the applicants' knowledge and understanding of any topics enumerated in § 39-9E(2)(c). The Committee, with the Chief or designee of Council if a member of the Committee is unavailable, after interviewing and questioning the candidates, will provide the names of the three top choices by consensus in the order of their preference to the Borough Clerk for the dissemination to the entire Council along with their resumes. The entire Council may elect to interview the candidates or proceed as it sees fit to promote based upon the Public Safety Committee's and the Chief's recommendation and thus avoid any formal testing as provided for in this chapter.
The Chief of Police with the appropriate authority or his/her designee shall prepare a one-hundred-question test which may be true or false and/or multiple-choice questions consisting of the following topics:
Kenilworth Police Department rules and regulations;
Kenilworth Police Department standard operating procedures;
Ordinances for the Borough of Kenilworth;
Criminal Code of the State of New Jersey (Title 2C);
Motor vehicle laws of the State of New Jersey (Title 39);
Attorney General Guidelines for Law Enforcement;
Domestic violence laws and procedures;
Duties and responsibilities of the position; and
Knowledge of cultural diversity and people skills.
All tests shall be graded together by the Police Chief and Borough Clerk within 14 days after the administration of the test and the results made available to the individuals participating and the Police Safety Committee for their review.
Candidate review and selection.
All candidates who have scored 75% or greater shall be considered eligible for promotion.
If the test has been administered within two years prior to the posting for the same level position, then only those candidates who had successfully completed the test shall initially be considered, and no further test will be administered. Upon recommendation of the Police Chief, the two-year period may be extended for up to one additional year by a resolution of the Borough Council.
The Chief of Police shall review the officers' prior performance, credentials, seniority, and demonstrated ability to work well with the community.
The Chief of Police shall meet with the Public Safety Committee to review and discuss recommendations for promotion. Along with his/her recommendations, at said meeting, he/she shall make available personnel, disciplinary and reprimand files for all the officers who have scored 75% or greater.
The Chief of Police, after meeting with the Public Safety Committee, shall thereafter at a regularly scheduled Council meeting make a recommendation to the Borough Council within 45 days after the completion of the review with the Public Safety Committee.
The Council is not bound by the Police Chief's recommendation for the promotion, but if the Council elects not to promote the person(s) recommended, the Council may discuss with the Police Chief the reasons for the rejection or reservations associated with the candidate for promotion.
The Council may then promote the applicant so nominated by the Chief of Police, by majority vote, or proceed to consider other officers.
In the event that the person selected by the Chief of Police is not accepted by the majority of the Council, the Chief of Police shall select another individual for promotion consideration and advise the Public Safety Committee within 30 days.
Notwithstanding the appointment or promotion procedures set forth herein, the governing body may, in its sole discretion, make promotions to fill vacancies, as the circumstances may warrant, from any other member of the Police Department.
Editor's Note: Former § 39-10, Appeals of test results, was repealed 11-8-2017 by Ord. No. 2017-13.
Editor's Note: Former § 39-11, Duties and responsibilities of Chief, was repealed 11-8-2017 by Ord. No. 2017-13.
The minimum duties of the captains, lieutenants and sergeants shall be to:
Have immediate charge of patrol officers.
Ensure that they are properly instructed and on alert in performance of duty; that they are clean, neat and properly uniformed; and that they are relieved properly in accordance with the approved schedule.
Ensure that all Department premises and properties are safe, clean and in working order.
Make reports to the member immediately preceding him/her in rank or, in his/her absence, to the next superior officer or the Chief.
The minimum duties of every regular member of the Department shall include and be limited to the following:
Preserve the public peace; protect life and property; detect, arrest and prosecute offenders of the laws of New Jersey and the ordinances of the Borough of Kenilworth; direct and control traffic; provide attendance and protection during emergencies; provide appearances in court; cooperate with all other law enforcement agencies; and provide training for the efficiency of its members and officers.
Editor's Note: See N.J.S.A. 40A:14-152.
Carry out the policies and orders of the Chief of Police and as specified in the rules and regulations as promulgated.
Devote his/her whole time and attention to the service of the Department, being expressly prohibited from following any other calling or being engaged in any other businesses, unless he/she receives the consent of the Chief of Police, and before such consent shall be given, the Chief of Police shall be satisfied that the employment shifts or routine schedule of duties shall not be disrupted, and unless the work is of such a nature that it does not in any degree impair the physical ability or mental alertness of the particular person from properly performing his/her duties as a member of the Police Department. Although certain hours are allocated to regular tours of duty, police officers are considered to be at all times on duty and must respond promptly and any time their services are required. Nothing in this subsection shall be considered to prohibit any member of the Kenilworth Police Department from serving on the Kenilworth Volunteer Fire Department and Rescue Squad, provided that any such Kenilworth police officer shall only be engaged in Kenilworth Volunteer Fire Department activities while the police officer is not on a regular tour of duty for the Kenilworth Police Department.
Remain on duty until properly relieved.
Watch all persons passing, especially strangers, and, if possible, fix in mind such impressions as will enable him/her to recognize persons accused of crime.
Take notice of all automobiles, trucks, and other vehicles, especially at night, and if anything suspicious is observed to stop the same and satisfy himself/herself that they are engaged in legitimate pursuits.
Report daily any accidents or unusual incidents to headquarters, in writing.
Duly report all streetlights and traffic control devices that are unlit or in any way out of order.
Report all matters affecting streets, such as openings, obstructions, etc., and see that permits accompany the work and that the proper protection thereof is provided.
Examine all activities to be licensed and report lack of proper licenses or failure to conform therewith.
To the utmost of his/her power, prevent the commission of assaults and breaches of the peace and, by his/her vigilance, render it extremely difficult for anyone to commit a crime.
If on patrol duty, call headquarters on relieving and being relieved.
Have his/her shield and weapon at hand at all times and be always ready to perform such duties as may be required of him/her.
When off duty, keep headquarters advised as to where and how he/she may be communicated with.
Keep his/her uniforms cleaned and pressed and his/her equipment clean and in order at all times.
Testifying for the defendant. Any employee subpoenaed to testify for the defense or against the municipality or Department in any hearing or trial shall notify the appropriate supervisor immediately upon receipt of the subpoena.
Truthfulness. Employees are required to be truthful at all times, whether under oath or not.
Civil actions; subpoenas. Employees shall not volunteer to testify in civil actions arising out of Department employment and shall not testify unless subpoenaed. If the subpoena arises out of Department employment or if employees are informed that they are a party to a civil action arising out of Department employment, they shall immediately notify the appropriate supervisor.
Civil depositions and affidavits. Employees shall confer with the appropriate supervisor before giving a deposition or affidavit on a civil case relating to their police employment.
Civil actions; expert witnesses. Employees shall not volunteer or agree to testify as expert witnesses in civil actions without the prior written approval of the County Prosecutor.
[Amended 9-12-2018 by Ord. No. 2018-12]
The title of "Special Law Enforcement Officer" is established in Article I, § 39-14.
Borough of Kenilworth authorizes the use of special law enforcement officers to assist the regular Police Department in the performance of its duties and responsibilities subject to the eligibility criteria and limitations set forth in the Special Law Enforcement Officers Act, N.J.S.A. 40A:14-146.10 et seq. No special law enforcement officers shall be appointed to any term exceeding one year.
No special law enforcement officer, by virtue of his/her appointment as such, shall be or become a regular member of the Police Department.
Special law enforcement officers are considered at-will part-time employees and can be terminated for cause after adequate hearing, unless the appointment is for four months or less, in which event the appointment may be revoked without cause or hearing (N.J.S.A. 40A:14-146.14).
Every special law enforcement officer, while on duty, shall abide by all the rules and regulations of the Police Department and those policies, general order or standard operating procedures established by the Chief of Police.
Qualifications. No person shall be appointed as a special law enforcement officer unless the person:
Is legally permitted to work in the United States;
Is a resident of the State of New Jersey during his/her term of appointment;
Is able to read, write and speak the English language well and intelligently and has a high school diploma or its equivalent;
Is of sound body and of good health;
Is of good moral character;
Has not been convicted of any offense involving dishonesty or that which would make him/her unfit to serve as a special law enforcement officer.
Duties; classification of special law enforcement officers. There shall be the following class of special police officers pursuant to law:
Class 3. Officers of this class must be a retired law enforcement officer under the age of 65, who had retired from his/her agency in good standing and possess a valid New Jersey Police Training Commission basic police officer certification. Such Class 3 officers must be physically capable of performing the functions of the position in accordance with New Jersey Police Training Commission guidelines. Such Class 3 officers are authorized to exercise powers and duties commensurate with those of a regular police officer. The use of a firearm by such officer may only be authorized upon successful completion of training and instruction as required by law. The Chief of Police may authorize the use of mechanical force weapons, but such special law enforcement officers must train and demonstrate proficiency with such mechanical force weapons with the same frequency as regular police officers.
Class 3 special law enforcement officers shall be nominated by the Chief of Police and approved by the Borough Council for one-year terms commencing on September 1 of each year and running until August 31 of the year.
Precertification standards shall be established by the Chief of Police and provided to each applicant.
In addition to standard operating procedure requirements, members of the Police Department shall not:
Leave their post, either without good and sufficient reason or without reporting such action to headquarters at the first opportunity.
Converse with citizens or with each other for a period of time exceeding five minutes, unless upon police business.
Lounge or slouch or have coats or shirts unbuttoned when on duty, and their shoes shall always be shined.
Smoke when on duty in uniform.
Release any prisoner without due authority or permit any prisoner to escape.
Willfully or through neglect suffer any property of the Department to be lost, spoiled, or damaged or wrongfully disposed of.
Enter a public place where intoxicating liquors are sold while in uniform or on duty except in the proper performance of duty.
Consume any intoxicating liquor or intoxicating beverage while in uniform or on duty except in the performance of their duties.
Report to duty while being intoxicated or under the influence of a controlled substance so as to interfere with the performance of the duties of a police officer.
Exercise the authority vested in their position that would be inconsistent with the obligations imposed upon them by their accepting a position as a member of the Kenilworth Police Department.
Commit excessive or unexcused absenteeism from their duties as a police officer.
Be candidates for or hold office in an elective public position or political organization within or inclusive of the jurisdiction in which they are employed unless authorized to do so in writing by the County Prosecutor.
Engage in political activity while on duty or in uniform or so as to impact the operation of the Department.
Engage in polling duties except in the performance of their official duties.
Display or distribute political material on any government property or in their uniform or while exposing their shield or gun.
Distribute political material as to the municipality of Kenilworth or the County of Union or the State of New Jersey wherein one represents oneself as a member of the Police Department.
Abuse the authority or trust delegated to them so as to diminish the public trust in the Police Department.
Members of the Police Department shall be subject to disciplinary measures as may be reasonably necessary. Reasons for discipline include, but are not limited to, any of the following offenses:
Intoxication while on duty or in uniform.
Willful disobedience of orders.
Indecent or profane or harsh language, immorality or lewdness.
Disrespect to the superior officer in rank or to any member of the Borough Council.
Unnecessary violence towards prisoners.
Leaving his/her post without just cause.
Absence without leave.
Sleeping on duty or neglect of duty.
Incompetency, lack of energy, or incapacity, mental or physical.
Committing an offense punishable under the laws or statutes of the United States, the State of New Jersey or any other state, or municipal ordinances within the State of New Jersey.
Disclosing to persons outside the Department any confidentially proposed action of the Department or any confidential orders of the Chief, Commissioner, Police Safety Committee or Borough Council.
Conduct unbecoming a police officer or conduct subversive to good order and discipline of the Department.
Absence from his/her post.
Publicly commenting disrespectfully on the official actions of superior officers, members of the Borough Council or other Borough officials.
Not properly patrolling his/her post.
Failure to make reports.
Untruthfulness, oral or written, with regard to his/her duties as an officer or as a member of the public.
Recklessly creating a condition without just cause so as to harm an individual or oneself.
Failure to uniformly apply the laws and regulations of the state without showing favoritism or disrespect to a group or individual based upon race, creed, religion or sexual orientation.
Soliciting or accepting goods or services from individuals or businesses for less than the same amount paid by the general public because of his/her position as a police officer.
Violation or disregard of Department rules and procedures.
Repeated violations. Repeated violations of the rules of conduct shall be indicative of employees' disregard for their duty and may be cause for dismissal. This shall apply regardless of the type or severity of the offenses.
Any members of the Police Department who shall willfully disobey any provisions of this chapter or any rule or regulations duly issued under authority of this chapter shall be subject to summary suspension by the Chief and, after hearing, if demanded, shall be subject to reprimand, loss of vacation days, loss of pay, reduction of rank, suspension without pay, dismissal or restoration to duty, as the Borough Council may, by resolution, determine.
No members of the Police Department shall be or become a member of any subversive organization or any organization affiliated with another organization which holds, claims or exercises the right to demand of any of its membership obedience to an order to strike or cease work for any cause or to disrupt the government of the United States by violence. Upon satisfactory proof to the Borough Council that any member of the Department has violated the provisions of this rule, it shall be the duty of the Borough Council to immediately discharge such member from the Department, pending further investigation if challenged within 10 days after the discharge.
No person shall hereafter be given or accept a permanent appointment as a police officer in the Borough of Kenilworth unless such person has successfully completed a police training course at a police academy approved and authorized by the Police Training Commission in the Department of Law and Public Safety of the State of New Jersey pursuant to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 52:17B-66 et seq., as may be amended.
This chapter shall not prohibit the giving or accepting of a probationary or temporary appointment as a police officer for a period not to exceed one year, provided the person has completed the police training course.
No person shall be permitted to take a police training course unless he/she holds a probationary or temporary appointment as a police officer in the Borough of Kenilworth, and such appointees shall be entitled to a leave of absence with pay during the period of the police training course.
All articles, sections, subsections, paragraphs and other provisions of Chapter 39 not specifically affected by the above amendment and modification shall remain in full force and effect.
If any section, paragraph, subdivision, clause, sentence, phrase or provision of this chapter is declared unconstitutional or invalid by a court of competent jurisdiction, such decision shall not affect the remaining portions of this chapter.
All Borough ordinances and parts of ordinances that are inconsistent with this chapter are hereby repealed.
This chapter shall become effective after final passage, adoption and publication as required by law.