HAMILTON TOWNSHIP – Eight years ago, the Hamilton Township Committee, facing a severe budget deficit, slashed its workforce. The downsizing included lowering the number of Hamilton Township police officers from 73 to 49. As a result, the HTPD Bicycle Unit was disbanded on June 15, 2016 due to staffing and safety concerns.
Recently promoted Police Chief Greg Ciambrone has decided to reinstitute the bike patrols to the force that now numbers 53 officers. “We are not mandating that the four officers assigned to the patrols ride the bikes,” Chief Ciambrone said. “It is to be used as a tool in areas where there are numerous car burglaries, curfew violations, etc. It can also be valuable at community related functions and for routine patrols at the mall and other retail areas.”
“It’s a great opportunity to engage with the public in order to gain their support and information. And it can be accomplished at a minimal cost.”
Chief Ciambrone knows the benefits of the program first-hand as he was a member of the bike patrol before it was disbanded. “I had such a positive experience when I did it,” he said. “I’m sure our current participating officers will also benefit our residents as well as those who visit and shop in our community.”
“This is part of bringing back the community policing policies to the township which was brought forth by Chief Ciambrone,” Hamilton Township Mayor Art Schenker said. “This will benefit our residents as well as those visiting our shopping areas.”