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Bergen County freeholders appoint ‘blue ribbon’ panel to study police merger plan


Bergen County freeholders appoint ‘blue ribbon’ panel to study police merger plan

APRIL 5, 2014    LAST UPDATED: SATURDAY, APRIL 5, 2014, 1:21 AM

Freeholders appoint

‘blue ribbon’ panel

The Bergen County freeholders have appointed a “blue ribbon” committee of law enforcement officials to help plan for the merger of the county police force into the Sheriff’s Office — even though a court challenge to block that move is pending.

The eight-member group and three freeholders are being asked to work out “the nuts and bolts” of what a combined department would look like, said Freeholder Tracy Zur, chairwoman of the freeholders’ shared services committee.

“There’s a lot of work to be done here,” Zur said Friday. “We want to be prepared to move forward once we’re legally able to do so.”

The heads of the three main components of county law enforcement — Sheriff Michael Saudino, county Police Chief Brian Higgins and county Prosecutor John Molinelli — have been asked to serve on the panel or send a representative.

Also picked were Cresskill Police Chief Edward Wrixon, retired Tenafly Police Chief Michael Bruno, retired New Jersey State Police Sgt. Edward McDonough, Paramus police Deputy Chief Robert Guidetti and retired Hackensack police Detective Sgt. Louis D’Arminio.

Freeholders Zur, James Tedesco and John Felice also will be part of the panel as members of the shared services committee.

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