Archive: February, 2012
Camden’s mayor wants to know what residents would like to see in their new police department.
A 13-question survey, available on the city’s website, is the next move by Mayor Dana L. Redd in getting community feedback on a proposed regional police force.
Redd recently held nine neighborhood meetings to promote the idea of a countywide force. The concept has been controversial because it requires disbanding the current city police force. Only 49 percent of Camden’s current officers could be hired by the force to work in its Metro division. So far, only Camden has expressed interest in the endeavor, which Redd and other area leaders say would put more boots on the ground.
Brian Lawrence is determined to change Camden’s negative image.
Lawrence, a minister at St. John Baptist Church, has helped organize a coat drive for the city’s less fortunate. But he wants Camden students to be the ones working the coat drive Saturday at St. John.
“Enhancing the power of youth,” and a “new appearance of Camden,” is Lawrence’s mission.
A trio of journalists from Korea is spending this week chatting with Camden residents and taking in local scenes that often make the news: abandoned homes, a closed downtown library, crime tape.
The Korean Broadcasting System, the largest South Korean television network, is reporting a piece on how the economy has affected U.S. cities. It picked Camden as its focus.
Producer Yurie Kim, who is based out of the network’s Washington, D.C., office, said that the team had read all about Camden’s troubles and thought Koreans would be interested.
As I wrote in Tuesday's Inquirer, the creation of the Business Growth and Development team a year ago has yielded very few new businesses and development projects in Camden. STORY HERE.
Here's a reason why: Camden High alum John Yingling saw that the city was on the verge of a rebirth and started looking into property he could buy to open up a modern bistro. He found 525 Broadway to be the perfect location. It is just two blocks away from the soon-to-open Cooper Medical School of Rowan University and on a main corridor of the city.
Since last week, more than two dozen state Department of Education officials have been meeting with faculty, staff, and board members of the Camden City School District.
It is part of the state’s Quality Single Accountability Continuum, or QSAC, follow-up review which will determine what, if any, intervention the state will impose on the beleaguered district.
In the latest QSAC performance review, released Feb. 13, the district received failing grades in four of the five categories — instruction and program (7 percent); operations (47 percent); personnel (9 percent), and governance (33 percent). It received 79 percent in fiscal management.
Camden residents opposed to a proposed regional police department collected enough signatures on a petition to force a citywide vote on the issue, but the petition itself was found legally deficient, city officials ruled Friday.
The residents’ group — led by Vance Bowman and Ali Sloan El and backed by Fraternal Order of Police President John Williamson — has 10 days to correct the problems and resubmit the petitions.
If approved when resubmitted, city council would consider the amendment first. If council rejects the ordinance change, voters would consider the matter in November.
The Citizens Community Committee for Public Safety collected almost 2,000 valid signatures from registered voters who support slightly rewording the city police ordinance to read: “There is hereby created and maintained in, for and by the City of Camden a Police Department …“
After a year of courtroom fights, Ace Auto Parts has surfaced as the winner of the Camden towing contract.
The appellate division of the Superior Court of New Jersey ruled today that the city’s first pick for a towing company was right, pushing Original Hargrove Demolition Co. aside.
In February 2011, the city published an 11-page explanation of why it named Ace the “lowest responsible bidder.” Hargrove bid $362,787 and Ace $580,425 for the right to remove and store abandoned, disabled and impounded vehicles for the city for two years.