At last night’s Board of Supervisors meeting, we learned that Police Chief Andy Chambers would resign from the Tredyffrin Twp Police Department, effective December 20, 2011.
Chairman Bob Lamina read a prepared statement that indicated that Chambers made this personal decision to resign while serving a four-day suspension. Last week, the supervisors had suspended Chambers for allowing his 16-year old son to drive a township police car, and his failure to report the incident to the Board of Supervisors. The son was involved in an accident with the township vehicle but Chambers had taken responsibility for all associated costs (towing, repair, etc.) and the car is back in service.
As I have previously stated, and do so again – Andy Chambers is a good guy. Did he have a momentary lapse in judgment? Yes. But now, unfortunately he feels that the price for his mistake is resignation. I do not think that Chambers was under any pressure from the supervisors to resign. As far as the supervisors were concerned, the four-day suspension had settled the matter for supervisors.
I cannot imagine how difficult the last couple of weeks have been for Andy Chambers and his family. We all make mistakes in our lives but most live with the consequences privately. Chief Chambers’ mistake became public and the public scrutiny of his actions, no doubt painful for him and his family. As Lamina read in his statement, Chambers decided that his retirement was the right thing to do for the Tredyffrin police department and for the community. I am guessing that Chief Chambers’ suspension served as an opportunity for personal reflection on he concluded the decision to leave the police department was the right answer for him and his family.
I thank Chief Chambers for his 30 years of service to the community; and offer him best wishes for the future. And, for the record . . . in my book, you still are a ‘good guy’.
In other news from the supervisors meeting, the township budget was approved for 2012. Originally, the budget contained a 6.9% millage tax increase for 2012 but in the final budget, the supervisors lessened the increase to 3.5% millage tax increase. The final budget increase was shaved by reducing professional services and by reducing police hours. The 2012 township budget passed with a 6-1 vote. EJ Richter was the only supervisor to vote against the budget, stating that she was opposed to any tax increase.
The Board of Supervisors meeting marked the final supervisors meeting for Chairman Bob Lamina. After serving 13 years on the Board, Lamina did not seek re-election in the last election and will complete his term at the end of December. Several former supervisors attended last night’s meeting including John Shimrak, Judy DiFilippo, Paul Drucker and John Bravacos. Former and current supervisors joined members of the public and township staff at a reception following the meeting to thank Lamina for his years of service to the community.