Proposal to Improve the Process of Selecting the Next Police Director

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The residents of the City of the Elizabeth are offering an amendment to the Mayor’s proposal last week, for the search for a new Police Director. A Public Forum. Let the taxpayers, the residents, and everyday Elizabethans be part of this process. Elizabethans are in the dark for too long and its time for not only our voice to be heard, but for our concerns to be dealt with. The members of this council may not know what it feels like to be a resident without a voice or input in this community. A Public Forum can start the process of fixing the foundation of our issues.

We are merely asking to be part of the process. Right now, the city of Elizabeth has the opportunity to make this right finally. Our city government is a democracy; let's treat this as such. The new proposal will include everyone in the community. We all want what's best for this community.


Former Police Director James Cosgrove was forced to resign earlier this month over evidence that he has used misogynistic and racist language towards staff members and other officers within the department. There is now an opening for a new Police Director. On May 21st, 2019, Mayor Bollwage presented to the council the process developed for selecting the next Police Director for the City of Elizabeth. This process includes a fast approaching application deadline for individuals interested in the position. The application deadline for those interested is June 4th. The current selection process provides for the creation of an oversight committee chosen by the Mayor that will consist of 5 members:

- The City Attorney

- The Business Administrator

- The former Mayor of East Orange

- One member of the Superior Officer Association

- A member of the ranking file

The candidates will have an interview with the Mayor and a final interview with representatives of the council. This process excludes the public and does not directly solve the issues concerning the residents.

Proposed Solution:

We ask to extend the application deadline from June 4th to June 21st and do a public search for the Police Director.

We ask to add members of the community to the selection committee

We ask to have members of the council hold a Public Forum for the residents of Elizabeth to ask questions and voice their concerns about the Police department

We ask to have the candidates respond directly to the people they are seeking to represent.

After the interview portion of the Public Forum finishes, the public will have the opportunity to give input on who should be the next Police Director. Residents will then write the name of the individual they believe should be chosen as the next Police Director on an index card. The public comments are not votes but suggestions from an engaged community and will serve as a purpose to aid the council in their selection for the next Police Director of Elizabeth, NJ.

Benefits to City Government & the Public:

- Bring transparency to the process of choosing a new police director.

- Help Members of the Council to have a more precise indication on who will be the best for the job

- Allow the residents of Elizabeth to express their concerns and get a direct response.

- Bring the community together as we work to solve the issue of racism and misogyny within our Police Department.