(PALISADES PARK, N.J.) -- After more than three decades on the job, including nine years as deputy chief, Michael Vietri is officially taking over the reins of the borough's 25-member police force.
Vietri was sworn as police chief Nov. 22 during a ceremony at Borough Hall.
"He's a good man and I think he will do a very fine job," Mayor Sandy Farber said Wednesday.
A 34-year veteran, Vietri has been overseeing the department since his predecessor, Chief John Genovese, retired July 1. During the council meeting, Genovese received a plaque in honor of his 31 years of service to the borough.
Vietri's promotion was recommended by the council's police committee and unanimously approved by the council.
"I think the men respect him. He's tough, but he does his job and all he asks is that they do their job," Farber said.
Vietri said he hopes to build on the strides made in restoring public confidence in a department that was rocked by the convictions of five officers several years ago for orchestrating burglaries.
"I think we're doing very well, but there's always room for improvement," he said.
Since he took over last summer, he said he has seen relations with the business community improve as a result of instituting a "park and walk" detail in the commercial district.
He plans to begin bicycle patrols in the spring along the business strip and the schools, and he hopes to get video cameras installed in patrol cars.
Vietri said he also would like to see the ranks of the department boosted to 32 officers and to be able to give officers increased opportunities for training.
(iSyndicate; The Record; Nov. 23, 2000) Terms and Conditions: Copyright(c) 2000 LEXIS-NEXIS, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights Reserved.