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City Councilman Wants To Strengthen Civilian Panel That Oversees Alleged Police Misconduct

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(Credit: Timothy McLaughlin)

(Credit: Timothy McLaughlin)

Mike Dunn Mike Dunn
Mike Dunn is City Hall bureau chief for KYW Newsradio 1060. He covers...
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By Mike Dunn

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A city councilman is floating a potentially controversial idea: putting more teeth in the city’s Police Advisory Commission, the civilian panel that studies allegations of police misconduct.

The Police Advisory Commission was created by executive order of then-Mayor Ed Rendell in late 1994, to look into citizen’s complaints of police misconduct.

City Councilman Curtis Jones says the commission needs to be strengthened with more funding. “We’re going to work with the administration and the FOP, other stakeholders who have brought many of these concerns about the Police Advisory Commission to our attention, to try to take something that is good and make it better.”

Mayor Nutter, whose legislation created the commission two decades ago, isn’t aware change is needed. “I’ve not heard any complaint, either from citizens or the PAC.”

Changes that Jones may push for include better funding and speeding up the time the commission takes to complete investigations.  And he wants it made permanent through a change in the city charter, which would have to be approved by voters.  This past week, Jones delayed his planned formal introduction of the measure.

The head of the FOP, John McNesby, objects to the Councilman’s effort.  He says any funding increase should go to the school district, rather than a commission that, “serves no purpose.”

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