By David Madden

CAMDEN, N.J. (CBS) – Camden County officials have, again, extended a deadline for people to apply to join a new county police department that will patrol the streets of the city of Camden. They have also tendered a proposed agreement that could allow more current Camden city cops to make the transition and have union representation to boot.

Current officers have until the end of the month to approve the proposal, hammered out between the county and some FOP leaders mostly on the state level. County freeholder director Lou Cappelli says the deal would lift a cap limiting hiring to 49% of those now working for the city.

“What it does is allow police officers to come to the new department with a salary very similar to what they’re being paid right now.”

Camden FOP head John Williamson is willing to abide by the rank and file’s decision, although he’s not happy.

“Although we were attempting to negotiate, this was more or less a take-it-or-leave-it offer from the county.”

Meanwhile, applicants now have until April 1st to sign up, union or no, which could delay the planned springtime deployment of the new force.

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