Maplewood Community Board on Police – Membership FAQ

 

Q.            What are the requirements to apply for the Board?

A.            Prospective members must be Maplewood residents and submit an application form to the Township Clerk, along with a resume, signed confidentiality agreement, and statement (250 words or less) setting forth why they would like to serve on the Board and what particular skills they can bring to the Board.  Prospective members may be nominated by an advisory committee charter organization (the Community Coalition on Race, SOMA Action, or SOMA Justice: Addressing Race and Inequality in South Orange and Maplewood) or self-nominated.  Applicants nominated by a charter organization must include a statement of support from that organization; self-nominated applicants should consider submitting a brief statement of support from another Maplewood resident.

Q.            How many members will the Board have?

A.            The Board will consist of six voting members and five non-voting members.  Three voting members will be chosen from nominees submitted by each of the charter organizations (one each); the other three voting members will be chosen from the community.  The non-voting members of the Board will be 2 members of the Township Committee, the Township Administrator and/or her designee, a designee from the Police Department, and a youth member (between the ages of 16 to 21 at the time of appointment).

Q.            How will Board members be chosen?

A.            Each nominee for the Board will be reviewed and considered by the Township Committee.  Nominees will be examined for their (a) demonstrated commitment to the matters addressed by the Board; (b) ability to be fair and thoughtful; (c) overall integrity; (d) engagement in community affairs; (e) skill set to help complete the work of the Board; (f) conflicts of interest; and (g) agreement to sign and adhere to a non-disclosure/confidentiality policy.  Members will be selected by at least a majority vote of the Township Committee to fill the Board seats The Township Committee will strive to ensure the Board is reflective of the Maplewood community.

Q.            How often will the Board meet?

A.            The Board will meet monthly, with special meetings scheduled as required.  It should also be understood that the work of the Board requires a significant amount of time and that members should expect to devote research and review time outside of scheduled meetings.

Q.            Aside from attendance at meetings, what else will be required from members?

A.            Each member will be required to (a) participate in a police ride along, (b) meet with the Chief of Police and/or his designee to understand the operations and data collection of the Maplewood Police Department, (c) commit to reading material in line with the purpose of the Board and the history, culture and concerns of the community, and (d) abide by the terms of a confidentiality/non-disclosure agreement. 

Q.            Will I receive training as a Board Member?

A.            Members will receive education on laws governing public records and public meetings, confidentiality requirements, state and local laws that affect an officer's rights and privacy, case law on stops and detentions, search and seizure and the rights of an arrestee, as well as steps in the criminal justice process including arrest, booking, arraignment, bail, hearings, and trial.

Q.            If appointed, how long will my term last?  Can I be re-appointed at the end of my term?

A.            If appointed, your initial term will last from 1 to 3 years.  At the conclusion of your term, you are eligible to be re-appointed; however, members may serve no more than two consecutive full 3-year terms.