Springdale Township approval finalizes police merger with Cheswick
Springdale Township commissioners have approved merging the township’s police department with Cheswick’s, effectively ensuring the creation of the new Allegheny Valley Regional Police Department.
Cheswick Council gave its OK to the proposed merger earlier this month.
Township commissioners voted 4-0, with one abstention, to create the new, merged department with the neighboring borough. Commissioner Anthony Rozzano abstained.
Cheswick Council’s approval had been unanimous.
The new department will begin operating at the end of May, township Commissioner Timothy Sweet said Friday. It will be led by the township’s police chief, Mike Naviglia, who has been serving as Cheswick’s interim police chief since Jan. 1.
A four-member board, with two representatives each from the borough and the township, will be formed to oversee the new department.
Naming a chief will be among its first tasks. Naviglia, the township’s chief for 15 years, said there’s no guarantee it will be him.
A lot of administrative work needs to be done, but nothing that would prevent the new department’s creation, Naviglia said. This will be the first merged police department created in Allegheny County since Northern Regional was created 20 years ago, he said.
“It’s a great thing,” Naviglia said. “I think it’s going to work out. Everybody else is going to look at it. They’re all having the same problems. A lot of other places need to start looking at this. Nobody has the money anymore.”
Officials have said the new force will cost both communities less. It will have a $500,000 budget. The borough and township had been spending a combined $672,000 on their respective forces.
“I think it’s a good thing for our township and Cheswick,” Sweet said. “We’re going to have a better police force and both towns will have more money.”
Brian C. Rittmeyer is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Brian at 724-226-4701, [email protected] or via Twitter .