HomeNewsNew 2nd Police District commander visits civic association meeting

New 2nd Police District commander visits civic association meeting

The Take Back Your Neighborhood civic association welcomed the new commander of the 2nd Police District on Monday night.

Capt. Matthew Deacon was joined by Mark Mroz, the community relations officer.

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Deacon told the crowd he is a Lawncrest native who has been with the police department for 12 years. He has worked in the 35th, 24th and 9th police districts and in Internal Affairs. He has been a captain for eight months, spending the last seven months in police radio. He has been at the 2nd for two weeks.

Deacon replaces Capt. Thomas McLean, who has been assigned to the department’s counterterrorism unit.

Mroz invited members to two upcoming events. On Monday, Aug. 5, from 5 to 8 p.m., there will be information tables and other activities at the Target parking lot, Bustleton and Bleigh avenues. Residents of the 2nd, 7th, 8th and 15th districts are welcome to what is a warm-up to National Night Out.

The 2nd district’s National Night Out celebration will take place on Tuesday, Aug. 6, outside Fox Chase Elementary School, 500 Rhawn St. A bicycle ride will kick off at 5:30 p.m. All participants will be entered in a raffle for a new bike. The rest of the activities go from 6 to 8 p.m.

Mroz also announced curfew hours.

Curfew for kids 13-17 is 10:30 p.m. weekdays and midnight weekends.

For kids 12-and-under, curfew is 10 p.m. weekends and 9 p.m. weekdays (9:30 p.m. on summer weekdays).

In other news from the meeting:

• City Councilwoman Maria Quinones Sanchez will hold office hours on Tuesday, Aug. 6, from 4 to 7 p.m. at Max Myers Playground, 1601 Hellerman St.

• State Sen. Tina Tartaglione will be holding a community picnic on Thursday, Aug. 15, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Lawncrest Recreation Center, 6000 Rising Sun Ave. There will be free refreshments, a DJ, back-to-school giveaways and child fingerprinting by the police department. Children must be present to receive a backpack. Call 215-533-0440.

• Neighbors complained about drivers parking on sidewalks and in the wrong direction on two-way streets and young cyclists popping wheelies.

State Rep. Jared Solomon addressed some issues.

Solomon said state and city money is allowing for an expansion of cleanups and illegal sign removals along Castor, Bustleton and Rising Sun avenues. He is working on legislation to address landlord/tenant disputes. Police are ticketing illegally parked trucks, but the problem remains.

The lawmaker is looking forward to the 2nd Police District’s move to the old TruMark Financial Credit Union at 7306 Castor Ave. He said it “makes no sense” for the district to be at Harbison Avenue and Levick Street in the 15th district. The move should be made in early 2020.

“Finally, the 2nd Police District will be in the 2nd,” Solomon said, adding that the district is well staffed with 179 officers.

Solomon is happy that the state budget provided $2.5 million (a 40 percent increase) for the Gun Violence Task Force in Philadelphia.

The legislator is also pleased that PATH and partners will be taking over the former Firstrust Bank at Castor and Cottman avenues.

As for the shuttered Police Athletic League center at Rising Sun and Longshore avenues, he promises a “great announcement” in the near future.

A middle school would be a good addition to the former Fels High School property, Solomon said. A backup plan could be the former Immanuel Lutheran School at 1015 Cottman Ave.

Some people complained about fireworks, with Solomon explaining that state lawmakers legalized the sale of highly taxed fireworks “because we wanted the revenue.”

A woman’s suggestion that the city could gain revenue by allowing owners of single-family homes to convert them to multifamily dwellings was met with swift and stern opposition.

Solomon suggested that the civic group invite Dave Perri, commissioner of the city Department of Licenses and Inspections, to an upcoming meeting to address concerns.

“He probably checks a lot of those boxes,” Solomon said. ••

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