Friday, July 6, 2018

Pottstown Names Markovich Interim Police Chief

Photos by Evan Brandt
Retiring Pottstown Police Chief Rick Drumheller, left, and Mayor Stephanie Henrick congratulate Michael Markovich after being appointed to the post of interim police chief Thursday night.

Pottstown lost a police chief Thursday night, and gained a new interim chief.

Working on the second to last day of his 30 years of service to the borough, Police Chief F. Richard Drumheller received, with good grace, the praise of borough, state and even religious leaders.

Chief since 2013, Drumheller was told by Mayor Stephanie Henrick that "it's well deserved and I will miss you terribly."

Perhaps what I will miss most is your expert guidance, and the ability to help those around you," said Interim Borough Manager Justin Keller, who informed Drumheller that a brick with his name on it would be placed on the walkway in Riverfront Park.

Drumheller was also honored by a triumvirate of state representatives -- Tom Quigley, Tim Hennessey and David Maloney -- all of whom praised his effectiveness and work ethic and who presented him with a resolution passed by the Pennsylvania House of Representatives recognizing his service.

Quigley said he first met Drumheller in 2002 when he was mayor of Royersford and Drumheller was
From left State Rep. Tim Hennessey, Chief Rick Drumheller,
State Rep. Davids Maloney and State Rep. Tom Quigley.
in charge of a regional DUI enforcement detail that Royersford had just joined for the first time.

"The thing that struck me about the chief then, he was coordinating the whole thing, was his calm demeanor, his sense of purpose, and that really impressed me," said Quigley.

Hennessey said Drumheller had delivered the assurance for the people of Pottstown that, as is necessary in these times, that police authority was being administered properly

Maloney said he went to high school with Drumheller, and his record "speaks volumes to what public service is and what it means to our communities."

Bishop Everett Debnam speaks at last night's council meeting.
Later in the evening Bishop Everett Debnam of Invictus Ministries, who is also the police department's chaplain, thanked Drumheller for his service, and for becoming his friend.

Debnam also reminded council that "you get what you pay for" in terms of the next chief of police.

After he spoke, council adjourned into a 25-minute executive session closed to the public to discuss "personnel."

When they emerged, they voted unanimously (council members Rita Paez and Carol Kulp were absent) to appoint Markovich Interim Police Chief at a salary of $110,000 per year. There was no time frame set for how long this appointment will last.
From left, Councilman Joe Kirkland, Mayor Stephanie Henrick
and newly sworn-in Coucilwoman Trenita Lindsay.

My prediction: Look to see them string him along until October, then decide to put his salary in the budget.

Also last night, new Fourth Ward Councilwoman, who was chosen last month to replace Dennis Arms, was sworn in by Mayor Henrick and took her seat on council.

Council also seems inclined to renew the 15-year-old lease with Trilogy Park to run the BMX track in Memorial Park, which will host a Gold Cup national race this weekend, with opening ceremonies at 11 a.m. Saturday.

Mayor Henrick said she will poll the community on her Facebook page about whether they would like to see meetings held in each ward to improve communication. As former councilman Arms reminded us on Twitter, "It's been tried. Every council person I talked to- said it's a waste of time because no one shows up."

And Keller told council that, as instructed, he sent a letter to Digital First Media urging them to re-consider the closure of The Mercury building and moving the newspaper's operations to Exton.

If not successful in changing their minds (he won't be. We're already out.) he said he and Peggy Lee-Clark, director of PAID, will mount "an aggressive campaign to attract high-quality re-development to- this architecturally significant building."

And with that, here are the Tweets:

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations buddy! You'll do great as interim police chief.