There are not many towns in the Garden State that have the distinction of being known as one of the safest in the country. However, Brick Township has made the list for a number of years.  Now, officials are hoping to retain that title.

A recent rise in violent drug and gang activity has shown up at various spots in the town, especially centered in and around multi-family housing developments.  Mayor Steve Acropolis and the council recently rolled out a four pronged approach to help stop violence dead in its tracks.

The first prong was when Mayor Acropolis previously hosted a few meetings with some associations and promoted the idea of reinstituting the Police Selective Enforcement Team.

The second prong was the redeployment of the Selective Enforcement Team (SET) that was put back into action this summer. This fulfilled a promise the Mayor made to the 2011 Council that said if we are able to bring our police officer numbers up, the SET Team will be back in action. That occurred with the replacement of several officers that had retired recently.  There were ongoing budget issues in the community that have since been rectified.

The third prong of the four prong approach will be for Mayor Acropolis to host a round table summit with the Chief of Police, representatives from the Township’s condominium associations and the Township Council Public Safety Committee to discuss the problems, including but not limited to gang and drug activity. The panel will also discuss what avenues are available to the Township and the condo associations to combat these problems.

Acropolis says "the only way we can combat this is to have the participation of everyone – the Administration, the Council, the Police and the Associations. We have to know what options we all have available and how we can work together to begin moving in a positive direction.”

The fourth prong will be to host another residents’ meeting with any and all residents of the affected communities that want to come to a town hall type meeting where we can listen to the residents and also interact with them on an informal basis.

“At the end of the day, our main duty is to make sure there is a high quality of life in our town and that starts with public safety,” said Mayor Acropolis. “Residents can’t have a high quality of life if they don’t feel safe. We have been largely successful in the community at this and I am confident that we are going to make great strides in our condo associations.”

Mayor Acropolis tells us he hopes to hold the round table meeting in September.