“Our hope is to have an organizational meeting this week,” Chief Greg Turley said. “The foundation can do things the city can’t do.”
He said Pell City attorney Lance Bell, the former municipal judge, is spear-heading efforts to establish the Pell City Police Department Foundation as a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization.
“That way any donations are tax deductible,” Turley said.
He said he did a lot of research about police foundations, and found foundation groups across the country that supported local law enforcement agencies.
He said there are people in the community who have already agreed to serve on a committee to help start the non-profit foundation.
Those who have agreed to serve on the committee include Bell, Holland Powell, Judy Ellison, Barry Collins, Lyle Harmon and Don Perry.
At Monday morning’s council meeting, city officials approved the support for a Pell City Police Department Foundation.
Councilman James Jenkins said he liked the idea of starting a foundation for the Police Department.
“You have a good group of people on the board,” he told Turley at last week’s work session.
Turley said he believes in the foundation program and it will help the Police Department serve the community better.
“It’s a great way for the community and police to share in the innovation and progress of the Police Department,” he said.
Turley gave an example of how a foundation and a Police Department can work together for the good of the community.
He said a Police Department in a neighboring state was having a rash of car break-ins. That department’s foundation provided police with enough money to purchase surveillance cameras. The surveillance cameras were so effective the foundation provided additional funds for more cameras, which helped reduce car thefts and break-ins.
Turley said foundation money can help secure items that are not budgeted, or things the city doesn’t have the funds for, like the Police Department’s annual banquet, which recognizes police and community volunteers.
He said the foundation can help the department fill immediate needs for unbudgeted items.
“Less than 2 percent of our budget is for equipment,” Turley said.
For more information about the Pell City Police Department Foundation program, call the Police Department at 205-884-3334.
Contact David Atchison at firstname.lastname@example.org.