2 of 3 Controversial GPS Units Already Installed in Police Cars

One Macungie Police vehicle is yet to received the new equipment.

In an update to Macungie Council at its Feb. 4 meeting, Mayor Rick Hoffman announced that two of the three private GPS units he has been wanting to have installed in Macungie police cars have been put in place.

All police cars in Lehigh County are equipped with county-monitored GPS systems. The new system, reintroduced at the Jan. 7 meeting, would be additional.

Macungie Police Chief Edward Harry has said that the private units Hoffman is installing pose a security risk to police officers. An unfair labor practices grievance has been filed by the Macungie Police Department bargaining unit as a result.

The software needed to monitor them, however, has not yet been installed.

If completed, Hoffman will be able to monitor borough police cars from his home or from his phone. Macungie Police Chief Edward Harry will have the same ability to monitor cars from police headquarters.

Hoffman said he expects the GPS system in the third borough police car in the next two weeks as the car is rotated in for routine service. 

Macungie resident Marvin Moyer asked where the mayor got the private donations to purchase the units.

"People have the right to know where he got the money," Moyer said.

Hoffman has said that for the one-year contract on the systems he raised the entire amount necessary -- $1,408 -- through donations. Walmart donated $1,000 and the rest came from individuals.

Council President Christopher Becker said the issue could not be discussed further in the public meeting because it was in litigation.

"But this will be back on the table," Becker said.


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