ROCKPORT — The Rockport Police Department is seeking accreditation by the Massachusetts Police Accreditation Commission for the fourth cycle in a row.
Every three years, MPAC-accredited departments across the Commonwealth must undergo a new inspection to maintain their status. Rockport Police has passed each time since it first received the honor in 2005.
To earn accreditation, departments must be in compliance with MPAC's 257 nationally-recognized standards of operation, as well as 55 percent of its 125 optional standards. Those who meet up to 159 required standards are eligible to earn certification. Before being accredited, Rockport Police earned certification in 2003.
Under the leadership of Lt. Mike Morino, who has been in charge of the accreditation process, Rockport Police is in the middle of a self-initiated evaluation process to make sure it was in compliance with all MPAC requirements. From Feb. 4 through 6, a team of MPAC assessors will perform an on-site review of the department's policies and procedures, operations and facilities. The final step before earning accreditation is an in-person review from the MPAC board.
Accreditation is not only is a point of pride for Rockport Police, it also comes with cost-saving benefits for taxpayers. As then Manchester police Chief Edward Conley III told the Gloucester Daily Times last year when Manchester Police first received its accreditation, departments who earn the title are more likely to have insurance points deducted than those without.
Essex also earned accreditation for the first time last year. Gloucester had been a self-assessing participant in the program but is working to become accredited, a goal of its new chief, Conley.
"MPAC accreditation is a great honor and recognition for the department, and we look forward to the visit from the assessors next month,” Rockport police Chief John Horvath said in a prepared statement. “I am proud of the hard work and commitment to excellence displayed by everyone in the department that has gotten us to this point.”
Michael Cronin may be contacted at 978-675-2708, or firstname.lastname@example.org.