Police & Fire

New Union County Police Chief Appointed

l. to r. Dawn Packan, Tyler Debbie, Jim Debbie, New Police Chief James C. Debbie, and Freeholder Chairman Bruce Bergen. Credits: Jim Lowney, County of Union

UNION COUNTY, NJ -- James Christopher Debbie, a 29-year veteran of the County Police Division, has been appointed effective immediately as its police chief, County Manager Alfred J. Faella announced.

Debbie, who becomes the County’s 10th police chief in the Police Division’s history, has served as the officer in charge since 2015. He will be responsible for supervising a police force of 73 sworn officers and 25 civilians. His appointment is.

“I would like to thank the Freeholder Board and County Manager for their support and confidence,” Debbie said. “In this era, the County faces a complex set of security concerns and the County Police have evolved to become a lead agency in providing public safety and homeland security services to the region.  I look forward to working with our various partners in meeting these challenges, protecting the public and providing our services.”

Sign Up for E-News

Debbie joined the County Police Department in 1988, became a detective in 1997, a sergeant in 2003, lieutenant in 2007 and captain in 2013. Along the way, he supervised detectives, Special Investigations/Narcotics, criminal investigations, internal affairs, and other high profile functions of the departments. He was also assigned to the Essex-Union Auto Theft task Force, and supervised and conducted plainclothes street narcotics operations. As officer in charge for the past two years, he was the executive officer of County Police, and responsible for the day to day operations, answering to Department Director Andrew Moran. Debbie succeeds Daniel Vaniska, who retired in 2015 after serving as the division’s Police Chief for 13 years.

The County Police division falls under the Department of Public Safety, and provides a variety of services to the County as a whole and the region, including:

*Cost-saving Dispatch Services for twelve EMS agencies, six fire departments and three law enforcement agencies;

*The Union County Ballistic Unit, a state-of-the-art operation that comprehensively analyzes weapons evidence, including bullets, shell casings and firearms, and provides real-time actionable intelligence to investigators and agencies;

*UC MARINE 1 and 2 which patrols County and regional waterways—including the Arthur Kill--to provide regional Homeland Security services;

*Arson Squad—important investigatory service to Fire agencies;

*Bomb Squad----vital homeland security service, recently featured in the response to the terrorist/bomb incident in Elizabeth;

*County Police—including all their functions---patrol, traffic, enforcement, etc.

*Investigative Division;

*Special Operations Unit—emergency response team.

*Child Safety Seat operations.


TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News


Upcoming Events

Sat, March 24, 10:00 AM

Burent Middle School , Union

Union County Wide - March for Our Lives

Government Law & Justice

Fri, April 6, 6:00 AM

Snyder Academy of Elizabethtown, Elizabeth

Echoes of Freedom Art exhibit to open at Snyder ...

Arts & Entertainment Giving Back

Wed, April 18, 6:00 PM

Linden Public Library, Linden

Friends of Linden Library annual book sale

Arts & Entertainment Other

Free Citizenship Workshop to be Held This Saturday in Elizabeth

March 19, 2018

ELIZABETH, NJ - A free Citizenship Workshop will be held this Saturday, March 24, at the Santa Isabel Lutheran Church from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. located at 908 East Jersey Street in Elizabeth.

The Citizenship Drive is an annual event that assists eligible residents to apply for naturalization. Immigration attorneys will be present to screen eligibility and trained volunteers will assist in the ...

Teacher Training at Trailside

MOUNTAINSIDE, NJ  - Teacher Training programs at Trailside will be offered this spring for teachers of students in Kindergarten through grade twelve starting March 15.

Project WET, a teacher training program for teachers K – 12 will be offered on Thurs. March 15 from 9 a.m.. to 3 p.m.  This workshop will provide the necessary tools, resources, and lessons for teachers ...

Daylight Savings Time Begins this Weekend - Remember to Turn Your Clocks Forward

ELIZABETH, NJ - The winter months are about to come to an end. You know spring is definitely around the corner when Daylight Savings Time begins. A reminder to everyone to turn your clocks forward one hour tonight when you go to bed. Daylight Savings time officially begins at 2 a.m. Sunday morning. 

While many will dread losing that hour of sleep, that extra hour of daylight will be ...

Information on Parking and Traffic for Saturday's 'March for Our Lives' Event

March 23, 2018

UNION, NJ – It is anticipated that several hundred people or more will participate in the Union County March for Our Lives event on Saturday morning in Union.

Students, teachers, parents, clergy and public officials from all over Union County will be walking from Burnet Middle School to Town Hall in an anti-gun violence march.

Parking will be available in the following ...

Hillsborough: Suspended HS Athletic Director Charged with Theft

March 20, 2018

HILLSBOROUGH, NJ - Suspended Hillsborough High School Athletic Director Michael Fanizzi has been arrested and charged with the theft of $10,704 in athletic event receipts over a four-year period from 2013-2017, according to Somerset County Prosecutor Michael H. Robertson.

Fanizzi, 53, a resident of Conover Way in Hillsborough who had been athletics director for 14 years,, had been suspended ...

'Trying' explores age, youth and points of history in poignant production

‘Trying’ explores youth, age and points of history in poignant production

By Liz Keill

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ – The George Street Playhouse presents an engrossing, two-character play based on the real life of Francis Biddle, former Attorney General.

Biddle, a Harvard educated lawyer, served under Franklin Roosevelt and later Harry Truman during the Nuremberg Tribunal. His ...

Visit Union County’s Green Online Shop and Celebrate Earth Day with a New Compost Bin or Rain Barrel

March 23, 2018

Union County gardeners looking for a good Earth Day project can visit the new Union County Means Green online shop now and order a new compost bin or rain barrel at 50% off the retail price.

“Composting food scraps and harvesting rainwater are two effective ways to improve soil health and conserve water,” said Freeholder Chairman Sergio Granados. “Offering these compost bins ...