PENNSVILLE TWP. —Thanks to the local VFW post, the Pennsville Police Department has a 21st century sign to better communicate with township residents.

Pennsville VFW Post 1952 generously donated the new electronic sign to be utilized by the township and police department for announcements, safety reminders and meeting dates.

The biggest component of the new sign is the ability to download and upload photographs in case of a missing child or person, according to Pennsville Chief Allen J. Cummings, taking communication with the public to a new level.

“The importance of the sign is more than just announcements and safety — the key to the whole thing is the capability of getting those photos out for the public to help if there is ever a missing child,” Cummings said.

Additionally, the sign will provide alerts of school closings during the winter or road detours due to construction.

The sign was donated to the police department after collaborating with the VFW post commander Frank Hofacker, and post members.

“I was talking to Chief Allen Cummings and he was telling me he would like to have an electronic sign in front of the police station so he could alert the public with important information,” Hofacker said Monday afternoon.

Officials will also use the sign to provide dates for community events such as the annual Memorial Day Parade and Septemberfest.

“He could also remind people of safety concerns to buckle up and no texting and driving. This would be a great way to get information out,” Hofacker continued.

After talking with Cummings, the post commander went back to the VFW and discussed with members to see if a sign would be possible.

“At the VFW meeting, the members said we need to do this for the police department and the community,” Hofacker said.

The post held various fundraisers with township auxiliary and together, the VFW was able to purchase the sign.

Since its installation in May, the police chief said he’s displayed messages daily. However, the sign will not be used to announce birthdays or other private displays.

Also, by posting meeting dates and times, residents will know when to attend committee meetings, according to Cummings.

“A lot of people don’t always know when the meetings are and I would love to see more people come out and speak about things that are important to them — people always have something to say,” the chief said, adding that he would like to see more residents attend the meetings.

“The VFW has been more than generous and we are grateful and want to thank them for their donation,” Cummings continued.

The old police department sign — which is at least 50 years old — was donated to the Pennsville Historical Society.

Brittany Wehner may be reached at Follow her on Twitter @brittanymwehner. Find the South Jersey Times on Facebook.