02-08 chief harvey-01

Palestine Police Chief Andy Harvey

Palestine Police Chief Andy Harvey, who was one of three finalists for police chief of Palm Bay Florida Police Department, will be staying in Palestine; Nelson Moya, veteran Palm Bay officer, and interim chief was chosen and sworn in by Palm Bay City Council Tuesday.

Harvey, 49, who celebrates his second anniversary this month as PPD chief has been a finalist for two police chief jobs outside Palestine in the last nine months; Pharr, Texas last November, and Palm Bay in July.

As PPD Chief, Harvey earns $105,000 a year. In his time in Palestine, some of Harvey's most visible accomplishments have been implementing a new fleet-system for police vehicles, the founding of UNIDOS Palestine, a latino-based outreach program; and a cite-and-release program for marijuana offenses of under one ounce.

Additionally, Harvey was appointed to the Law Enforcement Immigration Task Force in May of last year. The group consists of roughly 100 police chiefs and sheriffs nationwide who advise the federal administration and Congress on how immigration policies affect local law enforcement and public safety.

“We're very fortunate to have a police chief that is high enough quality to be considered for such big jobs,” Palestine Mayor Steve Presley told the Herald-Press Wednesday. “We will benefit from his experience and quality for as long as we have him.”

Calls made to Harvey by the Herald-Press were not returned.