Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Goshen Council to consider Police Department restructuring, Rainy Day move Monday

Posted on Dec. 29, 2013 at 12:00 a.m.

GOSHEN — The administrative level of the Goshen Police Department could be in for a shake-up with the creation of two new positions.

The Goshen City Council will convene for a special year-end meeting at 5:30 p.m. Monday, Dec. 30, to hear Police Chief Wade Branson’s request to rearrange several positions at the policy-making level.

Branson laid out his proposal in a memo to council members.

Currently, the department has two assistant chiefs. Branson said he intends to remove one of those assistant positions and not replace a currently vacant detective captain position in order to create the new division chief positions.

The new positions will essentially be a lower tier of upper policy-making staff, Branson said. One of the division chiefs will oversee patrol and the other investigations.

Branson said in the message to the council that the restructuring will help improve communication and efficiency within the department.

Branson said the division chief positions will be salaried positions that will save the department money in the long run. The salaries of the new positions will fall between those of an assistant chief and captain.

Since funds for the department have already been approved for 2014, Branson said he will also not need to ask the council for an additional appropriation to cover any salary or benefits for the new positions.

By eliminating an assistant chief’s salary and the salary and overtime for a detective captain, Branson said he’s confident the difference will more than cover the two positions.

In short, the restructuring only moves money that’s already been approved for the next year.

Branson said he intends for the division chiefs to be paid $59,637.50.

In other business Monday, the council will be asked to approve a resolution to transfer $500,000 from the city’s rainy day fund to the 2014 general fund budget.

In a memo to council members, Clerk-Treasurer Tina Bontrager said the transfer was already approved with the adoption of next year’s budget but that the city’s representative from the department of local government finance told her she had two options for moving the money.

The council could approve the transfer this year so it could be shown as revenue in the 2014 budget or the DLGF representative could remove it to the 2014 general fund budget to be processed as an additional appropriation next year.

Bontrager said she prefers the first option, since the council already approved the transfer. The first option would also save the city publication costs by not having to go through the additional appropriation process, she said.

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