The Board of Commissioners voted to take 6 officers who are currently working in court security and put them back on the road!!!  This is a great day!  Shiawassee County will once again have a road patrol!  Thank to all of the commissioners who worked hard to make this happen!!!

Here’s what the Argus press posted earlier today, prior to the vote.

I’ll post more information (and correct errors) as I learn of them!

[Update 5/21-

I’ve learned that unbeknownst to the public we were on track to exceed the courthouse security budget by around $180,000 this year.  The additional money for this was being provided “out of the sheriff’s budget”.  Just to be clear this happened because union contracts are written in such a way that when layoffs occur the employees with the lowest seniority (and usually pay) are laid off first.  My intent here is not to complain about the union, but rather the county officials who ignored this reality.

My questions/issues are as follows:

  1. Why wouldn’t the budget, posted on the county website, be amended/updated to reflect this.   My opinion-Because the public would completely freak out a about cutting the road patrol while increasing courtroom security spending by $180k/year.  Please note that the actual security budget showed a cut from $144,627 to $52,642.  Based on what I’ve been reading it sounds like spending was increased to around $232,000.
  2. Who in their right mind would actually allow this to happen?  In other words, why wasn’t privatizing security considered BEFORE cutting the road patrol?  My opinion-Because they wanted to pay more to maintain the status quo first.  For the record, I’m against privatization, but would favor it over cutting our road patrol.  What elected official would actually choose this option?
  3. How does the Sheriff have all this extra money to throw around for courthouse security?  I kind of hoped that the priority would be getting cops on the road.  Sadly, that does not seem to be the case.

Please remember the following as you read through these questions-Last years budget was devised by one or two commissioners and approved by a majority that no longer exists.  Click here to see who voted to eliminate your road patrol, and Click here to see who though their healthcare benefits were more important than your public safety.  If they’re not on one of these lists, they’re working hard to make things better.

The other thing that I learned is that almost all of the laid off deputies have found jobs elsewhere.  Thank god for that.



An Anonymous Letter Arrived Today

I received an anonymous letter in the mail today.  No return address, sent from a post office several counties away…

[Update 5/14 @ 8:43 – I received an email from the author of this letter asking me to take it down.  I told her that I would be happy to do so, and thanked her for her efforts to hold our elected officials accountable.]