Ald. Bob Donovan

Today the Common Council approved a measure that seeks to change state law to enable the members of the Fire and Police Commission to hire the FPC’s executive director – a power that currently is held by the mayor. In a separate move, the Council also approved hiring seasonal police officers to help increase beat patrol staffing during the busy warmer months, and urging a key change in the city’s police officer recruit training regimen.

Alderman Bob Donovan, chair of the Public Safety and Health Committee and the primary sponsor of the FPC-related legislation (Council file #180185), said he is pleased his colleagues supported the measure, which directs the Intergovernmental Relations Division to seek introduction and passage of state legislation that would change the FPC executive director appointment process.

Between 1885 and 1988 the executive director of the FPC was appointed by FPC members, and Alderman Donovan said he believes strongly that the original process should be reinstated under the law.

“Mayor Norquist had the change in the appointment process made in 1988 so that he could select the head of the Fire and Police Commission,” Alderman Donovan said. “Our legislation seeks to reverse that 1988 move and go back to the city’s original intent when it comes to this critically important appointment.”

Today the Council also approved hiring seasonal part-time police officers who will work primarily as beat patrol officers from May until October – the typically busiest time for police calls, Alderman Donovan said.

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