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  • CPD DROP article

    Interesting article. Sounds like things are worse than were previously known. Maybe they will figure out a way to get some classes going.


    Police To Lose Nearly 100 Veteran Officers In 2011

    By Denise Yost
    Managing Editor, nbc4i.com
    Published: April 30, 2009

    COLUMBUS, Ohio—The Columbus Division of Police is on the verge of losing thousands of years of combined experience.

    The deferred retirement option plan—or DROP—started in 2003 as a way for officers to put more money toward retirement. But those who entered are required to retire eight years after they signed up. The first exists will occur in 2011.

    The murders of Lynn Vest and Jeremy Pickens made headlines back in 1980.

    It’s a cold case that Sergeant Jeff Sacksteder still lingers over.

    “Anytime you lose your daughter and grandchild in one swoop, that’s pretty agonizing,“ Sacksteder said.

    The case file has grown and Sacksteder keeps up with all of the details. It’s one of 600 cold case in Columbus on any given day.

    “You need to have the ability to know where to go and does this case have any legs,“ Sacksteder said.

    He knows most of the cases by heart. It’s a skill that can only be learned with time—no matter how much training you have.

    “The biggest thing is the people. It’s the networking. It’s the contacts and sources that you’ve been able to obtain from being in this position over ten years,“ Sacksteder said.

    When Sacksteder leaves through the DROP program, 41 years of experience and 15 years in cold cases go with him.

    In 2011, about 100 police officers will retire nearly all at once.

    “I think the city has to be aware that they are going to lose some senior positions,“ Sacksteder said.

    In 2007, police conducted a study and found that in order to balance the city’s growth with DROP losses, the city needed to appoint 580 recruits between 2007 and 2010. So far, there have only been 159 recruits—87 in 2007 and 72 in 2008.

    “I think it’s been a good warning for the city for them to know how many people are going to retire and take advantage of that,“ said Fraternal Order of Police President Jim Gilbert.

    But due to budget constraints, the city has no police recruit classes scheduled this year.

    “2010 is crucial to try and get classes in and that’s what we hope to do, but it’s driven by resources,“ said Antone White, spokesperson for the Department of Public Safety.

    White said that if the economic crisis lifts, the city will try to push as many recruit classes through as it can.

    “We continue to recruit. We’re continuing to do what we need to do to keep people in position,“ White said.

    But the city can’t guarantee there will be classes and Gilbert remains skeptical. He points out other cities like Cincinnati are graduating classes in anticipation of DROP despite budget issues.

    “We’re basically letting citizens down because we’re not going to be able to get there as quickly. Our response time is going to go up. The priority of the calls and the services we provide as officers is going to be affected,“ Gilbert said.

    Even if the city graduates new recruits, Sacksteder said there will be challenges with a young police force.

    “I think in 2012, the Division of Police will have a significant learning curve drop off, but I think shortly thereafter, it will catch up,“ Sacksteder said.

    He’s spearheading a project to put all of the cold case files into a database to make the transition easier for his successor.

    “I can assure that whoever may person is that follows me will be—he’ll know which cases I think are the most serious and that need to be resolved,“ Sacksteder said.

    Although there are no classes in the budget, the city holds recruiting drives. There are two on Saturday:

    Friendship Missionary Baptist Church
    1775 W. Broad Street
    10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

    Stonewall Columbus
    1160 N. High Street
    (2nd Floor Community Room)
    1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

  • #2
    I think we have an uphill battle in putting you guys in white shirts, which is a tragedy. I'd be willing to bet that the city will not take any COPS grant money due to stipulations the city would have to meet and without the income tax increase we may be facing massive layoffs. But like is said in the article, the CPD's of Ohio are putting classes together in anticipation of DROP. Hopefully Mayor Coleman will see the importance of this issue.

    The citizens don't understand that you will pay one way or another. If the city doesn't increase the income tax, you will be charged for garbage pickup and that will cause city employees to be laid off. Snow plow drivers gone, maybe 500 public safety employees gone. That is a HUGE loss in revenue to the city and not to mention the safety and quality of life concerns. What these boneheads against the tax don't get is that we are talking .5%. If you make 50,000 a year its an additional $250 over the course of 12 months, or 5 dollars a week. People say they cannot afford this but they will explain why they can't pay while they talk to you choking down a cigarette that they smoke 2 packs a day of, or a 4 dollar latte from starbucks they just MUST have everyday.
    But if these people were in the midst of being laid off, they would be the first to stick out their hands waiting for their cut of the money from the government.


    • #3
      "I'd be willing to bet that the city will not take any COPS grant money due to stipulations the city would have to meet"

      i've been wondering about that since the new chief said it in an interview with nbc4i (i think it was). didn't they already use some of the money for this last class, or did that come from somewhere else? if they'd already have to meet the stipulations, what would be the difference? although, to be fair, i have no idea what the stips are or if they increase depending on the amount of money involved or so forth.
      Last edited by TheOneTheOnly; 05-01-2009, 05:54 PM. Reason: trying to figure out how to quote properly


      • #4
        I say increase the taxes of everyone in franklin county by 2 dollars and have it go straight to the police department.

        No, maybe I can't win, maybe the only thing I can do is just take everything he's got. But to beat me, he's gonna have to kill me, and to kill me, he's gonna have to have the heart to stand in front of me, and to do that, he's gotta be willing to die himself and I don't know if he's ready to do that. I don't know, I don't know.
        Rocky Balboa
        Rocky IV (1985)

        Id rather be judged by 12 than carried by 6


        • #5
          does any one know the stipulations the city would have to meet?


          • #6

            Doesn't really matter now if they didn't apply for the funds, the application period is closed. If nothing else it would have prevented layoffs but I'm not sure if the grants were applied for.


            • #7
              Originally posted by JKralC104 View Post

              Doesn't really matter now if they didn't apply for the funds, the application period is closed. If nothing else it would have prevented layoffs but I'm not sure if the grants were applied for.
              Go to the city's website and go to city council. Then go to agenda and highlights for the end of april meeting. It says that city council excepted the 4 million dollars earmarked for the recovery act however I think its being used for technology and a few other unnesscary things. Not for the hiring of new officers!!!


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