By TEREASA NIMS
Sunday Times Newspapers
WYANDOTTE – New officers, promotions and new police cars are on the horizon at the Police Department.
Conditional job offers were presented to police candidates Kyle Runyon of Big Rapids and Nathan Hiske of Trenton, who ranked highest in the pool of applicants in the written and agility examinations, Police Chief Dan Grant said.
Grant said both men are Ferris State University graduates who earned bachelor’s degrees in Criminal Justice and completed the state accredited police academy.
“We have spoken to the candidates and they are very excited about the opportunity to work with the Wyandotte Police Department,” Grant said.
Their hiring is contingent on passing a physical and psychological examinations.
“I wish these were additional officers,” said Grant, noting that Hiske and Runyon are replacing retired officers.
Officers interested in sergeant promotions took the exam followed by an interview. Scores from both along with seniority points were tallied on Oct. 21. Based on the combined scores, Grant said three people are being promoted.
“With the addition of two sergeants to uniformed patrols, we will have more adequate coverage of our road patrols which will alleviate some overtime when one command officer is on approved leave time and will also minimize times when no supervisory personnel are available on the shifts,” Grant said.
He also requested reinstating one sergeant’s position which will be assigned to the Detective Bureau.
Detective Rick Weise is the first sergeant candidate on the eligibility list and will be assigned to the detective bureau as detective sergeant.
Detective Jerry Yoscovits ranked second highest, but he declined the promotion at this time, Grant said. He will be eligible if future promotions become available.
Officers Jeff Powers and Jerry Conz ranked next highest and are being promoted to sergeants and assigned to a patrol platoon. Each of the three candidates will be on a six-month probation.
Funds for these changes are available in the current year budget without a budget amendment due to vacancies that have occurred in the department since the beginning of fiscal year.
City Administrator Todd Drysdale recommended the promotions, saying that they appeared “necessary to provide effective services to residents.”
Grant said the agency has also reduced lieutenants from five to two in the past three years and now to zero with both remaining lieutenants retiring. The council approved promoting two officers to lieutenant and Grant said he will set up the lieutenant examination in the coming weeks.
Grant also asked the City Council to approve the purchase of three new police vehicles to replace two patrol cars and one unmarked vehicle. They unanimously approved the purchase of the SUVs.
The chief said within the week the department will add two 2015 Chevrolet Tahoes and one 2016 Ford Explorer.
“We have purchased the Chevrolet Tahoes and the Ford Explorers in the past and they have been excellent police vehicles for our fleet,” Grant said.
The cost for the 2015 Tahoe police package is $31,002 which is $3,257 less than the pricing for the 2016 models which is saving us $6,514. The Ford Explorer is $35,400.
Grant said the department is getting the insurance and various items in order before taking possession of the vehicles.