Brookfield is expected to have a brand new deputy chief of police next month, and Lt. Michael Manescalchi is expected to be that person. At the next meeting of the village board on June 12, trustees will vote to create the new position of deputy chief, an idea floated during workshops for the 2006-07 budget in March.
Police Chief Thomas Schoenfeld told trustees that creating a deputy chief position had become essential because of an increased administrative load for the department in recent years. Currently, the department employs a chief and two lieutenants as the senior command staff. Schoenfeld, who does not have any support staff or secretary, said he was “overwhelmed at the administrative level.”
The village board has already given tacit approval for the plan by including the expenses involved in the personnel shift in the budget for fiscal year 2006-07, which began May 1.
According to a memo from Schoenfeld to trustees and discussed at the board’s Committee of the Whole meeting on May 22, he was asking for Manescalchi’s salary to be increased by $3,700 when he is named deputy chief. The pay raise, Schoenfeld, said, would be offset by the fact that the new position is exempt from the department’s overtime and holiday pay program.
“The law enforcement common practice of having a deputy chief position within a police department’s structure provides unlimited advantages,” Schoenfeld wrote in his memo to the board. “[The department] would function more efficiently and safely, with enhanced liability coverage of more supervision, while addressing the increased workloads and compliances imposed upon today’s law enforcement agencies.”
Among the initiatives Schoenfeld said could be accomplished with the restructuring were updating school crisis response plans and village disaster plans; establishing a seasonal tactical unit to assist in drug and gang enforcement; creating a combined police/fire central dispatch center; establishing an internal affairs division to deal with labor and disciplinary issues; creating a police department Web site; and increasing opportunities for officer training.
Promoting Manescalchi to deputy chief would set in motion a variety of moves within the department, which Schoenfeld outlined for the village board during a March 29 budget workshop.
According to a job description given to village trustees and the press, the deputy chief will be responsible for the daily administrative functions of the police department that are not handled by the chief. He’ll also supervise the department’s two lieutenants, play a crucial role in departmental budgeting and direct and supervise the department’s internal disciplinary procedures, among other things.
In addition to deputy chief, Schoenfeld is planning to formally designate one lieutenant each to operations and administration. The operations lieutenant will be responsible for the day-to-day direction of the police officers, according to a job description given to trustees at the May 22 meeting. The administrative lieutenant, meanwhile, will supervise civilian department employees, lead training efforts, manage the department’s Records Division and write and review department policies among other things.
One current sergeant will be promoted to lieutenant to fill Manescalchi’s position, two patrolmen will be raised to sergeant and a new patrolman will be added to the payroll. Due to some expected retirements of senior officers, Schoenfeld told trustees he expected the financial implications of all of the personnel moves to be a wash, since more junior officers will be stepping into those roles.
Most of the questions from trustees following Schoenfeld’s brief presentation at the May 22 Committee of the Whole revolved around the wording of the proposed ordinance which creates the deputy chief position. The deputy chief, according to the ordinance, which mirrors the state statute, will be appointed by the chief of police with the approval of the village manager.
The appointment “shall be from any rank of sworn, full-time officers of the village’s police department, but must have at least five years of full-time service as a police officer in that department.”
If, at any time, the deputy chief is removed from the post, he will revert to his current rank. The deputy chief, however, will remain eligible, regardless of rank, to take promotional exams and be promoted to a higher rank without having to resign as deputy chief.