Spokane City Council moves toward police leadership changes
The appointment of the Spokane Police Department’s managerial team moves forward Monday as the City Council considers shifting city money to help pay for a new captain’s position and a deputy director of the department’s business services division.
The moves, which are said to save the city $30,000, are part of Chief Frank Straub’s effort to “streamline our operations and continue to create a department that runs more like a private business,” said Monique Cotton, the department’s spokeswoman.
Three positions were eliminated from the city’s budget to create the two positions. The creation of the captain’s position, which is unfilled, is in anticipation of the department’s preliminary plans to move toward a precinct model. If realized, the precincts will be spread around town and be headed by captains.
The deputy director of business services will be Jason Franklin, who has been with the department as a civilian police planner. He will be paid about $65,000 a year.
Carly Cortright, director of the department’s business services, will be “on loan” to the mayor’s office for a number of months working on Mayor David Condon’s My Spokane initiative, according to Condon’s spokesman, Brian Coddington.
Given Cortright’s project management experience, city Administrator Theresa Sanders wanted her in City Hall to work on “customer-serving” initiatives such as utilities billing and signing up for recreational programs through the parks department, and to create a “more consistent one-stop shop.”
The new positions at the department follow the City Council’s action in April, when it narrowly approved the creation of six new departments within the police division, handing more control to the police chief and mayor in how they hire and fire top police administrators.
Currently, along with Chief Straub and Assistant Chief Craig Meidl, police leadership consists of Cmdr. Brad Arleth of the Patrol Division; Cmdr. Joe Walker of the Tactical and Strategic Operations Bureau; Cortright, director of the Business Services Bureau; and Cotton, the department’s director of communications.
These positions are all exempt from Civil Service rules and protections, as is Franklin, the new deputy director.
Last month, the council approved shifting about $80,000 in city funds to create a position for Tim Schwering, the deputy director of Tactical and Strategic Operations under Walker. His position is also exempt.
Also in the department’s command division, but protected by Civil Service rules, are Capt. Judi Carl of the Administrative Services Bureau; Capt. Dave Richards, the Investigative Division commander; Capt. Keith Cummings, Tactical Team commander; and Capt. Dan Torok, of the Tactical Operations Bureau.