Proposed changes rile police officers

Glendale police officers are concerned about a proposal being sent to the Civil Service Commission that would broaden some hiring standards for the position of police lieutenant, thereby widening the pool of potential applicants.

The proposal would open recruitment for lieutenants to outside police agencies, amend California Peace Officers Standards and Training certification requirements for sergeants and allow candidates without bachelor’s degrees to apply.

“The items on this particular agenda item have been somewhat contentious,” Human Resources Director Matt Doyle said Wednesday at the Civil Service Commission meeting. “We truly could benefit from having a little bit more time to direct toward this and again hopefully come to some form of a compromise.”

Discussion on the matter was tabled Wednesday night to Oct. 12 amid a chamber packed with rank-and-file officers.

The proposed changes haven’t been received well by some sergeants and their union, the Glendale Police Officers Assn.

Union representatives and their attorney, Richard Shinee, declined to comment on the matter due to ongoing talks with the city and Police Chief Ron De Pompa.

A group of police sergeants recently took a lieutenant’s exam, but just two got promoted, Doyle said.

Doyle declined to say how many sergeants took the promotional exam, but he added that De Pompa was “fairly displeased by the number of people who applied to begin with.”

Police Departments in similarly-sized cities typically find a sufficient number of candidates in-house to promote, he said, adding that it was rare to look outside the agency. But recent police retirements have left multiple vacant lieutenant positions open.

“It really hit us in the managerial ranks,” Doyle said.

Proposed changes to specifications for police lieutenants include offering applicants without a bachelor’s degree two years to complete the degree to meet department requirements, according to a city report.

The current education requirement for the position is a bachelor’s degree, which the Police Department wants to maintain.

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