Instead of a captain, the Brainerd Police Department will have a deputy police chief.
The Brainerd City Council Monday unanimously approved the job description for the deputy chief, which would replace the captain's position as the department's second-highest ranking officer.
The deputy police chief would plan, schedule and supervise the organization and functioning of all divisions of the police department and ensure a coordinated program of law enforcement. The deputy chief would assume management duties of the chief of police as assigned or during the chief's absence.
The minimum requirement for the position is that an applicant must have five years full-time experience with the Brainerd Police Department.
The position was recommended by Police Chief John Bolduc, who said the Brainerd Police Department is the only department of its size in Minnesota that doesn't have structure where the second in command is a non-union, confidential employee.
"With the retirement of Capt. (Lyman) Dahl, there was a good opportunity to look at the structure of the department and make changes that would benefit the future," Bolduc said. Dahl retired from the captain's position June 30.
The city received a letter from Les Kundo, business agent with Teamsters Local 346, which represents the police department supervisors in the collective bargaining agreement with the city. Kundo wrote that the job function of a deputy chief is the same as a captain and therefore should remain under the jurisdiction of Teamsters Local 346.
Speaking before the Brainerd Personnel and Finance Committee Monday, City Attorney Tom Fitzpatrick said because of the administrative duties of the deputy chief and the fact that whomever fills the position will work closely with the chief, it was his opinion that the position should be considered a confidential employee and would be excluded from the collective bargaining unit.
Fitzpatrick noted that if the Teamsters union or the city can't come to an agreement, the issue could be settled by a mediator.
The Brainerd Police and Fire Civil Service Commission will come up with a timeline for testing for the deputy chief position.
MATT ERICKSON can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 855-5857.
Brainerd Dispatch ©2013. All Rights Reserved.