Arbitrator sides with City, cops must change shifts

Posted: May 24, 2011 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , ,

Santa Fe Police (New Mexican file photo by Clyde Mueller)

An arbitrator on Monday ruled the City of Santa Fe can move forward with a proposed shift change for the Santa Fe Police Department’s patrol division — shifting from four 10-hour shifts a week to five 8-hour shifts a week.

The move was challenged (and will still be challenged again through another appeal) by the police union, the Santa Fe Police Officers Association.

The gripe is this. While the police chief has the ultimate authority over such a shift change according to the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the union and City, that can only happen after good faith negotiations.

The union says those good faith negotiations never occurred and the shift change should be barred until that happens.

In this case, former chief Aric Wheeler made the decision back in February and quickly received a “no confidence” vote from the city with that shift change proposal being described as the straw that broke the camels back forcing the vote. Wheeler has since stepped down.

On a side note, I spoke with Santa Fe County Sheriff Robert Garcia on Monday and he says the same shift change his department did in August has been a success financially and with getting more officers on patrol.

  1. stewie griffin says:

    This is a good idea for public safety. This crime ridden city needs more officers on the streets at peak times.

  2. A deputy says:

    Sheriff Garcia did not implement this change which has worked out well for the sheriff’s department it was former Sheriff Greg Solano. While I am dismayed at his problems he was willing to make controversial or tough decisions which the city police often followed suit. The city has always been a follower not a leader. Many Deputies did not like the decision which was forced down our throats but it was a good one and most now realize that.

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