Over the past 14 months, I have had regular monthly meetings with Director Halliday. These meetings have been typically one-on-one. On a few of the most recent meetings, Bob Gilbert accompanied me. The purpose of these meetings has been to not only maintaining a working relationship between AHPA and management, but also to discuss issues and concerns that arise throughout the membership and agency.
This past Wednesday, June 1, I met with Director Halliday to follow up on some issues from our previous meeting. The first item was the investigations within HPD that followed the Contact Tracking Form audit that occurred several months back (also referred to as the TraCS audit). As I mentioned at the last Board meeting, it was the position of the AHPA that the manner at which the investigations and subsequent discipline were administered was unacceptable. This same message was relayed to Lt. Col. Hegarty during a meeting I had with him on May 20. I indicated that the manner of the investigations and resulting discipline was outside the norm and did not take into account the lack of adequate training and accountability within the TraCS/Contact Tracking program, as well as some inconsistencies that occurred during the audit with regards to reconciling discrepancies. Additionally, it was apparent that only a select few were singled out in the process, calling into question the perception of “targeting.” During that meeting with Lt. Col. Hegarty, I was explained how the process was suppose to unfold, essentially allowing those who were under investigation ample time to review the case file in order to provide a memo explaining the discrepancies in enforcement contacts versus contact tracking forms. Lt. Col. Hegarty agreed that what he was hearing from me was not what was to occur and he had informed me he would re-assess the situation and make a decision. That decision was made the following week when he informed HPD staff that all investigative packets were to be returned to Division and the process placed on hold until further evaluation. Since then, the decision has been made that all investigations resulting from the audit will be terminated and those employees that were involved will not be receiving discipline.
According to Lt. Col. Hegarty, the audit will continue, but it will only be an audit to determine what corrective training needs to take place to avoid a repeat. This was a direct result of our meeting and voicing a concern on behalf of AHPA. During my meeting with the Director, I again reiterated the points about the “TraCS audit” investigations, stating that Lt. Col. Hegarty had made the correct decision to put a hold on the process until he can assess it, taking all factors into consideration.
The other issue discussed was the perceived divide between CI and HP, with regards to mission and purpose. I explained to the Director that it was clearly evident to the troops that there appears to be some disunity between the two Divisions. While this is not necessarily creating animosity between co-workers, it is causing confusion; particularly at a time when this agency does not need more confusion and stress.
A question I posed to the Director was the specific role of Deputy Director Young within the administration. I was told his role was to take over the day-to-day operations of the agency. While this has not entirely happened as of yet, Director Halliday indicated that full implementation of this plan would take place very soon.
The final issue that was discussed was the vacant District 12 Commander position in HPD. Again, this was a topic during my meeting with Lt. Col. Hegarty on the 20th. When I asked Lt. Col. Hegarty about allowing the only Captain with a job interest card in for the position to take that position, I was told there were no issues with that happening from him. I have also heard, although as of yet I have not been able to meet with Lt. Col. Stanhope to confirm, that there are no issues with the transfer from CID. With that information, I asked the Director why it has taken so long and still no decision has been made to fill what is an important position with HPD. The discussion was positive; the Director listened to my input on the situation, and indicated his support for filling the District 12 Commander position. By the positive tone of the discussion, I am confident this will happen, and on behalf of our members in D-12, I will keep pressing.
Updates will follow as information is obtained.