Extreme Makeover might just be an understatement, maybe Extremely Expensive Makeover of the CMPD, considering the city's current budget constraints.
First there was the must have special ordered Ford LTD shipped in all the way from California at a reported cost of $72,989.00, since the former chief's car was "a piece of junk" and a new impala wouldn't do, the chief demanded a LTD and a fully loaded LTD at that.
Then the office, at some where around $16,000.00. Not bad when compared to what they spent over at the Merrill Lynch Division of Bank of America.
Next, Chief Monroe looked at his command staff and didn't see enough diversity so he added a little more color and promoted a couple of black officers without the normal protocol and hired a couple of old friends from Richmond, added cost to the annual budget somewhere around $175,000.00 each year.
Just to be sure he could easily tell who was in their office at the CMPD Law Enforcement Center he had the parking deck reorganized and repainted a cost of something around $10,000.00 to $15,000.00 to give private reserved spaces for command and support staff.
Giving a make over to some 3 dozen unmarked police cars set the taxpayers back another $500,000.00 but gave a few "special" officers a take home police car.
Since the chief wanted to be proud of his command staff, they also needed a makeover and they also needed to be more visible. So now he's spending reported $50,000.00 to give the command staff new uniforms that will distinguish the command staff from the rank and file little people who are just your everyday average cops.
So today we unveil the new "white" uniforms for majors and above.
Soon everyone will know who's in charge of the CMPD because the entire command staff will look like Captain Stubing of the Love Boat.
But the white shirts are just the start, in fact according to CMPD's uniform supplier, it is a whole "new" uniform for the command staff.
Let's just hope he passed on the shorts and slip-on shoes.
If the CMPD Command staff wants to stand out in a crowd the above outfit should do the trick.
Seriously, is there no way to rein in Chief Monroe? City Council seems to turn a blind eye to everything that Chief Monroe does, approving 150 new police officers during Monday's City Council Meeting. If I was a tax payer in Charlotte, I'd start writing some letters to the Charlotte City Council.
I'm sure the new uniforms will be great for CMPD morale. But what about the morale of the city's taxpayers who will have to pay for the Chief's extreme makeover?