Wednesday, November 30, 2011
CMPD Chief Rodney Monroe's House of Cards
It has long been noted on this blog that CMPD's Chief Monroe has run the city's police department like his own fiefdom. Directives and rules be dammed Rodney Monroe does things his way.
The trouble with this mentality is eventually this sort of operational structure will come back to bite you in the checkbook. The ruling in favor of former CMPD Sgt. Tammy Hatley is just the start.
What the Hatley ruling provides is proof that Chief Monroe is operating a rouge department, doing repeated "end runs" around the City Manager Curt Walton and Charlotte City Council.
From the Court Order:
Major Hat Tip to City News Watch for chasing down the court documents.
"It is undisputed that before Chief Monroe came on board, there were four
ranks in the police departments: sergeant; captain; major; and deputy chief. Chief Monroe attempted to add the rank of lieutenant in 2008-2009, with lieutenants assigned as RACs; however, the downturn in the economy prevented the City of Charlotte from authorizing that rank.
Instead, Chief Monroe created temporary RAC positions and staffed those positions not with lieutenants, but with sergeants already on the payroll, providing each with an additional stripe.
CMPD contends that this temporary special assignment was intended as a stop-gap measure until CMPD could adopt and budget a new rank of lieutenant; however, it was undisputed that nearly three years later, when the court conducted the hearing, the issue of approving and funding lieutenants was only then coming on to be heard by city council."
In short Chief Monroe knew that the city budget wouldn't allow his "lieutenant" idea due to the costs associated, so he "created" a rank of staff sergeant. Which by itself might have been ok, except he also "juiced up" the job beyond just additional responsibilities by adding take home cars and extra pay. The promotion ceremony and formal announcement was the final blow.
Again from the Court:
"In the affidavits of Chief Monroe, (He)concludes that(Hatley) was not promoted and discusses his view of promotions under the City Charter. While the court does not take issue with Chief Monroe’s credibility....
While the courts are not to decide summary judgment based on the credibility of the witnesses or the weight it believes a jury might give such evidence, the court cannot find that the averments of Chief Monroe are sufficient to create a genuine issue as to any material fact."
In other words Monroe's excuse is bull shit, and it is Monroe's own hubris that circled around and latched on to his backside.
So what this means to current CMPD RACs is this your job as RAC, the fourth stripe, the take home car, the extra pay are yours to keep unless the CSB and not Chief Monroe says so.
To those who, were RACs and were demoted, lawyer up the feeding is about to begin. To those who were Sergeant RACs and didn't become Lieutenant RACs lawyer up the feeding is about to begin.
You can read the entire court order here and the original filing which is here.
Cedar's Take: CMPD officers have a right to understand the process for promotion and advancement. Since 2008 the rules have varied from day to day. The promotion process in the past was straight forward with set dates for the process to begin and to conclude.
Under Chief Monroe the rules change almost daily and promotions happen whenever his mood suits.
Case in Point: The Department has a Deputy Chief position that has remained vacant for more than a year. But the Chief refuses to name someone to the position because his favored candidates are unqualified, and the qualified candaites are not to his liking.
Lastly: This is only the tip of the iceberg, Monroe's house of cards is starting to come apart.
Cedar's Bonus: The Charlotte Observer's view on the ruling is here.