Ingham County Sheriff's Deputy dies in the line of duty

- With excerpts from the Lansing State Journal

Ingham County Sheriff's Deputy Grant Whitaker, 25, died in the line of duty Dec. 7 due to injuries sustained in a high speed pursuit.

Whitaker was pursuing Stockbridge resident John Coryell Kelsey II when his patrol car left the road and struck a tree. Kelsey faces charges of driving with a suspended or revoked license causing death and first-degree fleeing police. The 34-year-old was arraigned in 55th District Court and bond was set at $1 million.

According to preliminary reports, a deputy in an unmarked vehicle began chasing an SUV for a traffic violation on Chapman Road, west of M-52. Whitaker, who was in a fully marked cruiser, joined the chase. The crash happened on Dexter Trail shortly after 2:10 a.m.

Kelsey, who remained at large after the accident and was later arrested, has multiple previous convictions for fleeing police and driving with a suspended/revoked license.

Whitaker, who was with the department for 18 months, was previously a Stockbridge Police Officer. He is survived by his parents: Clyde Whitaker and Mary (McGinn); siblings Aaron (Emily) Whitaker, Josh (Laura) Whitaker and Angie (Brian) Adiska; his girlfriend Morgan Gyhra; his grandmother Alice (Edward) Lirette; his nephews Henry and Tyler; and many aunts, uncles and cousins.

Officer Whitaker was laid to rest at Oaklawn Cemetery in Stockbridge following a funeral service at St. Mary Catholic Church in Chelsea on Dec. 12.

Expressions of sympathy may be made to the Deputy Grant Whitaker Memorial Fund at Mason State Bank, 322 S. Jefferson, P.O. Box 130, Mason, MI 48854-0130.

Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards (MCOLES) has issued a comparison chart on law enforcement population trends spanning the years of 2001 to current. Please click here for the chart dated October 2014.


MAPO representatives recently joined Gov. Rick Snyder (center) for the formal signing of HB 5097. From left to right are: Matt Kurda, Karoub and Associates, legislative advisor to MAPO, Rep. John Walsh, sponsor of the bill, Police Officers Labor Council Executive Committee Chair Paul Combs, MAPO Secretary/Treasurer and Michigan Association of Police Director Fred Timpner, and Mike Sauger, President Warren POA and MAPO Executive Board member.

By Jennifer Foley, MAP Editor with excerpts from www.michigan.gov

The wait has been long, but Gov. Rick Snyder approved a measure which removes Act 312 eligible public safety employees from earlier legislation restricting their collective bargaining rights. Snyder passed Public Act 322 of 2014, introduced by Rep. John Walsh (R-Livonia); honoring his earlier statements that he would support this change to Public Act (P.A.) 54 of 2011.

"Police officers and firefighters risk their lives daily to protect citizens across our state," Snyder said. "This legislation helps ensure these first responders continue to receive full compensation regardless of the status of their contract."

Under P.A. 54, once a contract expired public employees' wages were frozen, there were no step increases and no longevity - pay increases based on years of service. The law also prevented public employees from receiving retroactive wage or benefit increases greater than those in effect on the expiration date of the previous contract. P.A. 54 took one more swing at public employees by allowing employers to pass on up to 100 percent of health care cost increases once a contract expired.

HB 5097, now P.A. 322, no longer prohibits wage or benefit increases, including step increases, authorized under the expired contract for Act 312 eligible public employees. The law also does not prohibit retroactive application of a wage or benefit increase if the increase is awarded by an arbitration panel to a negotiated contract.

"It allows us to be able to negotiate retroactivity," said MAP Director Fred Timpner.

Furthermore, when a collective bargaining agreement expires, Act 312 eligible employee costs for health care, dental, vision, prescription or other insurance benefits shall not exceed the employee's share under the Publicly Funded Health Insurance Contribution Act. This Act requires the employer to pay no more than 80 percent and the employee to pay 20 percent or more of health care costs or choose a Hard Cap. The Hard Cap for the employer is:
• $5,500 times the number of employees with single coverage, plus
• $11,000 times the number of employees with two person coverage, plus
• $15,000 times the number of employees with family coverage.

The amount necessary to purchase health insurance for employees that exceeds this "cap" must be paid by employees.

P.A. 322, which is supported by Michigan Association of Police Organizations (MAPO) and Karoub Associates, legislative consultants for MAP, takes affect immediately.

Michigan Association of Police Organizations (MAPO) has endorsed the following candidates in the 2014 General Election to be held Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2014:

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United States Senator
Gary Peters (D)
Attorney General
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partial term
Richard Bernstien David Viviano (I)
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37th Circuit
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Wayne County Probate Court
David Braxton

Arbitrator awards Renaissance Police overtime pay

Renaissance Police Officers Association (RPOA) Employees, which provide security services for the Renaissance Center in Detroit, were awarded back pay for overtime during weeks when they took paid time off after MAP filed a grievance on their behalf. The award was made retroactive to Sept. 10, 2012, the date the grievance was filed.

MAP, which has represented the RPOA over 25 years, filed the grievance after the Employer refused to pay Employees overtime if they worked and took any paid time off during the same week. MAP based the grievance on contract language which includes vacation time as hours worked for purposes of overtime.

The contract states, "All hours worked over 40 hours during a work week shall be paid at one and one-half times ... Overtime will be paid based on actual hours worked; hours for which an Officer receives bereavement leave pay, vacation pay, jury duty, holidays, and paid sick time will be counted as hours worked; in addition, hours paid for personal days shall be counted as hours worked if during the week in which a paid personal day is taken the Officer is mandated by the Employer to work. Officers will not be given time off to prevent the payment of overtime except by mutual agreement."

The new Employer disputed the grievance as untimely. The Employees were employed by Securitas through Dec. 31, 2011. Beginning on Jan. 1, 2012, Renaissance Center Management Corporation (RCMC), partially owned by G4S, became the new Employer and the Employer agreed to honor the terms of the previous collective bargaining agreement (CBA) while negotiating a new agreement, except for one provision not relevant to this matter.

Securitas paid the Employees for accrued vacation time through Dec. 31, 2012, but Employees would not have the ability to take vacation time between Jan. 1, 2012 and their respective anniversary dates, which had been previously scheduled with Securitas. RCMC and G4S agreed to allow Employees, upon request, to take unpaid time off for these previously scheduled vacations and RPOA accepted that offer.

The Arbitrator found the grievance was timely and the Employer violated the interim CBA by not counting the vacation time as hours worked for purposes of overtime.

"RPOA Officers in the bargaining unit, who took time off corresponding to the time they would have been entitled between Sept. 10, 2012 and their subsequent respective anniversary dates for vacation and who worked the hours above scheduled for such respective time periods, shall have such time off counted as hours worked, and shall be made whole for the appropriate hours for which they were not paid at one and one-half times the Officer's regular rate of pay (including shift differential)," the Arbitrator wrote in his decision. "The expenses and fees of the Arbitrator shall be borne by the Employer ..."