Friday, May 14, 2010

Police and City consolidations and collaborations

With the new fiscal year upon us (it began May 1), it was good timing that Deputy Chief Nick Nichols and Assistant City Manager Rich Noll did a joint presentation Wednesday to the City Council’s Public Safety and Neighborhoods Committee about all the ways KCPD has consolidated operations with the City to save money. Many people don’t realize how extensively we partner and how much money it saves. The initiatives listed below are just some of the latest things we’re doing. We haven’t estimated cost savings for all of them, but what we have estimated is well over $1 million.

• Joint contracts for wireless devices like cell phones
• Joint computer replacement program
• E-Ticketing/Municipal Court management system – An effort is underway for an e-ticketing system that would be used by police, traffic enforcement, animal control, property code enforcement and others. Errors inherent to hand-written citations will be reduced, and big cost savings and enhanced revenue collection could result.
• Common e-mail system – The City is moving forward with switching from their system to KCPD’s
• FuelMaster Fuel Management System – Manages fueling for all of the City’s and Police Departments’ vehicles. In addition to its analytical capabilities (predicting fuel usage and the like), the system makes fuel theft nearly impossible.
• Combined building and grounds maintenance at three police stations
• Combined beverage and snack vending agreement
• Police are now providing Municipal Court security
• Police dispatchers now dispatch for Animal Public Health and Safety and Tow Operations
• Shared video production facility
• Joint management of City and Department web sites
• Joint training opportunities at the Police Academy
• Joint IT security supervisor

These are the newest initiatives, but some of our collaborations have been ongoing for years. For instance, the Police Department has managed, installed, repaired and maintained the whole City’s radio system for 30 years. For several years now, the City’s Parking Control division has handled parking enforcement Downtown while KCPD Parking Control officers focus on neighborhoods throughout the city. And if it’s a good deal for our employees, we’re considering joining the City in their self insurance plan for health coverage.

We work with City staff every step of the way in planning and implementing our budget, and I look forward to seeing what new, money-saving collaborations will come in the future.

Send comments to