By Ralph Echtinaw
St. Louis is out more than $8,000 following the Jan. 26 resignation of police officer Jakin Charles Clark, who joined the department in December after the city paid his way through the Delta College police academy.
Clark, 22, “resigned for personal reasons,” said Police Chief Richard J. Ramereiz Jr. “It had noting to do with his employment with us. He was progressing as expected. He was doing fine.”
Clark was the first of two men (so far) whom the city paid to attend the Delta College Police Academy at a cost of $8,353 tuition plus 55 percent of an officer’s wages ($12.88 /hour) while in school. He graduated in late December and went right to work, training with officers Matt Van Hall and Greg Kolhoff on the night shift.
Ramereiz said Clark will reimburse the city for the Delta College application fee ($250) and licensing exam fee ($75). But that is all. The remaining expense of putting Clark through the academy is a sunk cost. The city will never get it back.
Ramereiz had this to say about Clark last August: “He lives just outside of town, bought a house (and) just got married a year ago. He has no wish or desire to leave the area. His family is here. His church is here. He has strong ties to both and doesn’t want to go anywhere else. He is very much willing to go through whatever he has to to become an officer. It’s a childhood dream of his.”
Ramereiz hopes to have better luck with Kyle Eisenberger, 24, of Shepherd, who began training at the Delta College Police Academy Jan. 9 and will graduate May 5, if all goes well. The city pays $8,353 for his tuition, but in this case state government will reimburse the city up to $4,000 for the outlay. Like Clark, Eisenberger gets 55 percent of a starting officer’s wages while in school.
In his monthly report for February, Ramereiz said Eisenberger is “doing great in the police academy and is expected to graduate this spring,” adding that every cadet in Eisenberger’s class is sponsored by a police agency that pays his or her tuition.
The department will still be short one officer when Eisenberger comes on board, so Ramereiz has advertised the opening on the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement web site.
Police academy students have also expressed interest. “I have had emails and phone calls from some people at other academies inquiring about full time employment,” Ramereiz said. “We will see if they apply or not.” (Many Michigan police departments are looking for officers, so St. Louis has a lot of competition for new hires.)
The chief is also trying to revive the reserve police officer program. “Over the last few years the program has dwindled due to lack of interest and current reserve officers retiring,” he said in his monthly report for February.
Miranda and the M80s have agreed to perform 7-10 p.m. Friday, July 14, one day before the fireworks. (The original plan was for the band to perform Saturday night, but it already has a gig scheduled for that evening.) A second band may be hired to perform on Saturday, July 15.
Wastewater treatment plant purchases
Council approved purchase of 2.4 horsepower drop-in mixer for anaerobic spare tank from Landia Inc. of Cary, NC for $18,758.
Council approved purchase of a PL-200 Bare Pump with MIP radial liners from Detroit Pump of Ferndale for $14,442. (It’s called a bare pump because the drive shaft of the motor that runs the pump is uncovered, said Public Services Director Keith Risdon.)
Both items will be used in the city’s wastewater treatment plant behind the DPW garage on Union Street.
Easter egg hunt
Council approved the 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. closing of Franklin Street from East Saginaw to the Parkside Assembly of God to accommodate a Saturday, April 8, Easter egg scavenger hunt.
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