Membership Meeting Minutes for March 6
Minutes for the March 6, 2014 Membership Meeting.
Ray Hunt called the meeting to order and led everyone in the Pledge of Allegiance and prayer.
The meeting was dedicated to Officer Carl Greene who died in the line of duty on Wednesday, March 14, 1928. The dedication was read by Doug Griffith.
Ray welcomed District Clerk Chris Daniels. Mr. Daniels thanked everyone for their support.
Ray welcomed the Executive Director of the Houston Police Foundation, Ms. Charlene Floyd. Ms. Floyd stated that they had received 28 grants and 20 have been funded. Ray Hunt thanked the Foundation for their support of officers.
Harris County District Attorney Devon Anderson was also introduced by Ray. DA Anderson addressed the membership and thanked everyone for their support of her late husband, Mike Anderson. She stated that she is happy that the relationship between the DA’s office and the HPD has been restored. The DA’s office now participates in PIP meetings with HPD. She stated she has an open door policy and she will personally prosecute all Police Officer line of duty death cases. She asked for everyone’s support in the next election for District Attorney.
Ray Hunt also congratulated former HPOU president Gary Blankinship on his recent appointment as the US Marshall of the Southern District.
Ray also welcomed Council Member Dave Martin, Tax Assessor Mike Sullivan and 2003 Hall of Famer Elvin Bethea.
PATROL OFFICER OF THE MONTH
For the month of March, the award was presented to Officer Mike Rodriguez of the North Division.
INVESTIGATOR OF THE MONTH
There award was presented to Sergeant Cathy Richard of the Robbery Division.
Ray Hunt advised everyone that the treasurer’s report was available for their viewing on each table. Please direct questions to Tim Butler.
Ray Hunt advised everyone that the minutes from every membership meeting are posted on www.hpou.org within a few days of each monthly meeting.
RMS Project – Ray Hunt introduced retired Captain Jett who provided an updated on the project. Captain Jett stated that RMS is a good system. The redbook will be closed from April 21 – June 7th (seven weeks). Division Captains will have discretion regarding the redbook. Each station will have super-users in order to help everyone learn the system. Patrol will attend three (3) days of training and investigators will attend four (4) days of training. The anticipated go-live date is June 9, 2014.
Elections – Ray Hunt announced that all persons endorsed by the PAC, except for one, either won or will be in a runoff for their position. Ray then announced several upcoming runoff elections and encouraged members to vote in the May elections. Please refer to the HPOU website for specific endorsements.
HFD pay raise – They negotiated a 2% pay raise and a uniform supply stipend. They are continuing with negotiations for a long term contract.
It is possible that HPD will open the contract after the HFD and Municipal organizations complete their negotiations with the City.
Ray Hunt provided an updated on Officer Linda Tweedie. He stated that she has a long road of recovery but she is doing well and thanked everyone for their support.
Wellness Points – The deadline to complete the health assessment has passed as of December 31, 2013. 500 total points are needed for the reduced insurance rate by 3/31/14. Failure to complete the assessment and/or obtain the 500 points will result in higher insurance fees. Due to their health assessment, some employees received a letter stating they did not need to meet the 500 point requirement.
RMS update – Ray stated that patrol will receive three days of training and investigators will receive four. The Department will be trained April 21 – June 7, 2014. Everyone will receive TCOLE credit for the training.
A fundraiser will be held for Sergeant Philip Mulford on Friday, April 4, 2014. Sergeant Mulford was seriously injured when he stopped to help a motorist. He is married with four children. Sergeant Mulford is in need of donated time. If interested, please provide info to Officer Owens.
Scholarships – The scholarship brunch has been set for April 5, 2014 at 10:30 a.m. This year, the HPOU chose a difficult essay topic and there was a record 77 applicants. Over $30,000 will be distributed in scholarships.
The BBQ cookout at South Central was a success. There will be no March BBQ due to the rodeo.
PEER GROUP SUPPORT GROUP – 18 retired officers have been selected to attend training for the program. The program is anticipated to go live in June of 2014.
Active Shooter class for citizens – Mr. Steven Daniels (Public Affairs civilian) will be teaching a class at the HPOU building on 4/16 from 7 – 9 pm. Ray advised the membership to invite relatives or friends to the free class.
Promote conflict attorneys – Ray Hunt stated that the three outside attorneys used by the HPOU are outstanding and they want the members to know they are high quality attorneys. The HPOU will begin to post their photos at the membership meeting next month.
COLP – All excess time goes into the pool and it is managed by the LRC. The time cannot be distributed until a request for time donation has been approved by the COP. Donated time is given to the employee first and then COLP time can be utilized.
Courtesy and Commendations – The customer service committee presented at the Command Staff meeting and stated that the push towards increasing customer service has been successful. The number of complaints has dropped and the number of commendations has increased. The COP has received numerous positive comments from citizen groups.
Radio Enhancements – Every radio is in need of an upgrade that will take approximately 8-10 minutes. The radio will continue to work without the upgrade but every radio will need to have the upgrade performed. The upgrade will be rolled out department wide over the next few months. Issues regarding the smaller battery and shorter antennae are still in discussion.
Stars & Stripes Golf Tournament – May 5, 2014. Proceeds go to the ATO and Operation Lonestar programs.
Shields of Christ – this program provides a retreat for HFD and HPD personnel. There are separate retreats for males and females. Please see Officer Robles if interested. A benefit will be held on 3/30/14.
Ray Hunt reminded everyone to restrict their HCAD and voter registration information. Spouse may restrict voter information as well.
HPOU.org – Please update your address and/or email address at the HPOU office or by visiting www.HPOU.org (member tab).
Public Safety Financial Group (PSFG) – In exchange for discounted rent at the HPOU building, the PSFG offers a free financial analysis to all HPOU members. You do not need to have a deferred comp account with the PSFG to have the analysis. The analysis is valued at approximately $500 and there is no obligation to join PSFG. Contact PSFG at 832-200-3440 for an appointment.
URGENT CARE vs ER - Ray advised the membership to use urgent care centers instead of emergency rooms. Urgent care facilities are $60 compared to the ER visit of $200. Because the city is self-insured, the ER visits increase the costs to the COH.
Ray Hunt reminded everyone to wear their seatbelts at all times. The COP presented an award to Jason Roy, JD Green Don Egdorf for their participation in the video regarding seatbelt usage.
Sobering Center – Ray asked all members to support and utilize the sobering center. Utilizing the sobering center helps the city and is an easy process for officers. Most officers are unsure of the location so encourage officers to look up the area before having to transport a person to the facility.
National First Responders Day – In honor of Sean Collier, MIT officer killed by the Boston Bombers, his brother is starting a movement to create a national first responders day. Please go to www.change.org/firstresponders and sign the petition.
Facebook/Twitter – Ray Hunt asked members to invite officers to “like” the HPOU Facebook page. Additionally, HPOU is now on Twitter at @hpoutx. The HPOU is working to increase communications to members.
The next membership meeting will be on April 3, 2014.
Brickhouse Tavern is hosting an HFD vs HPD meatball eating contest on 3/10/14. The winner will receive a donation to the organization’s charity (ATO for HPD). HPD is looking for one more volunteer to participate. Please contact Doug Griffith if interested.
Use of Force Policy – Ray Hunt stated that they anticipate changes to the current policy.
Ray Hunt announced the door prizes.
Chaplain Montgomery made a motion to adjourn the meeting. Doug Griffith seconded the motion. The motion passed by a majority of membership
Minutes prepared by: Dana Hitzman, Assistant Secretary