City to ask state association for police department study

Bainbridge Island city officials have agreed to take an inside look from the outside at the city’s embattled police department.

Bainbridge Island City Manager Doug Schulze offered two options for conducting the long-awaited management review to the city council at its meeting Wednesday.

City officials have long talked about a comprehensive review of the police department, but the council decided to delay seeking an outside consultant until Schulze started his job as Bainbridge’s new city manager.

At the council meeting Wednesday, Nov. 28, Schulze laid out two options for launching a study into the island’s police department, but promoted one as the top choice.

The council approved Schulze’s preferred plan to hire the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs to perform a study on the city’s police department.

Schulze advised the council that the city could engage an outside consultant for the review, but said he preferred reaching out to the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs to take on the task.

“My recommendation to the city council is the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs Loaned Executive Management Assistance Program, because it can be done at a fraction of the cost and in a shorter timeframe,” Schulze said.

“The ultimate goal of the study is to identify strengths, weaknesses and areas for improvement within the police department,” he added.

The city manager estimated that a specialized consultant could cost up to $50,000, while the costs for the association to do the work could come in between $5,000 to $7,000.

Schulze noted the Loaned Executive Management Assistance Program that the association would use would involve a team spending up to three days at the department and take up to 60 days to finalize a report.

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