Miami Twp. to require reimbursement by police officers who leave department before 2 years

Miami Twp. recently took action to curb a trend of new police officer hires leaving the department before working there for two years.

The township will require those who make an early exit to reimburse the department, according to Police Chief Charlie Stiegelmeyer.

“What that basically says is, once we hire you, we incur this cost,” he said. “You will remain with the township for two full calendar years, and if you do so, then life is good. If you leave prior to two calendar years, you’re going to reimburse us for all or a portion thereof of those costs that (the township) incurred.”

Officers employed less than a year before they leave will reimburse the department the entire amount, or a little more than $5,069. Those employed from 13 months and two years before their departure are required to provide 50% reimbursement, or just under $2,535.

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Stiegelmeyer said the agreement is nothing new among police agencies throughout the region and across the state, but instead is becoming “quite the standard.”

The police department incurs “a rather large expense” when it hires a new officer, he said. During each officer’s background process, Miami Twp. Police Department must pay for a physical and a psychological exam, as well as outfitting officers for their uniforms and other items in order to prepare them for being a police officer for the township

“That’s around a ($5,000) or $6,000 occurrence per officer, per time,” he said. “In the current state of affairs, through law enforcement countrywide, there’s a growing trend for an officer to start with an agency and then go on to a different agency for more opportunities, more money, various other reasons. What ends up happening is police departments have this initial investment, and within a short period of time, these people move on and we’re left again having to reoccur this expense.”

Miami Twp. for the last two years, has had that happen at eight different times, costing it between $45,000 to $50,000.

“That adds up very quickly in my budget,” he said.

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