At its July 16, 2012 meeting, the Ann Arbor city council authorized the appointment of John Seto as permanent police chief and head of safety services. Seto has served as interim in both roles since the resignation of former police chief Barnett Jones effective March 31.
At his farewell sendoff on March 30, Jones was emphatic about his view that Seto should be hired as permanent chief, describing Seto as “the right person to follow me.” [.jpg of Seto at former Chief Barnett Jones farewell]
Seto was hired in 1990 as a patrol officer in the AAPD and achieved the rank of deputy chief in 2008. Seto’s college degree is from Eastern Michigan University, and his subsequent professional development has included training from the FBI. He also holds certification as a firefighter.
As head of safety services, Seto oversees the fire chief. The administrative position of safety services administrator is appointed by the city administrator. But the city charter requires that the council approve the appointment of police chief.
In pertinent part, the city charter reads: “The appointive officers shall be the City Administrator and the Attorney, who shall be appointed by the Council; the Assessor and the Treasurer, the Clerk, the Controller, the Director of Building and Safety Engineering, the Fire Chief, the Police Chief, the Superintendent of Parks and Recreation, the Superintendent of Public Works, and the Superintendent of Utilities, who shall be appointed by the Council on the recommendation of the City Administrator; the Health Officer, who shall be appointed by the Council on the recommendation of the Board of Health with the advice of the City Administrator; the Planning Director, who shall be appointed by the Council on the recommendation of the Planning Commission with the advice of the City Administrator; and persons appointed to other offices or to boards and commissions established pursuant to law, this charter, or ordinance.”
This brief was filed from the city council’s chambers on the second floor of city hall, located at 301 E. Huron. A more detailed report will follow: [link]