Stories indexed with the term ‘Wireless Washtenaw’

County Board Gets Update From Sheriff

Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners (Feb. 17, 2010): In an extensive presentation to the board, sheriff Jerry Clayton laid out changes he’s made in his department since he took office just over a year ago, and discussed his goals and priorities for the coming years.

Gene DeRossett, Elmer White, Derrick Jackson, Jerry Clayton

Sheriff Jerry Clayton, right, talks with Derrick Jackson, director of community engagement for the sheriff's department, before the Feb. 17 county board of commissioners meeting. Behind them are Gene DeRossett, left, chief administrative officer for the 14-A District Court, and Elmer White, who gave an update on the USS Washtenaw exhibit. (Photo by the writer.)

One of the most significant changes was financial. In 2009, overtime hours dropped 36%, leading to nearly $1 million in savings during the year. The department also raised $1 million in new revenues, exceeding Clayton’s projections.

Beyond that, Clayton presented his broad philosophical approach to managing law enforcement in the county, and discussed some of the challenges he faces in light of the current economy.

Law enforcement also came up in a separate discussion during the board’s Wednesday meeting, as commissioner Wes Prater raised concerns over the county’s internal financial controls. Though he’s been agitating for action on this front for several months, his decision to ask the board to form a review committee was prompted by the recent arrest of a county employee charged with embezzling over $100,000.

Commissioners also spent considerable time on Wednesday debating the process of formally revising their priorities. The effort is aimed at adapting the priorities to reflect the county’s diminishing resources. While commissioners agreed that community input was crucial, there was no clear consensus about what the process for gathering that input should be, or how much time it will take.

Finally, the board got a brief update on the Wireless Washtenaw project, a coda to a report given at their Jan. 20 meeting. The firm that’s handling the project, 20/20 Communications, is partnering with Southfield-based Internet 123 and plans to submit a revised business plan for Wireless Washtenaw within 60 days. [Full Story]

McDaniel Only Interviewee For Guenzel’s Job

Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners (Jan. 20, 2010): An uncharacteristically brief meeting that lasted less than an hour included an update on the search for a new county administrator, a report on the Wireless Washtenaw project, and a eulogy for county planning.

Verna McDaniel is deputy county administrator, and will be the sole candidate interviewed by the board of commissioners as a replacement for retiring administrator Bob Guenzel.

Verna McDaniel is deputy county administrator, and will be the sole candidate interviewed by the board of commissioners as a replacement for retiring administrator Bob Guenzel. (Photo by the writer.)

Conan Smith, who serves on the executive committee that’s leading the search to replace retiring county administrator Bob Guenzel, announced that only one person would be interviewed for the job at Thursday’s working session: Verna McDaniel, deputy county administrator. She is the only internal candidate for the job – about a dozen external candidates applied, but they won’t be interviewed at this time, Smith said.

In other updates, Wes Prater – the board’s liaison to the Washtenaw County Road Commission – reported that a recent survey of 111 county bridges revealed 40% are deficient, and nearly 20 are classified as critical. That survey does not include bridges that are the responsibility of cities within the county – like the East Stadium bridges in Ann Arbor.

And though there was no discussion of it at Wednesday’s meeting, commissioners also voted to dissolve a review board for the sheriff’s department – an issue they’d talked about at last week’s administrative briefing. [Full Story]