Ottumwa City Council delays 12-hour police shifts
OTTUMWA, Iowa —
Although the Ottumwa Police Department has been approved for new officers to fill its ranks, headaches still remain due to being short staffed.
The Ottumwa City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to delay 12-hour shifts for patrol officers and sergeants until July so the police department can increase the number of officers.
Police Chief Tom McAndrew explained to city council that it would be too difficult for his officers to cover 12-hour shifts at their current staffing level.
He explained that the police union voted in November to push the changes until July.
"However, on November 21st of 2017, the union voted to delay the implementation of the 12-hour shifts until July of 2018 to ensure the viability of the change and ensure staffing levels are sufficient for the success of this change," McAndrew said.
City council and Chief McAndrew agreed that they would revisit the issue at a later date.
Both parties said they will need to reassess the situation before setting the 12-hour shifts on July 1.