In the Explorer Newspaper Opinion Column, Sharp’s reporting structure on June 19, 2013, Editor Thelma Grimes makes the following statement: “The department (police) receives national recognition, it puts a priority on traffic safety and has really gained attention over the last year for placing a priority on having police officers inside all schools inside town limits”.
The Oro Valley Police Department’s School Resource Officer (SRO) Program has a long-standing record dating all the way back to its inception in 1977. This program recently gained attention after the school disaster at Sandy Hook. Chief Sharp’s reporting structure to the town council had nothing to do with this excellent program.
The editor said: “However, there is the argument that if it’s not broke, don’t fix it”. The editor then answers her own statement: “The council, while they do their jobs nicely, are still not full-time members of the town staff. They have jobs, lives and are elected officials who are paid a minimal amount to oversee policy”.
Having the police chief reporting to seven part time council members is unwieldy. As a department director in Oro Valley, the police chief and police department accounts for almost 50 percent of the Town’s operational budget. This requires direct full-time supervision by the town manager.
There is no direct evidence to correlate that the new reporting relationship to the town council since March 2011 has provided any improvements.