Among the few sour notes in a Consent Decree progress report
submitted by the city this week was the fact that the Cleveland Police Patrolmen's Association (CPPA) had filed a temporary restraining order against the city.
In August, the city had entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Ohio State Highway Patrol in which the OSHP agreed to provide basic training to the current class of police cadets (the 136th class) at no cost.
This was and is a huge deal for Cleveland, especially as it stares in the face at least $13 million in Consent Decree expenditures in 2016.
But the CPPA — whom Jackson gently characterized as resistant to change in a conference with local media Wednesday afternoon ("Unions are unions," he said) — didn't like the idea of cadets busing back and forth to Columbus for six consecutive weeks.
Cleveland Safety Director Michael McGrath, Police Chief Calvin Williams and other city officials were in court Wednesday and Thursday, presenting their case before judge Carolyn Friedland. Jackson told the press Wednesday that if the court didn't rule in the city's favor, it would take a month to "gear up" to be able to train the 136th class in Cleveland. It would also cost precious time and money.
Sam Allard / Scene
Jackson addresses the media at City Hall.
From the Consent Decree progress report.
"The State’s training of the new recruit class would assist in the CDP’s effective use of the Academy training officers in meeting the training and planning requirements contained in the Consent Decree, while also assisting in meeting training requirements associated with the City’s hosting of the Republican National Convention in 2016."
At a brief hearing Friday morning, Judge Friedland sided with the City of Cleveland. She said that CPPA failed to prove that it would suffer irreparable injury if their injunction was not granted or that the public would be served if it was. Judge Friedland said that the CPPA's initial arguments related to compensation and transportation were sufficiently invalidated during testimony.
"The cadets will in fact be compensated for any and all time spent in training as well as transportation and lodging costs involved in going to Columbus and back each weekend." she said. "The inconvenience of training in Columbus does not rise to the level of irreparable harm."
Mayor Jackson issued a statement Friday morning which may be interpreted as a sigh of relief.
“This is the right decision and I am pleased that Judge Carolyn Friedland ruled in our favor," he said. "This partnership will result in excellent training for our cadets.”