Police Chief Bruce Roberts canceled an appearance at a question and answer session scheduled for the Fort Lauderdale Council of Civic Associations on Tuesday. Subject” URGENT NOTICE !!!!
The appearance by the Chief had been on the books for months, and comes after the Council voted last month to make Public Safety the groups’ first concern. A notification was sent out by the Council today. It follows:
May 13, 2008 Meeting Change
Chief Roberts called today an advised that he will not be attending the meeting on Tuesday to answer the questions provided by the Council. He advised that the contract negotiations were in a sensitive final stage and as such felt that it would be more appropriate to respond to our questions at the June meeting. This delay allows each party adequate time to consider the offer and come to a mutual conclusion. He apologized for the lateness of the notice but provided it as the discussions reached this stage.
Because we have not provided for an alternate speaker, I would appreciate any help you might have in filling this void.
Industry insiders admit that the long tortured contract negotiations between the Fraternal Order Of Police and the City might be nearing a deal. The City offered their last best offer in negotiations last Tuesday. The Union head, Jack Lokeinsky, is expected to take the contract offer to his members for a vote in the coming weeks.
The City’s offer will bring the Department back nearer the top of pay scales compared to other Broward County Police Departments. The Fort Lauderdale Police had dropped to the bottom of those scales in the last few years and morale has suffered.
The speech cancellation also furthers speculation about the Chief’s future with the Department. High ranking officials in the Department tell me privately that the Chief’s failure to deliver the City a contract approved by his Officers might be the fatal blow that ends the Chief’s contract with the City and a long, distinguished career with the FLPD. The Chief’s contract is up for renewal in November.
It also renews rumors that Roberts might be considering a new career – politics. Some talk about the irony that Roberts might just be canned by City Manager George Gretsas, only to have Roberts then run for the City Commission and become one of Gretsas’s new bosses! Roberts lives in District I, currently represented by Commissioner Christine Teel.
Subject” URGENT NOTICE !!!!