Township hires two new police officers

FLINT TWP. — Township officials have hired experienced police officers to fill two of seven budgeted openings on the township police force.

The board on Monday approved the hiring of Philip McBride and Lacy Lopez. Both were top finishers on the Civil Service Exam.

A third candidate was withdrawn pending completion of his background check.

McBride is a graduate of Genesee Christian School and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice from Michigan State University. He is a graduate of the Flint Regional Police Academy and is currently employed as a full-time officer in the Village of Milford where he has served for six years.

Prior to that he was an officer in the City of Flint for two years before being laid off in 2008.

He was a top scoring candidate on the civil service test, said Lt. Robert Batinkoff, who presented the hiring request to the township board Monday night.

Lopez currently works fulltime as a police officer in Clayton Township, where she has served for six years. She is a graduate of Swartz Creek High School, earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice at Ferris State University, and an Associate’s Degree in Criminal Justice from Mott Community College. She also graduated from the Flint Regional Police Academy.

Based on his level of experience and training, McBride will start at the fifth pay level and move to six years on completion of his field training, Batinkoff said.

Lopez will start at a level three base pay rate and and rise to the four-year level after field training. She finished third on the civil ser vice exam.

Batinkoff also noted that McBride’s pay is less than he is earning in Milford but Lopez’ pay is commensurate with what she is earning in Clayton Township.

Both candidates said they applied because of the department’s lateral pay entry provision, as opposed to hiring in at entry level pay, Batinkoff said.

The collective bargaining agreement allows the police department to hire in at any step of the pay scale, based on experience, educa- tion and training.

Chief Sippert said this provision was added to the contract as incentive to attract more experienced officers.

“We think they are very good addition to the department,” Batinkoff said.

During the past year, the Flint Township Civil Service Commission has conducted two entry level testing periods and has now created an updated certified list of eligible candidates, said Chief Sippert in a memo to the board. The Commission has supplied names of several candidates to fill vacancies but so far McBride and Lopez are the first to complete background checks and receive conditional offers of employment. Both are expected to begin work on March 23.

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