Panel embracing consultants advice

Panel embracing consultants advice

JUNEAU -- The Judicial and Public Protection Committee heard from Dodge County Sheriff Dale Schmidt Friday afternoon on some possible changes and position additions he would like to make in light of what was recently presented by the Matrix Consulting Group.

Matrix Consulting Group of California was hired by Dodge County for $85,000 to conduct an operational review of the sheriff's office.

Richard Brady, president of the Matrix Consulting Group, met Tuesday with the Dodge County Executive Committee and presented them with a draft of his report. Brady said Tuesday that over an eight-month time frame his firm conducted a detailed review of the sheriff's office and its jail operations.

He is scheduled to present the report to the Dodge County Board of Supervisors Aug. 20.

Schmidt said Friday he is simply reviewing any new positions he may need once the report by Matrix is finalized. No action was taken Friday. It was an informational meeting for Schmidt to explain what the positions are and how they would benefit his department for the upcoming budget process.

The first was to abolish one full-time jail corporal and create two sergeants.

"We always knew our sergeant staffing was low, but we made it work with the structure we have," Schmidt said. "However it has been a struggle for our sergeants."

Schmidt said his sergeants run the "every day" operations of the jail and are required to supervise all five jail pods, but much of their time is spent in their offices.

Dodge County Chief Deputy Scott Mittelstadt said the sergeants are the ones who help with the coaching and mentoring of the staff.

"They are the ones on the front line," Mittelstadt said.

Schmidt also recommended one full-time deputy secretary to help the jail sergeants. He said this individual would work with the 10 sergeants to help alleviate their workload.

Schmidt said there are currently 3.5 deputy secretaries and this full-time position would bring it up 4.5 positions, if it were eventually approved.

The sheriff also said he wanted to eliminate one full-time deputy sheriff and create one full-time patrol sergeant, which would allow the individual in the patrol sergeant position time to perform crash investigations.

"This is a need," he said. "This is a position we have heard a lot about. I have supported this. Matrix agrees and says we need a full-time crash investigator, but that it needs to be a supervisor."

Schmidt said the investigator would focus on the major crashes and focus on the criminal aspect of fatal crashes. He said the investigator could also identify areas that are potentially high risk crash areas and pursue any crash reduction efforts needed in Dodge County.

Schmidt also recommended the addition of two part-time court security officers, who are retired deputies. He said the two additional deputy sheriffs would not effect the budget. It just makes the "pool" larger to draw from when a current part-time court security officer wants time off.

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