AJPD officers given green light to work overtime for ASU, city of Glendale

Apache Junction Mayor Jeff Serdy and Councilwoman Christa Rizzi at a recent council meeting. (Arianna Grainey, Independent Newsmedia)

Off-duty Apache Junction Police Department officers may be paid for professional law-enforcement and security services at Arizona State University events and in the city of Glendale, which includes the Arizona Cardinals football stadium.

The city of Apache Junction will pay each officer’s workers’ compensation insurance, according to the intergovernmental agreements with ASU and the city of Glendale that were approved Dec. 18 by an unanimous vote of the Apache Junction City Council.

Police Chief Thomas Kelly

“It’s basically for overtime, to hire our officers for concerts, potentially the Super Bowl assuming it would come back and those other sporting events,” AJPD Chief Thomas E. Kelly said at the council’s Dec. 17 work session.

“It’s a hire-back program they would be doing on off-duty time using police services, when they don’t have enough to supplement their own staff.”

Jeff Struble

Councilman Jeff Struble asked for confirmation that this agreement is similar to what the City Council has approved in the past.

“Yeah. There’s no cost to the city, just basically an off-duty assignment for the officers should they request our assistance and then they do it on a volunteer basis,” Chief Kelly said, confirming that the insurance agreements are also the same as previous years.

Under Arizona law, it is mandatory for employers to secure workers’ compensation insurance for their employees, according to the Industrial Commission of Arizona.

Workers’ compensation is a “no fault” system in which an injured employee is entitled to receive benefits for an industrial injury, no matter who caused the job-related accident, according to the entity’s website.

Arizona State University

ASU is in the cities of Phoenix, Tempe, Glendale, Mesa and Scottsdale and has jurisdictional authority over and public-safety interests in the operation of all of its campuses, according to the agreement with the city of Apache Junction.

“ASU has the need for qualified personnel to provide law enforcement security services for campus special events. The city desires to provide law-enforcement security services to ASU by making available police department officers in accordance with the terms set forth herein,” it states.

The city acknowledges that command and control for all events worked for ASU shall be the duty and responsibility of ASU’s police department, it states.

“The opportunity for the AJPD to work these events is something I have been advocating since I first became the off-duty coordinator,” AJPD Detective Stephanie Jewell said in a memo to the council about the ASU agreement.

“Because of our location in the Valley, it is often difficult to find off-duty opportunities for officers,” she said.

All assigned officers will be required to enter into temporary employment contracts with ASU, according to the agreement.
While working an event, the assigned officers must wear uniforms approved by the city and they may carry other equipment authorized by the city, it states.

Each assigned officer who works an event will be paid a negotiated special-event hourly rate by ASU, the city pays the workers’ compensation coverage and ASU pays for liability coverage, according to the agreement.

“Each assigned officer’s home agency (primary employer) shall provide the workers’ compensation coverage in such amounts and under the same terms and conditions as its other sworn, full-time employees. ASU and ASU PD will provide liability coverage,” it states.

City of Glendale

The State Farm Stadium in Glendale is within Glendale’s corporate limits and it has jurisdictional authority over and public-safety interests in the operation of the stadium, according to the agreement with the city of Apache Junction.

“The parties desire to participate in providing law-enforcement security and traffic-management services to the city of Glendale, relating to the stadium, by making available Apache Junction Police Department and Glendale Police Department officers in accordance with the terms set forth herein,” the agreement states.

“Apache Junction shall have the discretion to determine which and how many of its officers will be allowed to apply for assignments at events and how many officers will be assigned to the events,” it states.

Each assigned officer who works an event will be paid a negotiated hourly rate.

Each officer’s home agency provides workers’ compensation coverage in such amounts and under the same terms and conditions as other sworn, full-time employees for all assigned officers, with the city of Glendale providing liability coverage, according to the agreement.

Editor Richard Dyer can be reached at rdyer@newszap.com

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