An overwhelming no-confidence vote in late May on Rohnert Park Public Safety Chief Brian Masterson by police and firefighters — a rare step in Sonoma County law enforcement — has laid bare the department’s ongoing struggles with “staffing, overtime and leadership.”
The 36-6 vote calling for the dismissal of Masterson followed in-house criticism of his leadership. The department has struggled the last few years on mandatory overtime shifts to keep a minimum of patrol cars on the street and dispatchers at the console. Meanwhile, since early this year, daily overtime has been required to keep one or two firefighters on one of the city’s two engines.
A week before the no-confidence vote was tallied, the city had given the chief a four-year contract extension and 13 percent raise, raising his salary to about $216,000 annually by the contract’s end. The officers were unaware of his new contract when they voted.
The no-confidence vote came despite city approval this spring of public safety officers’ new four-year contract. It bumps wages an average of 14 percent over the contract in an attempt to catch up with some of their county peers after recession pay cuts.
Seriously, a 14 percent pay raise.
Source: The Press Democrat