Community Notices

Wayland Schools to hire resource officer in August

Wayland Union Schools will have a half-time school resource officer beginning with the next academic year.

Assistant Supt. For Finances and Operations Patricia Velie outlined the program Monday night for the Wayland City Council.

Schools will use a school resource officer (SRO) grant from the Michigan State Police for the first year of the three-year program, which is expected to cost $123,504. Velie told the council the city won’t have to pay a dime for the position.

Fifty percent of the cost of latter two years of the program will be absorbed by the Gun Lake Casino’s revenue sharing in lieu off taxes program.

Velie said the SRO will work for 38 weeks at 20 hours a week, but the officer could work all of the time for the city over the summer. The idea is to free up current Director of Public Safety Matt Miller to handle issues with younger students, perhaps in the middle school.

Retired Lt. Scott Mattice, now Wayland’s police chief, will be the supervisor of the officer. He told the council the SRO “probably will be a retiring (city) officer.”

It’s still up in the air as to whether the program will be continued after three years. Officials said they will review it when that time comes.

Primary duties for the SRO include informal mentoring and counseling, community policing, partnering with other local organizations and work together with the public safety director. He or she also will be under the direction of Mattice, who reports to Supt. Tim Reeves.

The new officer will come on board at the beginning of August.

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