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Grandview police chief retires, but not for long

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Grandview Police Chief Dave Charvet

One of the most respected police officers in the state has joined the ranks of the retired.

Grandview Police Chief Dave Charvet retired from his job on Jan. 15 of this year, but his retirement didn't last long as he was hired back the same day.

Charvet, 51, retired from his 31-year law enforcement career with the City of Grandview at the beginning of the year due in part to the state retirement system.

City Administrator Jim Sewell explained that Charvet's retirement is completely different than the retire/rehire state program that gained notoriety over the last couple of years in the state education system.

Sewell said Charvet falls under a specific retirement program for law enforcement officers. Sewell said there are a number of different regulations governing each state retirement plan that would provide a vast, indepth explanation because they are so comprehensive.

"The rules are different for everyone," said Sewell.

Sewell said the program allows a law enforcement officer to retire after 30 years without losing any benefits the particular officer has paid into his/her retirement. The difference between the law enforcement retire/rehire program and the one being commonly utilized by the education system is that Charvet is not required to be away from his job for a 30-day period. Sewell said under the law enforcement program, Charvet was allowed to tender his retirement notice to the city and then be rehired immediately.

The major change concerning the Grandview police chief is that Charvet will only be able to work 150 hours a month, instead of the 160 hours in a normal work month.

"Dave will work a couple of hours less each week than he did before," said Sewell.

Sewell also wanted to iron out some other areas of clarification concerning Charvet's retirement. In the City of Grandview, the Mayor, Mike Bren, has the power to make appointments to positions such as police chief. Even under the state provisions concerning the retirement program, the city was not required to publicly post Charvet's position, as is required in the field of education, because it is not a position protected by a union. Sewell also pointed out that technically Charvet never resigned his position, he just retired.

"The position never did become vacant," said Sewell. "Dave continued in the position. The hours he can work were the only thing changed."

Charvet, whose career spans 31 years with the Grandview Police Department, became police chief on April 3, 1984. His current rate of pay is $4,666 per month.

Sewell said the City of Grandview will actually save about $20,000 per year in salaries, benefits and other expenses with having Charvet employed as chief in this manner.

"It is a win-win situation for both sides," said Sewell.

Sewell said he was in favor of keeping Charvet on because having such an experienced and respected officer on staff will only be a benefit to the city and the residents of Grandview.

"Dave is one of the most respected police chiefs in the state," said Sewell.

Mayor Bren expressed much of the same reasoning as Sewell for wanting to keep Charvet on staff. Bren said Charvet was actually approached by another employer with a job offer, but opted to stay with the city. Bren said Charvet at 51 was being hurt by the retirement system because he has put his years in on the job, but is still young enough where he can't afford to retire. Bren said he feels the city was fortunate to be able to retain Charvet and wants to assure the citizens they will still have full access to their police chief.

"We aren't going to see any changes (in the way the police department is ran) in the City of Grandview," said Bren. "With the experience and knowledge Dave has I think we are very fortunate to be able to retain him.

"We believe Dave has just done an excellent job as police chief," added Bren.

. Mike Kantman can be contacted at (509) 837-4500, or email him at mkantman@eaglenewspapers.com

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