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Patterson Proposes Amendments to Sheriff's Contract with Pontiac

Public Date: 7/6/2011 12:00 AM
Contact: Bill Mullan, Media and Communications Officer
Phone Number: 248-858-1048

Pontiac, Michigan -- Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson has directed his staff to propose amendments to the Sheriff's contract with the City of Pontiac that protect Oakland County taxpayers if Pontiac were to enter Chapter 9 bankruptcy. The amendments will be proposed tonight at the Board of Commissioners meeting following Patterson’s budget message.

"I want to ensure that Oakland County taxpayers are not on the hook if Pontiac goes bankrupt," Patterson said. "My proposed amendments will ensure Oakland County is always paid first and has an 'out' if Pontiac defaults or goes into bankruptcy."

The amendments call for Pontiac to prepay regular and overtime costs for Sheriff patrol services on a monthly basis. Previously, Pontiac was to pay on a bi-weekly basis as services are rendered. If there is any underpayment or overpayment of overtime expenses, the city and county will "square up" on a monthly basis.

The amendments also give Oakland County the right to suspend patrol services or terminate the contract if the City of Pontiac defaults on payments or enters Chapter 9 bankruptcy. If the city defaults on its payments to the county, Pontiac will have 30 days to rectify the default. The previous contract simply provided that either party could cancel with 180 days written notice.

Without these amendments, if Pontiac were to go into bankruptcy, Oakland County taxpayers would have to line up like any other creditor in bankruptcy court to get paid for Sheriff patrol services. Plus, a bankruptcy judge could order Oakland County to continue to provide patrol services without payment under the previous contract.

The Board of Commissioners is scheduled to meet at 7:00 p.m. today in the Board of Commissioners Auditorium, 1200 North Telegraph, Pontiac.

For media inquiries only, please contact Bill Mullan, Media and Communications Officer, at (248) 858-1048.