Membership Meeting Minutes for March 2

OPENING

Ray Hunt called the meeting to order with the Pledge of Allegiance, and then a prayer by Corey Wilson.

 

MEETING DEDICATION

Joe Gamaldi then read the meeting dedication for Officer Marion Palmer who was killed in the line of Duty in 1938.

 

GUESTS:

Ray introduced the Houston Police Foundation Chairperson Charlene Floyd and told the membership she had donated Rodeo tickets for today’s door prizes.

 

PATROL OF THE MONTH

Ray then advised the membership that Officer Gil from Northeast was this months Officer of the month and were presented the award by Luis Menendez-Sierra.

 

INVESTIGATOR OFFICER OF THE MONTH

No Investigator of the Month was nominated.

 

TREASURER’S REPORT

Ray informed all in attendance that the treasurer’s report was on the tables and asked if there were any questions. Ray then advised the membership that if they had any questions to contact Tim Butler and he would assist them.

Reminders that the minutes are at HPOU.org

 

COMMUNICATIONS

Ray then provided an update on the two Officers injured in the shooting this week. Ray stated Ronny Cortez and Jose Munoz had been involved in the shooting and Cortez was released from the hospital. Ray advised Munoz had a long road to recovery but they had spoken to the family who was optimistic he would be able to walk again. Ray encouraged the Board to continue to pray for the family. Ray then stated that he received several calls and text messages from Al Green, Ted Poe, Lt. Governor Dan Patrick, Senator Whitmire and Carol Alvarado all concerned for the Officers.

Ray then advised the Membership of a Benefit fair which would be at the HPOU on March 29th from 0800-2400; it would be put on by the First Responders Benefit Trust (formally the Texas Police Trust). Ray advised there would be food and prizes for attendees.

Ray then addressed rumors that Harris County District Attorney, Kim Ogg, was looking at true-billed Officer involved shooting cases for review. Ray advised he spoke to Jim Leitner who stated there is no truth to this rumor.

Ray told the Membership that John Yencha resigned from his Position #19 effective at 0900 hrs. Ray told the Membership how much he appreciated John’s service to this Union. Ray advised he would have a replacement appointed next month.

Ray then advised that Jay Gause would be next door at the Membership meeting answering questions in regards to the Burial Fund.

Ray then provided an update on the Pension talks. Ray stated HPOPS met with the City yesterday and the bill is still in the works. Ray also said there is a rumor that Fire is attempting to kill the proposed bill. Ray stated that Flynn is carrying the Bill as written but Huffman has attached an amendment to the Bill, which is bad for our Pension. Ray sated that she attached a provision, which would make the bonds to be voted on by the citizens of Houston. Ray advised he believed this would get done but it was going to take work.

Ray then allowed Captain Freemin to address the Membership about an upcoming concert. Freemin stated that Aaron Watson would be at Northeast on March 6 at 1900 hrs. to do a concert for Police Officers. Freemin encouraged all to attend and advised food would be available at the location.

Ray then advised he met with Senator John Cornyn who advised he is proposing legislation that would provide the City with $25,000 for each Officer hired that was a veteran Ray advised it would be called American Law Enforcement Hero’s Act.

Ray gave an update on body cameras and advised that the cameras roll out has been suspended. Ray stated that the Chief wanted all the cameras updated and there were looking at “trigger” to turn the camera on before they continued to roll them out. Ray stated that Watchguard had done a “hit” piece in the Wall Street Journal about how the Chief was wasting taxpayer monies by stopping the roll out.

Ray told the Membership he believed that the Command Staff would be named next week.

Ray then addresses the upcoming new IAD process. Ray advised he was in contact with Austin’s Police Union who advised they came up with the idea and loved it. They put it into contract language where they had to use the process. Ray advised an officer would get his 48-hour notice and all the information in regards to the complaint. He would then meet with the investigator with his Union Attorney and have an interview as to the complaint. Austin state it reduced time, paperwork and discipline for the officers.

Ray reminded Officers who pass the Physical Agility test who were hired prior to 03-30-2011 you get $800, and hired after that date get 40 hours of PD time.

Ray then addressed the rumor that the Chief stated everyone with a badge would be on patrol one day a month. Ray advised he believed this was a mistake and he would be speaking to the Chief in their next meeting about it. Ray advised that ultimately it was the Chief’s.

Ray then advised the Membership that the Scholarship Breakfast would be on April 18th at 1030. Ray then advised the Board approved $40,000 for a record number of scholarships to be awarded.

Ray advised the Membership that the Cookout for April would be on March 22nd at South Central.

Ray then told the Membership that open enrollment would be from March 13th through April 7th. Ray then advised on the upcoming rate changes. Ray advised the following:

Kelsey plan  and Limited network plans: No increase
Open Acces: 14.9% increase
Retirees all plans: 9.83% increase
No co-pay changes
Any major pharmacy could be used for PX.

Ray then advised the Membership of a Benefit fair which would be at the HPOU on March 29th from 0800-2400; it would be put on by the First Responders Benefit Trust (formally the Texas Police Trust). Ray advised there would be food and prizes for attendees.

Ray then reminded the membership of the upcoming Stars and Stripes Golf Tournament, which was approaching. Ray stated it was April 20th at Kingwood Country Club and is anyone wanted additional information contact Captain Freemin.

Ray then wanted to wish special thanks to the following organizations for their assistance during the incident of the two HPD officers being shot in the line of duty:

Taste of Texas

United Airlines

Boston Police Department

Texas Children’s Hospital

Ray then advised the membership that Under the Radar Brewery was hold an event on May 6,2017 where 10% of the proceeds would go to Assist the Officer.

Doug Griffith then drew the winning ticket for the Calf Scramble AR-15. Doug announced the winner as Joseph Mulis.

 

REMINDERS

Ray reminded the membership to utilize the Doctors Council of Texas if there injured in the line of duty. Ray advised this would save a lot of headaches in the future dealing with workers compensation.

Ray spoke on the First Responder Peer Support and advised it is still being held on Monday and Thursdays.

Ray reminded to the membership that you can still fill prescriptions at the HEB, Wal-Mart, Walgreens, Sam’s or Kelsey but NOT Target. Target and CVS have been removed from the approved locations to get medication filled.

Ray reminded the Officers at the meeting to get and use the new HPOU app for their smartphones, both Apple and Google. Ray stated that this is the quickest way for the HPOU to push out notifications to the membership.

Ray then reminded the membership if they were in the market for a home loan or refinancing to use Mickey Keys with Fairway mortgage. With every closed loan, Mickey makes a donation to the Assist the Officer Foundation.

Ray then advised the membership if they needed a Realtor to use Michael Bedner who advertises in the Badge and Gun.

Ray advised the membership that HOPA the Peer support group is live 832-200-3499 and that if any Officer was in need of assistance or knew of an Officer who needed help, to please call for assistance. Ray mentioned to the membership that there have been 3 suicides this year.

Ray advised the membership that there are guns for purchase from Tim Butler. Tim has AR-15s in stock, which will be sold at cost.

Ray then told the members to remember to KEEP YOUR FIELD NOTES! Ray advised we would address this in the legislature but for now officers need to keep them.

Ray Hunt reminded everyone to restrict his or her HCAD and voter registration information.  Spouse may restrict voter information as well.

HPOU.org – Please update your address and/or email address at the HPOU office or by visiting www.HPOU.org (member tab).

Public Safety Financial Group (PSFG) –Thinking of retiring go see PSFG for a free financial analysis. The analysis is valued at approximately $500 and there is no obligation to join PSFG.  Contact PSFG at 832-200-3440 for an appointment.

URGENT CARE vs. ER – Ray advised the membership to use urgent care centers instead of emergency rooms.  Urgent care facilities are $65 compared to the ER visit of $400.  Because the city is self-insured, the ER visits increase the costs to the COH.

Ray Hunt reminded everyone to wear seat belts at all times and to watch your speed.

Sobering Center – Ray asked all members to support and utilize the sobering center.  Utilizing the sobering center helps the city and is an easy process for officers.  Most officers are unsure of the location so encourage officers to look up the area before having to transport a person to the facility.

Facebook/Twitter – Ray Hunt asked members to invite officers to “like” the HPOU Facebook page.  Additionally, HPOU is now on Twitter at @hpoutx.  The HPOU is working to increase communications to members.

The next meeting will be on April 6, 2017.

 

UNFINISHED BUSINESS

None

 

NEW BUSINESS

None

 

NEW MEMBERS

All of Class 229 was accepted after a motion from Luis Menendez-Sierra and a second from Joe Gamaldi.

 

DOOR PRIZES

Ray Hunt announced the door prizes.

 

ADJOURNMENT

Joe Gamaldi made a motion to adjourn the meeting, and Doug Griffith seconds the motion. The motion passed by a majority of membership

 

Minutes prepared by: Will Reiser Secretary