The Police Department.
With the national attention being focused on police conduct and police departments in other cities, it is relevant to review the authority structure of the City of Lake Geneva’s Police Department, because the structure itself is designed to prevent misuse and to provide a means to correct it if it does occur.
In order to keep city politics out of the department, the police department is autonomous, meaning it is self-governing. This condition prevents city officials from directing or controlling the police department. To assure the actions of the police and the police department are appropriate, the police department reports to a five-member civilian group the police and fire commission. There citizen’s duties are; to organize and supervise the police department and to prescribe the rules and regulations for the control and management of the department as a whole.
The members of the police and fire commission are civilians who are appointed by the mayor and their appointments are subject to city council approval. Furthermore, to keep party politics out of the police department, no more than three of the members of the Police and Fire Commission may be of the same political party. The authority and control of the police and police department is a good well-planned structure in which the mayor and city council have input but do not have control over. Civilians provide rules and regulations for the management of the police department and oversight of police department activities and personnel.
Furthermore, police and fire commission meetings are open to the public and the public can comment on agenda items. The meetings are held on the first Thursday after the first Monday of every month at 6:00 p.m. in the council chambers in city hall.