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Video: Piper Restructures Forsyth County Sheriff's Office

Newly elected Sheriff Duane Piper eliminates 15 positions and reassigns about 60 employees.

Fifteen positions were eliminated this week at the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office as part of the restructuring and reorganization of the agency.

Sheriff Duane Piper said on Wednesday the jobs that are gone were middle management positions made up of four captains, six lieutenants and three sergeants.

"We were able to work with the county and provide a severance package to these individuals," said Piper.

The rank of Lieutenant Colonel was also eliminated and two vacant positions, a sergeant and lieutenant, were not filled. In addition, about 60 employees have been reassigned throughout the sheriff's office.

Piper said while "the saving of the money is a very fortunate by product" of the layoffs and reorganization, it is not the sole reason.

"The reason is to become more effective," he said. "The purpose of the restructuring is to better serve the community. To actually be responsive and of service to the community rather than building specialized units just for the sake of having specialized units."

Piper's belief was that the agency had too many middle management positions and not enough service oriented positions. But his actions this week change all of that and beginning Monday, Feb. 25, seven new officers and the addition of a sergeant will join the School Resource Unit. Also, the existing Community Relations Unit is being expanded from four deputies to eight.

"This increase in the Community Relations Unit will allow for the expansion and new development of the community-based programs," said Piper.

See the new reorganization chart of the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office attached to this article.

Another addition in the restructuring of the agency is the creation of the ProActive Community Enforcement (P.A.C.E.) Unit. This is a unit that will operate countywide conducting targeted enforcement in problematic areas and assist with frequent monitoring of registered sex offenders who reside in the county.

Piper was sworn in as sheriff on Dec. 20 and took office on Jan. 1. Following the ceremony he told Cumming Patch, "The first I'll be doing is watching, it's going to be an evolutionary process, evaluating what we're doing and adjusting, so we can do things more affectively and more efficiently."

See the video of Sheriff Piper explaining the restructuring of the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office - update: 2-21-13, 6:36 p.m.

Piper said it's not anticipated that there will be any more layoffs within the sheriff's office.

You might also be interested in reading:

Piper Sworn in as New Forsyth County Sheriff

Duane Piper Wins Race For Forsyth Sheriff

Anne Hakooz February 22, 2013 at 02:23 PM
It's called restructuring. It pales in comparison to what our former sheriff tried to get away with. He's cleaning house and building a more effective team.
Johnny February 22, 2013 at 02:39 PM
I support Sheriff Piper. His moves have been bold and show leadership qualities that a sheriff needs to do what is right despite the consequences of the general public.
Hal Schneider February 22, 2013 at 04:01 PM
Getting rid of bloated middle management is precisely what is called for. 9 levels from the street cop to the Sheriff is preposterous in an organization of 350 people. Corporations with 10's of thousands of people don't have that many levels! Where was your outrage when all of this bureaucracy was being implemented over the past 12 years!
Chris February 22, 2013 at 07:24 PM
Sheriff Piper doesn’t have the experience or education (i.e., MPA or MBA) to adequately restructure a department. For onboarding and T&D costs alone, it would financially make sense to offer the new jobs to the officers whose positions were being eliminated since they weren’t let go for any type of performance-related reasons and the county wouldn’t have to offer severance packages. As an HR professional, this move is clearly the antithesis of best practices. Middle management must have had potential competitors for Sheriff in the future. What is a better way to ensure job security than being able to eliminate your competition yourself (see examples of despots)? Unfortunately, this is just another example of what happens when policing and politics intertwine.
MisChum February 22, 2013 at 11:23 PM
Wow, I can see who voted for who.....I love the idea behind the restructure. I think Piper is thinking of the community and serving our needs. Regardless of experience, in this economy and ever changing world your job is not guaranteed, even as a government employee. Ask anyone who has been laid off in the last few years if it was fair or deserved. They will say NO, but it was essential for the company that laid them off just like it was a good decision for our Sheriff's dept. Go PIPER!
Concerned Citizen February 23, 2013 at 06:09 AM
I know one department member who was released. Let me say, Thank you, Sheriff Piper for that cleaning house. To the one person I am referring to -- Hey what comes around, goes around. Sorry, maybe you should have thought longer and harder about all those things you did while you were there. And you call yourself a Christain..
Kirk Nelson February 23, 2013 at 01:16 PM
Thanks Liz for a great article. I can see you've ruffled some feathers, that is always a good thing.
jack tiller February 25, 2013 at 01:37 PM
Keep up the good job. Looks like yo're doing exactly what you said you would.
Citizen Avocate & Trial Lawyer May 15, 2013 at 05:46 PM
Sheriff Duane Piper represents a type of personality that is plaguing local, county, state and federal government departments like locust. The damage to communities created is immeasurable and comparable to that of the epidemic of methamphetamine. His facade has fooled many, but not everyone. Evidence of his true agenda and lack of a conscience will surface in due time.
Citizen Avocate & Trial Lawyer May 15, 2013 at 05:50 PM
To attempt to debate the complex web of deceit and unhanded tactics would potentially expose the back bone of multiple cases against Piper that are being established behind closed doors in private firms across the state.

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