One of Benton Harbor’s top officials is off the job, just two weeks after the agency he heads up was slammed with thousands of dollars in fines.
The city announced Friday that Public Safety Director Roger Lange has been placed on paid administrative leave for failing to pass two required examinations.
The Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) says that anyone in the position of public safety director must successfully complete a pair of fire tests. Since Lange has yet to do so, Jeremy Connell, Benton Harbor’s Deputy Director of Fire Services, and Dan McGinnis, the Deputy Director of Police Services, will temporarily take over his duties.
City leaders say they look forward to Lange’s return once he takes those courses.
Earlier this month, a Michigan OSHA probe cited the Public Safety Department for a number of violations. The city is only now writing standard operating procedures and was using outdated equipment.
It will cost the department $46,000 to bring its gear back up to OSHA standards.