Decision next week for police officer, firefighter

HURON The employment status of both a Huron firefighter and police officer are expected to be determined next week, city mana
Sandusky Register Staff
May 24, 2010

HURON

The employment status of both a Huron firefighter and police officer are expected to be determined next week, city manager Andy White said.

A pre-disciplinary hearing for Officer Nate Orzech took place this week. Firefighter Matt Meyer will have a hearing Friday in the city manager's office.

Questions arose over the two employees' behavior after a report written by a private investigator revealed Orzech took a nitroglycerin tablet to pass a blood pressure test and qualify for a "wellness" credit under the city's health benefits plan.

The report, written by Columbus-based private investigator Robert Schultz, cited numerous employee conduct violations, including dispensing medication without a doctor's approval or outside of a medical emergency.

Meyer gave Orzech the pill, which he obtained from a city EMS squad, in December 2007, the report stated.

Meanwhile both Meyer and Orzech remain employed in their normal capacities, White said.

Meyer has been a full-time firefighter for three years and worked part time for the department before that, said fire Chief Paul Berlin. Orzech has been with the police department since 1999.

In the report Meyer told the investigator he learned of the practice of taking the pill from a now-retired firefighter.

City employees with health benefits are tested for five wellness credits: blood pressure, nicotine, glucose, cholesterol and body mass index.

If all tests are passed the employee qualifies for an $800 reimbursement on the plan's $4,000 deductible, White said previously.

The pre-disciplinary hearing process is part of the collective bargaining agreement for employees and will allow the employees to share their side of the story, White said.