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Posted on Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 12:57 p.m.

Union calls on former Ann Arbor police chief Barnett Jones to resign from Detroit Water department

By Sven Gustafson

The union representing security officers at the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department is urging Barnett Jones to resign after the Detroit Free Press revealed that the security chief and former Ann Arbor police chief was holding two six-figure jobs simultaneously.

Barnett Jones.jpg

Barnett Jones in his days as Ann Arbor's police chief.

Jones on Thursday resigned from his position as administrator of public safety in Flint. The Free Press last week reported that Jones was working that job at the same time he was holding down the full-time position in Detroit, earning a combined $273,750.

Flint officials said they were unaware that Jones was also working as chief of security for the Detroit water department.

"When he was hired in, they changed the name to the department of security and integrity because they wanted to set a new tone," Michael Mulholland, vice president of AFSCME Local 27, told the Freep. "If that irony alone isn't enough to fire him, I don't know what is."

Sue McCormick, the director of Detroit Water and Sewerage Department who previously served as public services administrator for Ann Arbor, said she's standing by Jones despite the controversy. She said Jones had told her about his job in Flint, but she believed it was part time.

Most of the water department's security officers are paid $13.45 an hour after a recent 10-percent pay cut and are being asked for further concessions to save money, Mulholland said.

Jones came to his home town of Ann Arbor to serve as police chief in 2006 and resigned last February in what he then billed as his retirement. He was eligible for a pension from the city.

Jones was appointed to Flint's top police job in April by the city's then-emergency manager, Michael Brown, who now says the city will investigate records to shed light on Jones' schedule in city hall.

"All I can say right now is, he was there (at work) and engaged and I think he was working 40 hours at two jobs," Brown told MLive. "I guess you could say burning the candle at both ends."

For the latest, read the Freep story.


Great Lakes Lady

Tue, Jan 15, 2013 : 10:26 p.m.

In addition to collecting 2 salaries simultaneously from 2 "full-time" jobs, he also collected 3 different pensions?!? ....from Ann Arbor, Sterling Hts, and Oakland County. Amazing!!

Boo Radley

Tue, Jan 15, 2013 : 2:27 a.m.

Oh ..... and I forgot .... he also retired as a Captain from the Oakland County Sheriff's Department.


Tue, Jan 15, 2013 : 3:56 a.m.

How many times has this guy "retired" in his life?


Mon, Jan 14, 2013 : 10:10 p.m.

This isn't right; the man was just trying to make a buck and obviously working long, hard hours to do so. You are depriving him of the opportunity of earning a second and third pension plus a living that almost puts him into the "rich" category as declared by our president. Most people try to accomplish this one taxpayer funded job at a time but this man is more ambitious and hardworking than most. At least he's not Kwame Kilpatrick...................

Great Lakes Lady

Mon, Jan 14, 2013 : 10:50 p.m. meant to say deprivation of "earning a third and fourth" pension....he already collects two pensions, one from Ann Arbor after 5 years, and one from I believe the article stated Sterling Hts. Did he retire elsewhere before his job at Sterling Hts?!?

Great Lakes Lady

Mon, Jan 14, 2013 : 3:32 p.m.

What a gig....go from gov't job to gov't job collecting separate pensions from each one, after only 5 years of "work"?!? Then work 2 full-time 6-figure jobs simultaneously?!?


Mon, Jan 14, 2013 : 2:29 p.m.

The problem lies more deeply than just with Jones. "She (Sue McCormick) said Jones had told her about his job in Flint, but she believed it was part time." When you hire a person for a FULL-TIME salaried public position, the public expects him to put forth 100% of their work time in that one position. The fact that McCormick even OK'd this for what she thought was a part-time gig for Barnett show she is not the best person for her job either. Sounds like more of the Detroit/Wayne county way of doing things.

Nicholas Urfe

Mon, Jan 14, 2013 : 2:21 p.m.

Has anyone confirmed whether he has not also been holding a 3rd or 4th simultaneous job?


Mon, Jan 14, 2013 : 2:02 p.m.

They didn't throw in the pensions he also receives, he might even be collecting a disability compensation. I guess you can never be sure what goes on at those sewage plants.


Mon, Jan 14, 2013 : 2:11 p.m.

Yes - working around human waste can be hazardous. A lunatic turd just might go nuts.

Alan Goldsmith

Mon, Jan 14, 2013 : 11:53 a.m.

According to the outdated City of Ann Arbor webpage, Jones is "an Adjunct Professor for Eastern Michigan University". Is this still the case? And if so, does he draw a salary for THAT position as well?

Chase Ingersoll

Mon, Jan 14, 2013 : 12:31 a.m.

Union Humor: teach him every trick he knows and then call for his removal because he does does them so well.

Jay Thomas

Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 11:19 p.m.

For those that know his history Jones was always trying to game the system and get every "merit badge" and benefit he could.


Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 11:03 p.m.

Actual reporting on this McCormick/Jones story:

Kai Petainen

Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 11:09 p.m.

There is a word in the Finnish language... 'sisu'... it means 'guts'. It's a positive word in the Finnish language. A2Politico has guts. I may or may not always agree with them or with the Ann Arbor news, but A2Politico has the guts to investigate and ask questions.


Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 10:58 p.m.

Give it a few days and Jones will scream racism.


Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 9:26 p.m.

As I've said previously, Barnett Jones needs to be investigated for any other potential wrongdoings while working for Ann Arbor city government. But...I have a feeling that won't happen, since the A2 city government STILL HAS HIM ON THEIR WEBSITE listed as a Safety Services Administrator. No oversight then, and apparently no oversight even after he's left:


Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 8:59 p.m.

This guy just makes all of his employers look totally incompetent!


Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 8:55 p.m.

Connect the dots: Sue McCormick hand picks Jones. Who did Jones hand pick for a department head before he moved onto his new, 2-career life? Who was hand picked next ahead of others 10 times more qualified? Maybe there should be some more investigating into double dipping/fraud.

Rod Johnson

Mon, Jan 14, 2013 : 3:51 a.m.

I give up, who?

Tom Todd

Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 8:41 p.m.

people want to keep a hardworking man down.


Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 9:28 p.m.

I congratulate anyone who is willing to work two jobs, however a department head job is NOT a 40 hr a week job. If that was all he was devoting to either job, he was not doing what he was paid to do. Bad choice and decision on his part.


Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 8:55 p.m.

People want to keep a hardworking con man down.


Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 8:18 p.m.

Sorry "his degree".


Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 8:14 p.m.

Ann Arbor is NOT the home town of Jones. He was born at an Ann Arbor hospital but never lived a day in Ann Arbor even as the police chief. He claimed to have gone to school here but he degree was UM Dearborn. Jones has spent his life misleading and misrepresenting himself and this latest incident just proves that more. What a shameful person.

Boo Radley

Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 8:12 p.m.

Don't forget Chief Jones' retirement and pension from the Chief's job in Sterling Heights before he came to Ann Arbor.

Angry Moderate

Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 7:57 p.m.

When people are able to "retire" and collect a fat, underfunded pension and then go on to start a whole second career, it's a sign that the retirement age for the first pension was too low.

Kai Petainen

Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 7:42 p.m.

Susan McCormick and Barnett Jones -- where have I heard of them before? Oh, I know. When the oil spill happened in Ann Arbor, they were in power. That spill was not solved -- and the city police never bothered to investigate it. It covered the Huron River and it ran for a few hours. The AAFD had 88% confidence of phosphoric acid. Michigan said it was oil. So Chief Jones and McCormick were hired for water related stuff, but does no one care that an unsolved oil spill happened in Ann Arbor and they never spoke up about it? Isn't that important?

say it plain

Mon, Jan 14, 2013 : 3:59 a.m.

I agree with @kittybkahn...I and others appreciate your attention to these matters and your speaking about and writing about them; thanks @Kai Petainen!

Kai Petainen

Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 10:23 p.m.

kittybkahn ... thanks for the kind words. hopefully ann arbor and the news will wake up and realize a bit more as to what is happening around and underneath them.


Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 9:55 p.m.

Thank you so much, Kai, for your article in Forbes about the Pall Plume. I read it the other day and have sent it far and wide and hope to get something done about it. It's just criminal that this hasn't been cleaned up yet. Thanks again!! I hope everyone reads it.

Kai Petainen

Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 8:30 p.m.

It's quite important, as the event touched on nearly every public entity in Ann Arbor -- and it wasn't solved. It's also important because it was the event that 'woke me up' and I realized that all was not well in Ann Arbor. The spill was illegal and it still unsolved. No one has been held accountable for it. But, if it wasn't for that spill, I wouldn't have noticed the other problems in Ann Arbor. So, if people are mad that I speak out on issues, blame the person who spilled the acid/oil into the Huron River and covered it. But it's not the only thing I care about, here's an article in Forbes that I wrote about the dioxane problem in Ann Arbor. The Ann Arbor news has refused to talk about this matter. To put the dioxane in a nutshell -- Pall is not being transparent with the database that houses the public hazardous information, their testing might not be fully compliant with EPA rules, they have lousy communication with the public, and they did not include something (that i consider) 'material' in their 10-K. Yes Pall calls itself a 'leader'. Is that how a leader behaves? Here's the Forbes article. Ann Arbor Chronicle and politicians are aware of it. has stated nothing on it -- but they usually ignore the dioxane issue anyways.

Rod Johnson

Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 7:45 p.m.

Kai--is this the most important thing that has ever happened to you? I don't think I've ever seen a post from you that doesn't discuss this incident.


Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 7:20 p.m.

I concur.


Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 7:19 p.m.

Greed: Noun Intense and selfish desire for something, esp. wealth, power, or food. Synonyms greediness - avidity - avarice - cupidity - rapacity It seems the definition of greed may apply here. But we should withhold negative comments until an official investigation into someone being paid $273,750 when the whole region has awful economic imbalances and people are squatting in the rubble that was once a great city is complete and this clown has time to formulate a ridiculous but somehow defensible explanation and his apologists, (Sue McCormick?) can come to his aid. What an outrage. I may be wrong. He may have been donating his second salary to charity. This is why I don't trust government. Hey Barnett! You're doing something wildly unethical if AFSCME is telling you to get lost.


Mon, Jan 14, 2013 : 2:09 p.m.

City leaders are out of control. They have proven time & time again to waste tax payer money knowing that we are powerless to stop them. He was trained well by his many years in Ann Arbor.

Basic Bob

Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 7:10 p.m.

"She believed it was part time" Either complete denial or lack of due diligence here. In either case, she was hiding the truth from the public. Both need to go. Promptly, and without these silly buyouts they usually get when they get caught red-handed.

Alan Goldsmith

Sun, Jan 13, 2013 : 6:56 p.m.

Thanks for the story. Fascinating snapshot of fraud and mismanagement.