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Minneapolis Mayor, Police Chief Deny Tense Working Relationship

Updated: 07/29/2014 11:16 PM
Created: 07/29/2014 7:38 PM KSTP.com
By: Jay Kolls

Multiple sources inside Minneapolis City Hall and the Minneapolis Police Department, tell 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS there is friction right now between Mayor Betsy Hodges and Police Chief Janeé Harteau.

Those same sources, when asked to describe the relationship between two of the most powerful people in city government, they say "the two of them don't get along very well." But, the mayor and the chief tell 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS they have a good working relationship.

Hodges says she has full confidence in Harteau and denies the claims they don't like each other and don't get along. Hodges says she has worked closely with the chief on important public safety issues and feels fortunate to have such a good relationship with her.

Sources say the friction started when Mayor Hodges was campaigning for the job she holds now and announced the city council was buying body cameras for MPD officers.

Harteau acknowledges there was some tension surrounding that issue, but insists it was short-lived. Still, those body cameras are not yet on the officers working the streets.

Harteau's contract expires at the end of 2015. In the coming months, it will become much clearer whether the two do see eye-to-eye when Hodges will have to make a decision to either retain Harteau, or not renew her contract.

It's not that rare for a new mayor and a seated police chief to experience growing pains.

When former Mayor R.T. Rybak assumed office in 2002, the city did not renew the contract of Chief Robert Olson.

Later, also in Rybak's term, Chief William McManus resigned and took a job in San Antonio, Texas.


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