CLEO Certification

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: How long is CLEO Certification valid? 
A: Certification will expire at the same time as your POST license and must be renewed by resubmitting an application. 

Q: My post license expires next year, does that mean I have to reapply in a year or how would that work?
A: If there is less than a year left, the renewal would occur with the following POST cycle, essentially allowing a 3+ year certification.

Q:Why does my city administrator or mayor have to sign off on my application?
A: This is to verify your years of service as either a chief or a command level officer. 

Q: How do I submit my application? 
A: After completing the application, organize all the supporting material in corresponding category sections. Scan the application and supporting material in black and white to create a digital pdf file and submit it to [email protected] or upload it to the MCPA website at (link here). Please keep all original documentation for audit purposes.

Q: How do I pay the $100 application fee?
A: You can either pay the non-refundable processing fee of $100 with a credit card on the MCPA website at (insert direct link) or mail a check for $100.00 payable to the Minnesota Chiefs of Police Association to: Minnesota Chiefs of Police Association CLEO Certification Program 1951 Woodlane Drive Woodbury, MN 55125.

Q: What qualifies as “other credits/hours” in Category 2D of the application and how many points will be awarded for each?
A: This will be determined on a case by case basis. The CLEO Certification Task Force will review any non-POST Board approved and/or non-traditional credits or hours and determine their value. 

Q: In Category 5B of the application that references the authoring of professional law enforcement articles, what type of articles are accepted?
A:  The MCPA will accept publications that are edited and approved by an entity outside of your department or agency. For example, if you write an article for your city’s newsletter or website, and it’s approved by a staff member outside of your department, it will be accepted. An article written for any of the Minnesota Chiefs of Police Association’s publications (online or print) is acceptable. You may not count any publication (newsletter, online blog/article) that your agency oversees or approves. 

Q: How far back will the MCPA accept my courses, trainings, community service and professional contributions? 
A: In your initial application for CLEO Certification, the MCPA will review your professional experience, community service and training dating back five years. When renewing your CLEO Certification application every three years, the MCPA will only review your history for the previous three years.

Q: Do I have to be a current CLEO to be eligible for certification? 
A: CLEO Certification will be awarded to qualifying CLEOs who are currently employed as CLEOs. Licensed Peace Officers who are not employed as a CLEO can submit an application, and, if meeting all of the qualifications, will receive a Letter of Eligibility. If they become employed as a CLEO, they will receive full Certification at their qualifying tier. Like full Certification, CLEO Eligibility is good for three years and will expire at the same time as a POST license.

Q: Do I have to attend the CLEO & Command Academy to be eligible for CLEO Certification? 
A: The core curriculum of the CLEO and Command Academy is an essential component to the MCPA certification process. But if you have not attended the academy, please provide documentation and/or a memo/letter that clearly states where you have acquired the skills which are covered under the topics in Appendix C of the application. The MCPA has determined the MSA Sheriff’s Academy meets this requirement. The CLEO Certification Task Force will review your information and determine on a case-by-case basis if the CLEO and Command Academy requirement can be waived. 

Q: Why do I have to renew my CLEO Certification every three years? 
A: The point of the certification is to ensure CLEOs and command staff are regularly engaged and active in ongoing educational opportunities, community events and leadership programs to serve their departments and cities as best as possible.

Q: How will I learn that I've been approved for CLEO Certification? 
A: Following a review of your application and supporting materials by the CLEO Certification Task Force, the MCPA will send you a letter and a certificate that reflects your appropriate Tier Level of certification.

Q: What if I fail to fill out the entire application or leave out supporting documentation? 
A: The task force strongly encourages you to complete the application in its entirety before submitting it. If additional information or documentation is needed you will be contacted by e-mail. Applications needing additional information will be set aside until that material is received. The review process is done quarterly at minimum - depending on volume of applications received.

Q: What if my application is rejected, what’s the appeal process? 
A: If your application is rejected by the CLEO Certification Task Force, you will receive an email from the MCPA that states the reason why your application was not approved. You will then have the opportunity to petition the task force by sending an email to [email protected] In that email, please address the reasons why you believe you should be certified. The task force will review your comments and your application a second time and make a decision. The task force may ask you to attend one of its meetings to seek certification.