EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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January 28, 2014

Atkinson police chief position to remain part time

Selectmen reverse earlier decision


The search for a full-time chief was already underway, but revamping the search will likely delay things.

“It could be anywhere from a month later to even two to three months,” Innes said.

Innes had hoped to have a new chief in place by the end of February.

The town had received 45 resumes and had handed them over to the New Hampshire Association of Chiefs of Police earlier this month. But now, Thompson said, he is worried about the quality of the chief they will get for the position.

“One of my major concerns is that you’ll severely decrease the qualified candidates by making it part time,” Thompson said. “It makes it less likely that the chief will stay for a long time, creating a revolving door at that position for years to come.”

Innes said the town will proceed, despite his beliefs that the town still needs a full-time chief.

“The NHPCA and Chief Brackett both think we need a full-time chief,” Innes said. “Reports and studies say we need a full-time chief. We think there’s a need, but we don’t think the town residents as a whole are ready to make that transition and the selectmen take direction from residents.”

Innes said the part-time position will be 25 hours per week. The salary and benefits have yet to be determined.

“If we want a good chief, obviously we are going to have to pay for that,” Innes said.

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