Ed Miklus: Views will change
No matter how qualified an interim city manager, his view of the city of Steamboat Springs will be in his rearview mirror a few months after having made the critical decision to hire our next chief of police. For you NFL fans this is akin to hiring a head coach before the general manager.
Let’s role play for a moment. If you were a high level, competent law enforcement professional, why in heaven’s name would you uproot your family and accept a position in a city where you don’t know who your boss is going to be and where the majority of the governing body will be changing in a month’s time?
Conversely, if you are applying for the permanent city manager’s position wouldn’t you want to choose who is arguably the most important department head in your administration? Would you not resent an interim that has no ties to the community making that decision before you even got here?
Interim City Manager Suiter should reconsider his decision to be the hiring agent for our next chief of police. It is only a new city council and permanent city manager, the sorely needed fresh start, hiring our next chief of police that can restore legitimacy to our police department and build the community’s trust in that department.
If Mr. Suiter won’t reconsider, there is one positive parting thing the outgoing City Council can do. They can pass a motion prohibiting the interim city manager from making the appointment and then in a month ride off into the sunset singing “Happy Trails.”
Absent that, the incoming city council and permanent city manager should require the newly appointed chief of police to reapply for the position so that comprehensive due diligence can be completed and the residents of Steamboat Springs can be assured that we have the best possible candidate.
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