Possible Succession Planning at the Police Department
At a recent Finance Committee budget meeting, member Bob Hargraves asked Chief Donald Palma about one of the initial requests in his budget to create the position of Deputy Chief, and move Groton Lt. James Cullen to that post as part of a succession plan.
Chief Palma responded, "I am not going to be here forever and I believe we need a succession plan." He pointed out that it costs the town $25,000 to $30,000 to conduct a search assessment, adding, "I need someone who can step in for me. This would give him a little more clout as a Deputy in order to act for me," adding that it would also help with grant proposals.
Town Manager Haddad said that he had no issue with moving the Lieutenant to Deputy Chief down the road, but feels that the School Resource Officer has the most impact."
Finance Committee member Barry Pease asked why a Deputy title would be better with a grant proposal. The Chief responded that grants require a chief officer, for audits as well a re-grants, noting that the Department is in the running for two grants for equipment and manpower. He added that this is the fourth year the department has applied for a manpower grant and, unfortunately, in years past, Groton did not make the cut.