City moves to second step in hiring police chief

"Seventy-two people are interested in becoming Federal Way's new police chief.Applications were due earlier this month, and police chiefs from 21 different states responded. Of those, 11 are from Washington, three are from Oregon and two are from California. There also are applicants from Florida, New York, Illinois, Nevada, New Jersey, Arizona, Texas and other states, said Mary McDougal, the city's human resources manager.While pleased with the number and quality of the applicants, city officials were disappointed that there weren't more applicants from closer to home, McDougal said, especially because of the city's efforts to attract applicants from Washington, Oregon and California.We were actually a little surprised we didn't receive more from Washington, she said. We hoped to receive more from Washington.City officials plan to pare the 72 applications to the one dozen to two dozen best applicants. Those who make the cut will receive a written questionnaire with six to eight questions. We want a little better idea of some of their experience, their philosophy, she said.The public will have a chance to meet the finalists, once the number of applicants is narrowed even further. The Federal Way City Council isn't expected to select the new chief until later this year.The new chief will lead 146.5 full-time equivalent employees, including 104 sworn officers, in the Department of Public Safety. The position will pay up to $95,000 a year, plus eligibility for an annual performance bonus equal to about 8 percent of the salary.Ron Wood, who was hired as police chief in 1996 when the police department formed, resigned in July following talks with City Manager David Moseley. Neither Wood nor Moseley would say why Wood resigned. Wood is on unpaid administrative leave until Jan. 26, 2001.Deputy chief Tom Chaney is acting as interim police chief until the city hires a replacement for Wood. Instead of hiring a search firm, as it did last year to find a new city manager to replace Ken Nyberg, the city is conducting its own search for Wood's replacement. City Manager David Moseley, who was hired late last year, came from Ellensburg. For the police chief search, the city placed advertisements in The Herald in Everett, the Spokesman Journal in Spokane, The Seattle Times, the Oregonian, the Federal Way Mirror and the Tacoma News Tribune, McDougal said.The ad has also appeared on a number of Internet job bulletins and in law enforcement publications, McDougal said.The city sent a recruitment brochure to about 90 police chiefs in Washington. A total of about 400 brochures were were mailed to law enforcement agencies and police chiefs in Washington, Oregon and California, McDougal said. The brochures to chiefs in Oregon and California only went to those in cities with populations of at least 50,000 people. "

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