After Chattanooga Police Chief Bobby Dodd retired at the end of 2013, Mayor Andy Berke put together a search committee in order to find Dodd’s permanent replacement, and yesterday, the City Council made a controversial decision to approve funding of up to $39,000 to a Washington, D.C.-based research organization for a nationwide candidate search.
While some praised the decision, citing the need to find the most qualified person for the job, others criticized it, saying that the Police Chief should be a local person who understands the challenges of the community and is familiar with the local government.
Addressing the criticism directly, Mayor Berke assured constituents that the search would be conducted locally, as well as nationally, by creating “Help Wanted” signs and posting them around town.
“I hit Frazier Avenue pretty hard today,” said Berke, who was holding a staple gun and a roll of transparent tape. “I’m going to hand out some flyers at the show at JJ’s tonight, too. You never know – that punk rocker you see with the gauged ears and pierced septum just might be the next Police Chief.”