City Times Staff
Interim Police Chief Marty Skibba has been named the top choice for full-time police chief.
Gary Wescott, president of the Police and Fire Commission, said a letter should be drafted and sent to Skibba sometime on Tuesday, after which Skibba would have ten business days to reply. He also called the commission’s decision a tough one.
“It was a photo finish,” Wescott said Monday. “We had so many really great candidates, which made it that much tougher.”
Skibba, who has been acting chief since summer, was among four finalists for the position. After a formal letter offering employment is sent to Skibba, he would then need to sign the letter, accepting the job.
“I am humbly honored to be offered the position, as a steward of this community, and will be accepting the city’s offer,” Skibba said via phone Monday night, adding he expects to sign and return the letter the “same day I receive it”.
Skibba was named the top choice of four finalists, to include Daniel M. Meister, police chief for the City of Columbus, Wis.; Harold J. Minch, Capt. of the Collier County Sheriff’s Office, Naples, Fla.; and Julie Nash, Cmdr. of Patrol Operations in Geneva, Ill.
“This presents so many opportunities for promotions, potentially from within the department, so we have a lot of work ahead of us,” Skibba added.
Skibba, 47, started with SPPD in June of 1991 and was promoted to assistant chief in January of 2011.
The police chief earns $86,878. Under city policy, Skibba’s employment would be conditional at first, subject to a successful standard medical exam and six months of probationary employment.
When asked which qualities tipped the scales, Wescott said it came down to Skibba’s experience in house.
“Some [commissioners] felt an internal candidate, a known chief- I mean, he’s been interim chief since July- so they’ve been able to judge his performance,” Wescott said. “I think when it’s that close [between candidates], it certainly helps when you have an incumbent. But this process went on so long because we had really good candidates. It was close.”
Wescott did not immediately know when Skibba would be sworn in as chief. Check back for updates.