LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Hutchison appointment not in Dover’s best interest

As a firm believer in transparency, I would like my constituents to be aware of the reason I voted “No” to the appointment of Councilman Hutchison as the Safety Advisory and Transportation Committee chairman at Monday evening’s [March 27] City Council meeting.

Brian E. Lewis

This chairmanship has the additional duty of serving on the newly mandated Police Chief Selection Committee. Councilman Hutchison chose not to run for re-election and will be retiring in May from the City Council, and therefore, will not be allowed to serve on the Police Chief Selection Committee, since this slot is reserved for a sitting council member.

I personally don’t believe that the Police Chief Selection Committee will complete the selection process by the time Councilman Hutchison retires in May. This was a major uncertainty I expressed to Council President Tim Slavin before his recommendation of Councilman Hutchison to fill this vacancy.

My main concern lies with continuity in the selection process. Currently, the committee consists of five individuals: the mayor, council president, acting city manager, chairman of the Safety Advisory and Transportation Committee and Human Resources director. As of this date, 20 percent of the committee has turned over with the retirement of the city manager (Mr. Koenig) and the recent resignation of Mr. Hosfelt, who was elected to Kent County Levy Court.

The Police Chief Selection Committee is already plagued with high member turnovers. I question, what value added is it to knowingly appoint a short-term one-month member to the committee, creating yet another turnover of membership? Does this really serve the best interest of the people of the city of Dover?

I will not crawl into a corner, pull the shutters closed, and pretend this may not cause an issue or potential future litigation if not completed fairly. I am just looking out for the best interest of the taxpayers of this city and not political gain like some.

Councilman Brian E. Lewis
Second District, City of Dover

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