Chief Stanley's status still a mystery
It's still unclear whether part-time Interim Police Chief Richard Stanley will be taking over the post on a permanent basis.
In November, Stanley reportedly told town officials in North Andover, where he serves as full-time Chief, that he would be "transitioning away" from his duties in Wareham. North Andover Town Manager Mark Rees said Stanley reduced his time from two days per week to one weekend day and an occasional night meeting, and would be finished by March.
But Wareham town officials steadfastly maintained that Stanley and the town are in contract negotiations so that he can become the full-time chief here. And town records indicate that Stanley was paid for working in Wareham anywhere from 28 to 38 hours per week in November and the first two weeks of December.
From mid-August until the second week of December, 2010, Stanley earned from Wareham $36,010. In comparison, Wareham paid Stanley $42,802 from August 2009 (when he started) to June 30, 2010, according to the Annual Town Report for fiscal year 2010.
Stanley, who has served as interim chief since Thomas Joyce retired in June 2009, originally said he had no intention of seeking the full-time position. But in March 2010, he was presented to the Board of Selectmen as Town Administrator Mark Andrews' choice for the permanent post. He reportedly entered contract negotiations with the intention of leaving North Andover at the end of the summer.
During his time in Wareham, Stanley is credited with helping the police department earn state certification, obtaining a fleet of new police cruisers, revitalizing the department's K-9 Unit, and adding bike and foot patrol officers to the streets during the summer months.
It's now February, and the town is still without a permanent chief.
Andrews told the Board of Selectmen in early January that he was "very close" to reaching an agreement with the chief, but that the town had called for a Civil Service exam for the position as a "plan B".
“As far as I know, the chief and the Town Administrator are still constructively working together to arrange some things," Selectman Brenda Eckstrom said Thursday.
Selectmen Walter Cruz, Steve Holmes, and Cara Winslow all indicated the same. Andrews and Selectmen Chair Jane Donahue did not immediately return calls seeking comment.
And as far as North Andover knows, Stanley's still staying there.
Board of Selectmen Chair Daniel P. Lanen - also a North Andover police officer - said he hadn't heard anything new since the board was told Stanley would remain in North Andover. Town Manager Mark Rees did not immediately return a phone call requesting comment.
Stanley, perhaps the only person who knows for sure where he'll continue as chief, declined to speak.