Curtis wants new police chief by Sept. 9

By on June 12, 2009

New committee charged with making it happen
by Martha Quetsch
MAPLE PARK—The No. 1 task for Maple Park’s new Personnel & Communications Committee will be to select a police chief.

Village President Kathy Curtis wants that to happen by Sept. 9.

She chose trustee Deb Armstrong, an experienced human resource director, to lead the committee’s process toward that goal.

“Her skill set will be essential as we define the criteria for the role of chief, screen applicants, interview and select a candidate,” Curtis said.

The Maple Park Police Department has been without a police chief since village officials decided 13 months ago not to re-appoint former Chief Steve Yahnke.

The three-month deadline to find a new police chief is ambitious, but necessary, Curtis said.

“(It) is a lot of work for a short time frame, but we can not continue to operate without a chief, so we set high expectations on ourselves,” she said.

Trustees will discuss the police chief search issue during their Committee of the Whole meeting at 7 p.m. Monday, June 15.

Yahnke, while working part-time as Maple Park’s police chief, also was employed full time at the Kane County Sheriff’s Department. Sheriff Pat Perez opposed Yahnke’s working for both law enforcement agencies, saying he should not wear two badges.

During her campaign this spring for Village President, Curtis said the lack of leadership on the Police Committee delayed the hiring process.

The Police Committee no longer exists. Curtis created three new committees to replace the former Finance, Streets, Water and Sewer, Parks and Grounds, Police and Planning committees.

In addition to Personnel and Communications, the other two new committees are Infrastructure; and Finance, Public Relations and Development.