Hooksett hands off consulting work to new police manager
The Hooksett Police Commission has terminated its contract a month early with Public Safety Strategies Group, the consulting firm hired to assist in the implementation of its 2011 audit recommendation for the department.
Recently hired interim Police Manager Thomas Burke will take up PSSG’s work.
“You have to put it into proper context. With Tom Burke here, he’s the one that’s going to be doing what you’re doing,” Police Commission Chairman Joanne McHugh told PSSG Public Safety Director Kym Craven Tuesday night at the commission’s meeting.
PSSG’s work with the town will cease in November.
PSSG officials met with Burke Tuesday afternoon for the first time to discuss transition plans, in part due to their termination letter’s stipulation that the firm provide “transitional support” for the department.
Of particular concern to PSSG was the transmission of information related to employee complaints.
Craven requested a meeting with McHugh and Burke to discuss employee concerns. Burke declined, suggesting he would rather see the firm complete their revisions of the department’s standard operating procedures.
“I’d like to get hands-on myself,” Burke said. “Instead of reading things off paper, I’d rather speak to people individually and see what their concerns are.”
PSSG countered that many of the concerns were made by employees who wished to remain anonymous.
“It took us a little bit of time to build the trust and confidence of the employees here. No offense to Mr. Burke, but he’s not going to hear the true story day one. It’s going to take time,” said Alan Stuart, program manager with PSSG.
“There’s a hesitancy on the part of some of the employees to come forward ... because some of their concerns are about you,” he told commissioners. “None of these employees are going to come to him and say anything derogatory about you.”
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