At next week's City Council meeting, members will consider an ordinance that would increase the salary for the Chief of Lafayette Police.
Mayor-President Josh Guillory writes that the increase, to $170,000 annually, will help get more applications to fill the job of chief. Lafayette has had five chiefs since Guillory took office in 2020. The budget has the chief's salary set at $132,017.
"My administration spoke with police chief search firms and they advised that the current salary was inadequate for a city our size in the ever-changing world of law enforcement. We do not know how many candidates we will have for this position as the deadline for applications is June 17, 2022," Guillory wrote. "At this time we are not sure what rate of pay will be offered to the person selected to be our next chief. However, we want to have an adequate amount budgeted to attract as many qualified diverse candidates as possible."
The ordinance is up for introduction at Tuesday's meeting. That means it will come up for final adoption at the next city council meeting.
As of mid May, there were only five applicants, and none of them were from outside Louisiana. Two of the five did not appear to meet the legal qualifications for the post, which requires a certain number of years experience in law enforcement and a college degree. Two of the remaining three are currently members of the Lafayette Police Department.
In May, the Lafayette Fire and Police Civil Service Board extended the application period for another 30 days at the request of the Guillory administration so that a search firm can be hired.
The Lafayette Police Department has had five chiefs of police since January 2020.
When Josh Guillory took office, he requested that Chief Toby Aguillard resign, reportedly because of a poor relationship with Sheriff Mark Garber. Lt. Scott Morgan was appointed interim chief.
The Guillory administration then hired Chief Thomas Glover from the Dallas Police Department and fired him 10 months later. Sgt. Wayne Griffin was appointed interim chief, but two weeks later was placed on administrative leave pending a sexual harassment investigation. He was later fired, too.
The current interim chief, Major Monte Potier, was appointed in October 2021.
Also on the agenda is a joint ordinance that would add a position to Guillory's office, and increase the pay of one existing position. The ordinance would increase the pay of an administrative specialist and add a digital communications specialist.
In his letter requesting the money, Guillory says the administrative specialist has taken on extra duties and obtained a Notary commission. The digital position would help with communications and outreach, and would include a corresponding decrease in temporary employee payments, Guillory wrote.
If you'd like to see the agendas, including backup documentation, click here and select the council meeting date you want to view.