Hawaiʻi County received 44 applications for police chief
Forty-four people have applied for the position of Hawaiʻi County’s police chief, which has been vacant since the retirement of Chief Paul Ferreira on Sept. 1.
Deputy Chief Kenneth Bugado is serving as interim chief while the Hawaiʻi County Police Commission selects a new chief.
In an effort to ensure an unbiased hiring process, the police commission has directed the county’s Human Resources Department to not release the identities of the applicants during this phase in the search process.
The police commission is scheduled to meet Oct. 21 for its regular meeting where updates on the search for police chief will be given.
Recruitment for the position began a month prior to Ferreira’s retirement. The window to apply for the position ran from Aug. 1-28.
According to an email from the police commission secretary, Charisse Correa, the commission has drafted a questionnaire document that will be distributed to the applicants along with a Mahalo letter, thanking them for applying.
Big Island Now reached out to the commission as well as the Human Resources department to get a copy of the questionnaire. Correa told Big Island Now in an email that she was unable to answer any additional questions at this time.
The commission will review all responses of the questionnaire with identities redacted in an effort to be impartial. The names of the applicants remain exclusive with Human Resources.
In June, following the announcement that Ferreira was going to retire, Police Commission chairperson John Bertsch told Big Island Now that the police department is not involved in the selection of the next chief.
When asked if the search for a new police chief would extend outside the state, Bertsch said in June he thinks they have a lot of great candidates on the Big Island, even around the state.
After the questionnaires are reviewed, the police commission will select a pool of applicants to continue the process. At that point, the identities of the finalists will be disclosed.
Bertsch said in June he will invite all members of the public to testify about the finalists: “I think it’s going to be super important to have a transparent hiring process.”