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Council hires firm to recruit new police chief
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The search for Turlock’s next full-time police chief kicked off Tuesday, when the Turlock City Council approved hiring Teri Black and Co. to conduct an executive recruitment process.

The recruiter will be tasked with finding a successor to former Chief Gary Hampton, who left to head the Tracy Police Department on July 31. Since then, Dave Young has served as the Interim Chief of Police.

The use of an outside recruiter drew concern from Councilwoman Mary Jackson, who believed Turlock could save money by conducting the recruitment in-house.

“I just don't feel comfortable with going to an outside agency,” Jackson said.

Teri Black and Co.’s services will cost the City of Turlock $25,000, which will be funded from the current Police Department budget using funding which would otherwise have been part of the police chief salary. According to City Manager Roy Wasden, conducting the process in-house would cost approximately $22,000 considering advertising and the possible addition of a part-time employee to cover the additional work load.

An experienced police chief recruiter, Teri Black and Co. also has connections to potential chiefs that in-house recruitment efforts would be unable to make, Wasden said.

"We believe we'll get a much better product using Terri Black and Co.," Wasden said.

Jackson ultimately voted against the hire, but the other four members supported using Teri Black and Co. Wasden expects the recruitment process to be completed by December.


Upgrade costs fall on developers

Developers will shoulder some of the costs of converting Turlock Development Services computers to an updated system for tracking permits, inspections, project planning, and code enforcement, following council action on Tuesday.

“We are adding to the cost of development,” said City Engineer Mike Pitcock.

The nearly $160,000 upgrade will be paid for, in part, by a 5 percent record management fee charged on certain permits, such as encroachment and grading permits.

The new system is said to improve communications and efficiency, and would allow for online permit tracking. Currently, Development Services has no formal record management program, has not been scanning documents, and sees separate departments keep individual spreadsheets of information, which must be discussed in face-to-face meetings.

Already, the city’s financial department has been converted to the new system, which city staff said is more cost effective.

Despite concerns about adding to the cost of development, the council unanimously approved the upgrade, sans-Mayor John Lazar who left the council meeting early to attend a meeting at his child’s school.


On Tuesday, the Turlock City Council also:

Took action to close Tegner Road at Taylor Road. Tegner Road will become a cul-de-sac.
Closure of the road was initially approved on Feb.22, 2000, but was never completed. Traffic on Tegner Road must currently navigate a one-lane bridge over Turlock Irrigation District Lateral No. 3.Appointed Lew Boyle, a retired school teacher, to the Turlock City Arts Commission.Appointed Buster Lucas, an electrical contractor and developer, and James Brenda, a contractor and builder to the Development Collaborative Advisory Committee. They will replace Axel Gomez and Jim Theis, both of whom resigned in July.

To contact Alex Cantatore, e-mail or call 634-9141 ext. 2005.