Board of Trustees approves $40k budget to hire new UPD chief

Corryn Brock, Staff Writer

Eastern’s Board of Trustees unanimously approved an agreement with a consulting firm tasked with finding potential replacements for University Police Department Chief Kent Martin.

The agreement will be with D. Stafford and Associates and cost the university up to $40,000. The budget estimate from D. Stafford and Associates was lower than the estimated cost with the Illinois Public Higher Education Cooperative, another consulting firm considered for the agreement.

Martin will retire in September and Vice President of Student Affairs Anne Flaherty said she would like to have someone hired before Martin retires so they overlap in the transition but does not expect that to happen given the timeframe.

“My goal would be for them to overlap for about a week but reality, from start to finish, these searches tend to be closer to 90 days,” Flaherty said.

Flaherty said the search will be done on a national scale but also hope to take applications from the local area. She added there is one individual currently working for UPD that could meet the qualifications for the job.

Flaherty said they are expecting a successful search.

“They actually think that because we are in a rural area, because of the nature of this position, we will probably have more success than if we were in an urban area because of all the national dialogue,” Flaherty said.

Following the meeting, the board went into executive session pursuant to Section 2, C, 1 of the Open Meetings Act which states that the board may go into executive session to discuss “the appointment, employment, compensation, discipline, performance, or dismissal of specific employees of the public body or legal counsel for the public body, including hearing testimony on a complaint lodged against an employee of the public body or against legal counsel for the public body to determine its validity. However, a meeting to consider an increase in compensation to a specific employee of a public body that is subject to the Local Government Wage Increase Transparency Act may not be closed and shall be open to the public and posted and held in accordance with this Act.”

Corryn Brock can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]