A Hummel Report Investigation
The police chief in Portsmouth retired at the end of June after 26 years on the job. There were no gold watches or testimonial dinners for him: that's because he was back at his desk three days later drawing a part-time salary with the new title of ``interim chief,'' while drawing a pension. But it's a $10,000 bonus payment he got after his retirement - and a gag order preventing him from talking about it - that has Jim Hummel asking some questions.
If you want to see Interim Chief Furtado's agreement click here
If you want to see Interim Deputy Chief Cofield's agreement click here.
When a 13-year-old Portsmouth girl disappeared in July, the town's Police Chief, Jeff Furtado, was the face of the department, giving periodic updates to the media.
What many people didn't know is that Furtado had retired from the department three weeks earlier after 26 years on the force. For the first six months of 2013 he had serving as Acting Chief after the previous chief retired.
But on July 1st Furtado's title changed to Interim Chief. He began collecting a $67,00 a year pension, plus Blue Cross medical and Delta Dental coverage. He also got a payout of more than $70,000 for unused sick, vacation and comp time, all provided for in the union contract.
Furtado continued working part-time, earning $1,400 a week in his new role as interim chief, outlined in an agreement drawn up by Town Administrator John Klimm.
Klimm says he asked Furtado and Acting Deputy Police Chief Steven Cofield to stay on after their retirements while he completes a search for a new chief.
Klimm: ``I didn't want a disruption in service and it's a very important position and they were willing to do it during the interim.''
Part of the deal: a lump sum bonus payment of $10,000 for Furtado and $8,500 for Cofield when they began as interims, according to a contract the town provided after The Hummel Report asked for terms of the arrangement last week.
Klimm: ``We're paying the chief half time for full time work and we're getting 50 years of experience with no disruption from now until the time we hire a chief.''
In fact, Furtado and Cofield, according to the contract, are being paid for 29 hours a week each, at approximately the rate they were making when they put in their retirement papers at the end of June.
So why the bonus payments for the two officers?