Council may seek delay in chief hiring process


POSTED: Tuesday, November 17, 2009
This story has been corrected.  See below.

City Council Public Safety Chairman Donovan Dela Cruz said he wants a delay in the selection of a police chief and plans to present a resolution calling for an investigation into the process.

Dela Cruz is also preparing to present the City Council with a resolution expressing “;no confidence”; in Honolulu Police Commission Chairwoman Christine Camp, who did not appear as promised at his committee meeting yesterday.

Dela Cruz said he plans to introduce the resolutions at the Council's meeting at 10 a.m. tomorrow.

A letter requesting a delay was also sent to Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann, who appointed Camp.

Some Council members spoke in favor of taking action to reprimand Camp after she failed to appear yesterday to respond to complaints from the public about the commission altering the finalists list for police chief.

“;We're not trying to assert our authority to in any way affect the selection process,”; Dela Cruz said. “;What we're striving for is transparency and accountability. We want to make sure that there is going to be public confidence in the final decision.”;

A committee selected by the commission narrowed the candidates to four finalists but then decided to broaden the selection to two more persons.

Two selection committee members, William “;Buzzy”; Hong and Ron Taketa, resigned on Nov. 5, a day after the six names were chosen.

In a letter Thursday, Camp said she would be attending the Public Safety and Services Committee meeting yesterday.

;[Preview]  Chairwoman Does Not Show Up At HPD Council Meeting

The Commission Chairwoman spent the day interviewing police chief finalists which is one reason why she did not show up at a council meeting.

Watch ]


But she asked the Public Safety committee to reschedule the meeting for tomorrow if possible because the Police Commission was interviewing candidates for police chief.

Camp, by phone yesterday evening, said the interviews kept her and the other police commissioners busy throughout the day and into the evening.

“;We wanted to be there,”; Camp said, referring to the committee meeting.

Camp said she plans to speak with Council members tomorrow morning at their meeting.

Meanwhile, the commission is scheduled to pick a new police chief at 2:15 p.m. tomorrow, said Camp, who called the process “;transparent”; and justified.

“;It's a controversy that's really not a controversy,”; she said.

Chris Lum Lee, a resident planning to run for the Council, testified that the addition of two police chief candidates left the impression that those making the selection had a candidate in mind who was not among the four finalists.

“;It's everything but nonpolitical in this appointment,”; Lum Lee said.

Van Horn Diamond, another resident, said the commission should pick the police chief from the four finalists and that an audit should be conducted into the selection process.








The Honolulu Police Commission broadened the number of candidates for Honolulu police chief to six from four. Originally, this story said the selection committee added the additional names.