11/16/06 — Board adds three months to Fremont chief's probation

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Board adds three months to Fremont chief's probation

By Lee Williams
Published in News on November 16, 2006 1:45 PM

FREMONT -- Fremont's police chief will have three more months of probation before he can officially take the job, free and clear, if the town board decides to give it to him.

The Town Board of Aldermen voted unanimously in mid-October to extend police Chief Wayne Schwark's six-month probationary period, which was due to expire.

Until Schwark completes his probationary period, he cannot be confirmed as chief.

Town Administrator Kerrie McDuffie said he could not say on the record why the acting chief's probationary period was extended, citing personnel restrictions.

Schwark moved into the position of acting chief in April, and his probationary period would have been over in October, McDuffie said.

Schwark was named to the post after the announcement of the retirement of longtime police Chief Ben Reid Jr. in February

The town administrator said he made a recommendation to the board members that they officially affirm Schwark as the new police chief, but the board declined to follow his recommendation.

"I recommended that they end the probationary period in October," McDuffie said.

Instead, the board decided to extend Schwark's probation. McDuffie said the board did not make a public statement about why the extension was imposed.

When asked about Schwark's job performance, McDuffie said he could not discuss an individual's job performance publicly.

"Most people don't want their employee performance and what they do to be on the front page of the paper," McDuffie said.

McDuffie said the decision regarding Schwark's position will be reviewed in three months.