This has been confirmed by reports fromCBS 3 Springfield and the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel website.
Flynn’s acceptance spares the city of the $155,000 it would have to pay in severance if asked to resign, as Sarno demanded.
The Journal-Sentinel news report mentioned the political implications in Springfield, namely that Milwaukee’s addition of Flynn to the list was a contributing factor in Mayor Charles Ryan’s loss to Domenic Sarno. The Milwaukee report also noted how given that Flynn’s temporary successor is already in place, Deputy Chief William Fitchet, Flynn may be permitted to leave sooner than the 30 days his contract requires. Fitchet served in that capacity after former Police Chief Paula Meara was bought off and before Flynn was chosen.
With the election and Milwaukee’s police chief selection behind us, it is time for Springfield to move on. It is not necessary that action be taken immediately, but Fitchet cannot effectively run the Police Department with an “acting” affixed to his name indefinitely.
Given that Fitchet was a finalist in the original search, it only stands to reason that to give him the position officially is hardly out of order. Another nationwide search will only yield more drama and more trauma for a city that has been rattled by these recent political/governmental tremors. In other words it’s a waste of time. This feeling is shared by Sarno and outgoing City Council President Kateri Walsh, according to the Republican.
In the short term, the efforts should be focused on the rank and file in the department. They need effective leadership and the necessary resources. The Control Board can give them that. What their next move will be is anybodies’ guess. When the Control Board convenes in January, there will be nobody present who took part in Flynn’s selection process.