HB 1253 – AS INTRODUCED
HOUSE BILL 1253
This bill authorizes a town or city to appoint a police chief pursuant to a contract specifying that employment is for a certain period of time and includes a probationary period.
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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.
Matter removed from current law appears [
in brackets and struckthrough.]
Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.
STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE
In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Six
AN ACT authorizing contracts and probationary periods for the hiring of appointed police chiefs.
Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:
1 Appointment of Police Chiefs. Amend RSA 105:1 to read as follows:
I. Except as provided in paragraph II, the selectmen of a town, when they deem it necessary, may appoint special police officers who shall continue in office during the pleasure of the selectmen, or until their successors are chosen or appointed. The selectmen may designate one of the police officers as chief of police or superintendent and as such officer the chief of police or superintendent shall exercise authority over and supervise or superintend other police officers, police matrons, watchmen, or constables appointed under the provisions of this chapter, and said police officers, police matrons, watchmen, or constables shall be accountable and responsible to said chief of police or superintendent. Nothing herein shall be construed to preclude or prevent a town from electing constables or police officers at an annual town meeting pursuant to the provisions of RSA 41:47.
II. Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph I, a chief of police or superintendent may be hired by a town or city pursuant to a contract, signed by the chief of police or superintendent and the members of the governing body of the town or city, which specifies that employment is for a certain period of time or subject to a probationary period, or both.
2 Police Chiefs; Dismissal. Amend RSA 105:2-a to read as follows:
105:2-a Police Chiefs; Powers; Dismissal. Subject to such written formal policies as may be adopted by the appointing authority, each chief of police, superintendent of police, or city marshal of any city or town who is appointed rather than elected, shall have authority to direct and control all employees of his department in their normal course of duty and shall be responsible for the efficient and economical use of all department equipment. Such chief, superintendent, or city marshal shall be subject to suspension without pay or dismissal only for cause or subject to the terms of a hiring contract entered into pursuant to RSA 105:1, II, and after he or she has been presented with a written specification of the reasons. Upon such suspension or dismissal, if the dismissal is not governed by the terms of the hiring contract, he or she shall be entitled to a hearing, on the merits and reasonableness of the action, in superior court in the county in which the municipality is located, provided that he or she petitions the clerk of the superior court for such a hearing within 45 days of his or her suspension or dismissal. The court shall have the power to affirm, modify, or negate such suspension or dismissal, based upon its findings.
3 Tenure of Office. Amend RSA 41:48 to read as follows:
41:48 Tenure of Office. Except for appointed police chiefs subject to the terms of a hiring contract entered into pursuant to RSA 105:1, II, any permanent constable or police officer who is either elected under the provisions of RSA 41:47 or appointed for full-time duty under the provisions of RSA 105:1, and who is in compliance with the requirements of RSA 188-F:27, shall continue to hold such office during good behavior, unless sooner removed for cause by the selectmen, after notice and hearing, or unless the town has rescinded its action as provided in RSA 41:47. Any such elected permanent constable or police officer shall be deemed to be a permanent policeman, and entitled to benefits under the provisions of RSA 103 if otherwise qualified.
4 Effective Date. This act shall take effect 60 days after its passage.