GRAFTON — It is a sure bet a couple of the top earners in Grafton last year won’t repeat next year.
That’s because there’s been a changeover in top leadership roles.
Former Police Chief Lonnie Carroll was placed on paid leave beginning Aug. 27, 2012, and terminated the following day. Fellow part-time patrol officer, Dan Clark, was appointed chief effective Aug. 29, 2012.
Mayor Megan Flanigan has refused to explain why Carroll’s position within the village was terminated, only saying, “it’s in the best interest of the village” and that the village is “moving forward.”
Before being fired, Carroll had been out on leave, and had just returned to his job when he was terminated. In his absence, Phil Stoker, who had been one of the department’s two full-time officers, was promoted to lieutenant, bypassing the previous second-in-command, Sgt. Ken Jake.
“Our police department is a large portion of our general fund, but it also (provides) a very important function in the village keeping our residents and businesses safe,” she said. “We will continue to look at ways to save money across the board; but I am confident that we will keep moving in a positive direction.”
And as recently as Feb. 18, Patrick Mudge resigned from his position as village administrator, stating that at times, he and Village Council did not see eye-to-eye on some issues. Mudge also knew his position as safety-service director would be short-lived.
“We no longer have a need for a safety-service director, something that we did not have prior to 2012,” Flanigan said. “Police Chief Clark is doing an outstanding job and has made great progress in reducing costs and running the department efficiently.”
Despite the issues facing the village, Flanigan is hopeful for the future.
“We are facing the same issues as other communities when it comes to our budget,” Flanigan said. “Costs are increasing and revenues are decreasing. We are making every effort to balance our budget while maintaining efficiency and providing the best services to our residents.
“We continue to look for creative ways to fund services and projects that will help the village of Grafton prosper.”
Top 10 Grafton earners
- Hobart Wells, wastewater superintendent, $56,229.24.
- Greg Kendle, service department superintendent, $54,786.20
- Dan Byrd, electric department superintendent, $54,451.41
- Robert Kowalski, street department laborer, $48,399.20
- Patrick Mudge, village administrator and safety-service director, $47,894.37
- Linda Bales, clerk-treasurer, $44,320.90
- Ken Jake, police sergeant, $42,388.96
- Phil Stoker, police lieutenant, $41,983.75
- Scott Kilgore, police patrolman, $39,533.83
- Lonnie Carroll, former police chief, $38,425.84