Helper City Council Voices Many Questions Regarding the Possible New Helper Police Chief

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During the virtual meeting hosted by the Helper City Council on Thursday evening, they discussed the possible appointment of the new Helper City Police Chief. Mayor Lenise Peterman began by stating, in the past, when selecting a chief in Helper’s history, there was never an interview panel or such action.¬†Rather, the Mayor selected, appointed and presented to the council for approval.

Mayor Peterman chose to alter and create an interview panel. The only person from the council that was sitting on the panel was Councilwoman Amanda Wheeler, as she serves as the Mayor Pro Temp. However, Mayor Peterman stressed that the interview panel has no decision-making authority.

The panel was created to present guidance and feedback of the candidates for the position. The candidates were given a list of questions provided by Price City Police Chief Brandon Sicilia and they did not deviate from said questions.

From there, five were chosen and Mayor Peterman performed a second interview. She said that it was grueling process for both the panel and those that were applying for the position. In the end, Chris Gigliotti was selected to be the new chief. Mayor Peterman then explained her reasoning for the choice.

She stated that if she were asked when previous Chief Trent Anderson resigned her reaction would have been that they would have to go outside to get the skills needed to keep the police department moving forward. However, she discovered that was not the right reaction. In meeting with Gigliotti, a few things came to light. One was his loyalty to Helper, as he has served for 15 years.

Mayor Peterman also stated that a patrol officer approached her and said that, in the past, they would not have supported naming Gigliotti as chief. After working with him, however, that officer stated that he/she completely believes that he should be the next chief.

“That was very meaningful,” stated Mayor Peterman.

She continued by expressing that many positive things came through while interviewing him. Mayor Peterman stressed that there were a number of great candidates to choose from and it was a hard choice, but she felt that Gigliotti was a great fit for Helper. The floor was then opened for questioning, which began with Councilwoman Michelle Goldsmith asking about his various training, which he assured he was adept.

Questions were then voiced on his previous work experience, such as if he had ever violated the laws of the research database. As Gigliotti answered questions, they began to enter a tangent that caused Helper City Attorney Dominique Kiahtipes to inform the council that, if such questioning continued, the council would need to enter into a closed session.

Following Kiahtipes’ statement, Councilwoman Donna Archuleta quickly motioned to enter into a closed session, which was seconded by Councilwoman Malarie Matsuda. Ultimately, the chief appointment was tabled, possibly to be announced at the June council meeting. The virtual meeting may be viewed in its entirety by clicking here.

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