Rance Deware named Lyndeborough police chief

LYNDEBOROUGH – Current Officer-in-Charge Rance Deware was named police chief in a 10-minute meeting held by two members of the Lyndeborough Select Board on Wednesday, Oct. 23.

Selectman Fred Douglas was delayed and arrived after the vote was taken.

At the end of the selection process, Deware was the only candidate. Two others had withdrawn.

Chairman Kevin Boette said he had spoken with members of the citizens’ panel and the Professional Committee, “And the impression is he’d make an excellent police chief. Many (area police departments) have worked with him.”

Arnold Byam added, “It isn’t often you a chance to test drive a position,” noting Deware had been doing well.
Deware has been with the department since October 2011 and office-in-charge since last year, following the resignation of Thomas Burke.

The town has been without a police chief for several years, opting instead for the officer-in-charge format. At Town Meeting in March, voters narrowly approved hiring a chief and also established a procedure for selecting one.

That procedure was followed, but there were few applicants.

Following the vote, former Selectman Bob Rogers, a member of the Citizens’ Selection Panel said, “I hope you talk among yourselves as to why we had so few applicants, when other towns apparently haven’t.”

He noted Deware seems to be having trouble finding officers.

Boette said, “If we can create a reliable, stable police department – as I think we can – we’ll get more candidates.”

Byam said, “Other towns may have been looking for a full-time chief with benefits.”

One of the candidates dropped out because there were no benefits offered, Boette said.

Rogers said, “In order to get the best candidates, we may have to offer some.”

The position is for 32 hours per week. The salary will be negotiated with Deware.