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Circleville City Police Positions Can Be Filled by Outside Candidates After Civil Service Vote


Circleville – Mayor Michelle Blanton has called for the Civil Service to expand the candidate pool for the Chief and Deputy Chief positions, citing a shortage of internal candidates. Currently, the department lacks permanent leadership in its top ranks, with only one Sergeant having completed probation. To address this, Mayor Blanton has invoked ORC 124.44, which allows for extraordinary circumstances.

Circleville operates under Ohio Revised Code Title 7, wherein key administrative positions are elected or appointed. This includes the Police Chief, as outlined in Section 124.44, which mandates promotions from within for positions above patrol officer.

Acting Chief Kenny Fisher is currently the sole eligible candidate within Circleville, meeting the rank and probation criteria. However, a provision in the statute allows the city to request outside candidates in special circumstances.

In a recent meeting involving the City, Circleville’s Police Union, and the Civil Service Commission, Mayor Blanton proposed suspending competitive examination requirements to broaden the search for candidates with requisite managerial and leadership skills. The Civil Service agreed, invoking provisional emergency appointments to allow for external candidates.

The Circleville Police Union advocated for internal candidates, Sergeants Jon Farrelly and Eric Nicholson, who narrowly missed eligibility due to probationary time. After discussion, the Civil Service agreed to reduce the probation period to six months, enabling both Sergeants to compete.

Mayor Blanton sees this decision as advantageous for Circleville, maximizing potential candidates to ensure the city’s best interests are served.

Currently Acting Chief Kenny Fisher and Acting Deputy Chief Farelly are running the department. City Mayor Blanton is currently still acting as Safety Director.

Mayor Blanton said that they are working with the Ohio Chiefs Association, and Chiefs of Police Association to create a panel to interview the candidates to help make that decision.