LINCOLN, Maine — Police Chief William Lawrence and other town leaders are negotiating whether the chief will become the next town manager, he said Wednesday.
Already serving as the interim town manager and police chief, Lawrence said he was trying to balance his personal interests with the town’s. He will remain in town government no matter how the negotiations go.
“If things work out well, then we can get the deal done,” Lawrence said. “If it doesn’t work out well, I will continue doing both jobs until they come up with more arrangements and happily go back to being the police chief.”
Town Council members have discussed keeping Lawrence on as town manager and will continue the discussion at their next meeting in February, Chairman Steve Clay said.
If they opt to hire Lawrence as town manager, they would replace him as police chief, Lawrence said.
“The biggest thing [problem] is uncertainty on the part of [town] employees on what is going to happen. Hopefully we can get that straightened out next month,” Clay said. “When you have an interim anything, the workers in that department are going to feel a little uncertainty.
“We owe it to them to get this situation straightened out as quickly as we can,” Clay added.
The council voted 6-0 on Oct. 18 to terminate probationary Town Manager Bill Reed’s contract and appointed Lawrence his temporary successor. Councilor Shaun Drinkwater was absent.
Reed’s six-month review was due in November. He was hired in June after having served as town manager in Veazie.
Lawrence is serving as interim manager for the second time. He served as manager when former Town Manager Lisa Goodwin left to become Bangor’s city clerk.
Lawrence “is doing excellent work,” Clay said. “I am just concerned about the wear on him from doing both jobs.”