UPDATED: Shakeup Expected In Police Department Administration

Ackley signs three-year contract as New London police chief; several managerial employees in NLPD expected to retire

Mayor Daryl Finizio said more changes are expected for the administration of the , with a preliminary agreement for several managerial employees to retire.

Police Chief Margaret Ackley, whose reappointment was made official with a new three-year contract, will receive payment for a significant number of compensatory hours accrued during her time at the department.

Finizio said at a press conference at that the agreement has not been finalized and that an announcement on any such retirements would be held at a later date. The news follows an announcement that Finizio decided against renewing the contract of Deputy Chief Marshall Segar, which expires on Saturday; today was Segar’s last working day. Finizio’s reappointment of Police Chief Margaret Ackley was made official today with a new contract.

Chief’s allegations remain private

The announcement comes one day after a City Council request to receive a report on Ackley’s allegations of unethical behavior in the police department. The details of the accusations have not been revealed, but Ackley’s attorney said they provide the basis for a lawsuit against the city charging . Ackley also publicly —a former city councilor and mayoral candidate—of unethical behavior, a charge he said was politically motivated.

Finizio said Beverly Hodgson, who was , was appointed by former Law Director Thomas Londregan rather than the council. He said he has had at least three conversations with Council President Michael Passero on the issue as well as Councilor John Maynard.

Finizio said Ackley has no pending litigation against the city. He said discussions of potential litigation and settlement have been taking place.

“Many cases, almost half of cases, are settled before a case is filed,” he said.

Finizio said these discussions fall under attorney-client privilege and cannot be made public unless there is a resolution and the attorneys agree to disclose the information as part of the settlement. He said the issue is made more complex due to City Charter changes since Ackley’s accusations, and said he is considers that “the issues that were raised were ancillary to the chief’s performance.”

“I am not approaching a situation like this with political consideration,” said Finizio.

Ackley’s contract

The new contract approved for Ackley carries her employment through to the end of 2015. It also increases her salary from $107,500 to $110,725.

Under a retirement agreement initially approved for Ackley, the police chief was to receive a number of benefits in exchange for waiving approximately $199,508.14 for 2,000 hours of compensatory time earned above her 40-hour work week. The contract states that the city will give Ackley a separate paycheck through June to pay wages equivalent to 1,196 hours of the compensatory time, with the remaining hours available as time off. Any remaining hours available at the end of her employment will not be paid.

The contract also includes 190 hours of vacation time; 40 hours of holiday time; medical, dental, and life insurance; and a city vehicle. Ackley may continue to receive single member medical benefits paid by the city upon her retirement, and the city will pay her supplemental Medicare insurance at no cost when she is eligible.

Ackley is required to be a New London resident. The contract may be terminated upon her death or disability, by mutual agreement with the mayor, for just cause, or upon retirement.

Ackley has been a member of the New London Police Department since 1986 and chief since 2009. Finizio after becoming mayor in November’s election.

Deputy chief and union reaction

Finizio said Segar had a one-year, non-renewable contract that was set to expire on Saturday. Finizio said he has made a number of changes in administrative positions and that his decision was not motivated by Segar’s performance or Ackley’s accusations. The deputy chief's position will not be eliminated.

“I would like to thank Deputy Chief Segar for his years of service to the City of New London and wish him well in all his future endeavors,” Finizio said in a press release.

The New London Police Union was critical of the decision on its website, describing Segar as a 20-year veteran who had been “blindsided.” The site also says union president Todd Lynch will be meeting with Finizio on Monday to discuss union accusations that Ackley is not releasing personnel files for officers leaving the department.


Original breaking news story:

Mayor Daryl Finizio has officially renewed the police chief's contract while declining to renew the contract of the deputy chief.

Finizio announced today that Police Chief Margaret Ackley has signed a new contract with the city. He also said that he has chosen not to renew the contract of Deputy Chief Marshall Segar, which expires on Saturday. Today is Segar's last working day.

"I would like to thank Chief Margaret Ackley for agreeing to stay and look forward to working with her in the years ahead," Finizio said in a press release issued through his executive assistant, Zak Leavy. He added, "I would like to thank Deputy Chief Segar for his years of service to the city of New London and wish him well in all his future endeavors."

The new contract confirms Ackley's decision to stay on as chief after Finizio . Ackley, who has been with since 1986 and chief since 2009, had negotiated a retirement agreement which would have gone into effect on Monday but allowed periods of time to opt out.

Ackley's retirement agreement was made public on the same day that she accused then City Councilor and mayoral candidate Michael Buscetto III of . Law Director Jeffrey Londregan said at Tuesday's City Council meeting that Ackley's accusations, including complaints about a hostile workplace and gender discrimination, have been investigated by a judge and that Finizio has received that report. The City Council has not yet received the findings, but made a formal motion to request them from the mayor's office at Tuesday's meeting.

Finizio will be holding press availability at 4 p.m. at City Hall. More information will be posted this evening.

NewLondonSource January 05, 2012 at 04:39 PM
Mr. Cornick: Would you support a figurehead that openly plans to raise taxes in order to fund a fatter government when the rest of the world is in the process of leaning out? Would you support somebody who has the audacity to make municipal employees stand up when he enters the room? Would you support somebody who has openly admitted that he wishes to not honor one of his major campaign promises? If so, it is truly sad that we have people like you living in this town.
John Yannacci, Sr. January 05, 2012 at 04:44 PM
I moved to New London during military service three decades plus ago. We enjoyed it very much until I saw the city and my neighborhood start to deteriorate. My garage was broken into twice and the police told me that nothing could be done about it. I saw the flag in front of my home stolen twice and was told by the police that nothing could be done about it. I saw a woman who lived catty corner to me mauled by a pit bull and virtually nothing was done about it. Now I live in Waterford and we feel safe. Perhaps the restaurants in Waterford don't have scenic views of Electric Boat and Pfizers. Our schools are good; our politicians seem to serve the people; the police department is responsive; our taxes, though not as high as New London, are steadily climbing but I feel we get our money's worth. My gripe with New London is a mayor who is using it as a stepping stone to higher offices and, in doing so, is trampling on the rights of the very people who voted for him. He was chosen over two men, Buscetto and Pero, who served New London proudly. Both have given money, time and effort to the city. What did Finizio give to the kids of New London? The attempt to de-criminalize marijuana. Stay progressive and stay Democratic New London. This is what you asked for.
Thomas Cornick January 05, 2012 at 06:01 PM
We have much in common Mr Yannacci, I moved here during military service and have decided to stay, you moved here during military service and decided to flee. Both of us have witnessed policing as it is to be mostly the work of historians, document a crime scene but do little or nothing beyond that. We in New London appear to be headed towards community policing which has the chance of changing our police from crime historians to crime prevenion. You seem upset with the changes needed to bring this about. We gave both Mr Pero and Mr Buscetto a good long try at getting things to work and either the pace of change or the lack of change has caused us to change the form of our government in order to try something different to get things working. Many people who do not live south of the hospital did not feel well represented by either former council member and for now we are trying something different. If we are wrong I am sure they are waiting in the wings to return .
Thomas Cornick January 05, 2012 at 06:03 PM
As for decriminalizing marijuanna, the state beat us to that and it is a decision whose time has come. The drug itself which has been used safely for over 8000 years is relatively harmless, arrest and incarceration however damage lives, clog the courts, and add unnecessary costs of incarceration. We could continue to do the same things over and over again each time expecting different results but that is the very definition of insanity. The voters here have decided to try some new tactics by both changing the city charter and form of government and bringing in some new blood. I think it is worth giving a little more than a month to see how things work out.
Mary Maynard January 05, 2012 at 07:29 PM
Mary Maynard January 05, 2012 at 08:05 PM
Excuse the typo.Mr. Cornick I agrre with you. This city voted for a new form of gvot. and is going thru some "growing pains" as it were and trying to follow an incomplete Charter accepted by the former city council. The new council may want to revisit the charter to fill in the gaps which there are many. As far as the report goes, while wathching the council mtng Tues. eve I agrred that the council should be given the report; however, after re-listening to Jeff Londregan's opinion I see the dilema: a) The prior council wiped thier hands of the matter due to conflict of interest and Appropriated funds for then Law Dir. Tom Londregan to hire and manage the investigation. b) TomLondregan TOLD the former city council that the re port would be a work product with attorney/ client privledges attached and therefore would NOT be disclosed. The council's right ended after they "hired Attny Londregan to handle the mess. C) The govt. changed dramatically since those monies were appropriated and it is now the MAYOR'S job not the legislative body ( the council), with direction from THE NEW LAW DIR., Jeff Londregan. to recieve the finished work product and take action accordingly ie The City OF NL (mayor) and the two attnys rep.both Paries. If it goes to trial as a civil suit then the report would become public record. If the parties were to settle. usually records are not disclosed- we will have to see... c) question: if tax dollars were used to pay for the report is it FOIable?
Mary Maynard January 05, 2012 at 08:22 PM
One more concern: Did the prior city council appropriate funds in the current budget for legal fees (other than the Law Dir.'s salary)? If there are no monies budgeted for legal settlements etc. then the Mayor would have to ask the Council to appropriate the monies. Now remember, it is the Mayor's job with the city attny. to resolve the matter. If there are no monies in the "till" and the council refuses to appropriate funds, and a settlement is the agreed upon action, then the city of NL could be looking at a lawsuit for breach of a legal settlement contract! It is my hope that mere curosity of the report doesn't "kill the cat".- Unless the report IS FOIable. That is the million dollare question!
Kathy Tinoco January 05, 2012 at 10:19 PM
It amazes me that so many of you are so righteous and think you know ALL the answers. Our Mayor has only been in office for a month, everybody wanted change in our city, he is doing it, and you disgruntled people can only complain. Those who are not citizens of N.L should not concern themselves it's none of your business what happens in our town!! Our Mayor said at the beginning it was going to be an up heal climb (not a quote ) so instead of all the negativity, why don't you watch with your eyes instead of your mouths. N.L. is/was needing a change for the bettter, we could not have sunk much lower and survived. The truth be said " GIVE MAYOR FININZIO AND CHIEF ACKLEY THEIR CHANCE TO PROVE YOU NEGATIVE ON LOOKERS WHO LIKE DRAMA, that N.L. WILL PROSPER ."
John Yannacci, Sr. January 05, 2012 at 10:39 PM
Kathy Tinoco, Do the words, "open and transparent government" ring any bells with you?
Kathy Tinoco January 06, 2012 at 12:26 AM
Yes, but it will not happen over night, it take time to make and do the changes, all I say is give them a chance. We certainly didn't have as you put it, "open and transparent government," in the past. Citizens did not know what was going on or shall I say was supposed to be going on, unless they went to the town meetings. Now for the first time in over a decade we have an elected Mayor and because of that it appears that as usual N.L. is AFRAID of change, well on that note I say it's time people grow up and quit acting like spoiled brats. Thank you for feedback and listening. HAPPY NEW YEARS
Sue P. January 06, 2012 at 01:30 AM
Mary I have lived in New London for 50 years and have seen this city go straight down hill. When people do not agree with you you should try to refrain from calling them names. I personally agree with every word John Yannacci has to say. When you say give Mayor Finizio a chance, we have and everytime he disappoints. He's in over his head. People on the the Day are apoligizing for voting for him. Try to let people have their own opinions without calling them names.
John Yannacci, Sr. January 06, 2012 at 01:45 AM
Mary Maynard, When you can't debate because you're too ignorant of the subject you resort to name calling and innuendo. I don't know where you get the homophobe stuff but as I've said in the past, being called a homophobe (or bigot or misogynist) by a liberal is a badge of honor. It simply proves that they do not have anything intelligent to offer so ad hominem attacks are all that are left. If Buscetto were mayor, he would be man enough to allow the report to go public. Finizio, on the other hand, deems it more important to order subordinates to stand up when he enters a room or else face disciplinary charges. Now, there's a man for you.
Kathy Tinoco January 06, 2012 at 03:14 AM
Thank you Thomas.....FINALLY someone who feels the way I do. IT DOES TAKE MORE THAN A MONTH. I totally agree. Thank you again, there should be more citizens that believe the same. Why won't they stand up and be heard? I know they stood up and were loudly heard when we elected OUR MAYOR.
Kenneth R. Lewis January 06, 2012 at 12:29 PM
Kathy , get real "but it will not happen over night, it take time to make and do the changes" he is the mayor, he can release the documents and be open and transparent from minute 1. Stop making excuses.
Kenneth R. Lewis January 06, 2012 at 12:31 PM
Mar Maynard, Please spell the simple words correctly it ads a lot of credibility to your comments. Unless Councilor John is commenting under your name, then we understand.
John Yannacci, Sr. January 06, 2012 at 01:27 PM
How much time does it take to release a report that was paid for by the taxpayers of New London? Is it because he needed the time to make sure that Ackley got a new contract and that he could get rid of Segar so that he wouldn't upstage her?
Kathy Tinoco January 06, 2012 at 02:15 PM
Thomas Cornick January 06, 2012 at 03:14 PM
DNFTT. (Do not feed the trolls) Or locally (Don't Yannacci me bro) I can only hope that this accurate description of online behavior is not perceived as name calling.
Mary Maynard January 06, 2012 at 03:18 PM
@ Ken- do you have a problem with a WOMAN'S opinion? Get over the typos . Or is that your wife writing this??
Mary Maynard January 06, 2012 at 03:54 PM
@ sue- obviously you haven't read Mr Y's dribble or you wouldn't be defending him from "name calling"! @ Ken I know you and you are definitely NOT the brightest bulb in the bunch- reading a book every week helps.... just a thought....@ Mr.y, oh never mind whats the point..
Alan Green, Jr. January 06, 2012 at 06:44 PM
I love Mike Passero's 'Bingo'. Council will not be a rubber stamp for the Mayor. But I'm glad we have Dem's in both 'houses'. Our city is not one Mayor. It's not 7 council members. We ALL must do our part - government, business, home owners and renters - to make this work - together. One note, however: it seems kind of silly to request that the city follow State and Federal laws. Um. Duh? Doesn't Council have better things to talk about? What a waste of time. Let's see, maybe talk about business development? What can we do for the CGA? How can we create an innovation incubator here in New London? What can we do to make OpSail pay off for the city? It's early, people are jockeying for position and testing the boundaries, but l'd like to see the focus on the people of New London and their future.
NewLondonSource January 06, 2012 at 06:45 PM
@Kathy Tinoco: "....there should be more citizens that believe the same. Why won't they stand up and be heard? I know they stood up and were loudly heard when we elected OUR MAYOR." Perhaps they didn't get the decree that they needed to stand in front of the new dictator, er, mayor. In all seriousness, you bring up a great point - where ARE al; those people who exhuberantly supported his nomination and subsequent election? Why are they ALL so quiet now? Could it be they realize they've been duped and are too embarassed and/or challenged to find anything of positive substance to grab on to? In a somewhat related note - and I'm rubbing my eyes in disbelief - but, in explaining why municipal employees should stand for the Fiz when he enters our presence, did you seriously try to draw an equal comparison between the mayor of a small city, the Pope and the US President? I don't care who our mayor is, that bit of drivel is just a bit ludicrous if you ask me...
Alan Green, Jr. January 06, 2012 at 10:35 PM
Seem to be a lot of Ludicrous fans round here. Count me among those who exuberantly supported his nomination and election. I continue to trust his judgement and applaud his standing by his convictions. And I'll stand for him when he enters a room. Not just because he's a Mayor, but because I have a great deal of respect for him as a man with principles. I wish more people could escape their own myopic expectations of what he 'should' be doing or saying and recognize that he is doing and saying exactly what a leader should. If he really cared about the politics of it all, he'd have broken the law and released the materials. In the meantime, relax. Everything will be known in due time. And I wouldn't expect it to be pretty. As our Mayor said during the campaign, for the Chief's accusations to not be true, our top law enforcement officer would have had to have gotten up in front of the world and lied. I know it's killing everyone, but let's give the process its due time to play out. Til then, it's all speculation and second guessing.
Christine Rene-Howard January 07, 2012 at 01:13 AM
Mood swings??? That right there is a sexist statement!
Christine Rene-Howard January 07, 2012 at 01:32 AM
Mr. Yannacci, It's funny how you accuse someone of doing the very same thing that you've done to me! Do I need to remind you of the comments you left in response to mine on the 'Occupy' article?
Christine Rene-Howard January 07, 2012 at 01:49 AM
NewLondonSource January 07, 2012 at 03:34 AM
@ Alan Green, Jr: " I wish more people could escape their own myopic expectations of what he 'should' be doing or saying and recognize that he is doing and saying exactly what a leader should." I could not disagree more; A leader (at least in my book) is someone who doesn't publicly display egomania in front of their constituents and is certainly not someone who breaks promises made to their supporters. The Fiz has done the above and so much more. Myopic? Somehow I think expecting him to stay true to his word and lead by example is not all that much to ask and should be a general expectation that everyone can rally for.
constance stripling January 07, 2012 at 03:50 PM
I don't live in New London but that should not prevent me from having an opinion. For those who say that I do not have a horse in this race, I disagree. I eat, shop, visit family, pick up my niece and nephew from Harbor school regularly.. I care about New London and have always enjoyed it's edge, arts, and architectual delights. New London is full of character. I'd like to feel that my relatives are safe and are receiving a great education there. Although New London has plenty of character, this does not ensure the same from those on the council. Mr. Buscetto has some splaining to do. The accusations against him regaurding sexual inproprities are on the short list. PLENTY of other women have let him slide, if I am to believe them. Mike will have his day to refute these allegations, again. As for dirt under the rug?......New London must be covered in astro turf. N.L. P.D. and dirt? One word....Valez! My best to my neighbors in the wonderful little city next door.
Chris Kurcinik Goslin January 08, 2012 at 12:20 AM
Me thinks someone is afraid of a woman with power. Mood swings??? Careful...she undoubtedly carries a gun.
FedUP January 08, 2012 at 06:58 PM
Ackley needs to leave with he buddy Fizzio !


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