Portland taps police chief to replace acting city manager

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PORTLAND — Police Chief Michael Sauschuck has been nominated as acting city manager.

The announcement was made Friday by Mayor Michael Brennan and the City Council. The nomination will be voted on at the April 27 City Council meeting.

Sauschuck’s appointment would take effect May 9.

“I appreciate the support that the mayor and council have shown me with this decision and I look forward to working with the city’s strong team of department heads to continue carrying out a number of new policies and initiatives,” Sauschuck said in a press release.

If the nomination is approved, Assistant Police Chief Vern Malloch will be appointed acting police chief, City Hall spokeswoman Jessica Grondin said.

Grondin added that Anita LaChance, the Recreation and Facilities Management director, will also be appointed to serve as acting deputy city manager. City Recreation Director Sally DeLuca will serve as acting director of recreation and facilities management.

Sheila Hill-Christian, the current acting city manager, is leaving May 8 to become assistant city manager in Cincinnati, Ohio. Hill-Christian was appointed Sept. 4. 2014, the day after former City Manager Mark Rees resigned.

The search for a permanent replacement for Rees is continuing, with a goal of filling the position by July 1.

Grondin said Municipal Resources, a Meredith, New Hampshire-based search firm, will conduct phone interviews with candidates next week, and hopes to select six final candidates by May 6. 

Interviews of finalists are expected the week of May 11, with a selection and contract settled by June 1.

David Harry can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 110 or dharry@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @DavidHarry8.

Sidebar Elements

Portland Police Chief Michael Sauschuck will be the city’s interim city manager.

Portland City Hall reporter for The Forecaster. Baltimore native, lived in Maine since 1989. A journalist since 2005, covering much of Cumberland and York counties. I joined The Forecaster in 2012.