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Ovilla appoints Gonzales acting chief of police

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Ellis County Press
OVILLA - Lt. Sal Gonzales was unanimously selected acting police chief by the Ovilla City Council at its Jan. 8 meeting.

Gonzales fills the position caused by the retirement of former chief Sonny Pfeifer.

Gonzales has worked for the Ovilla Police Department since 1996, and previously served as a police officer in Midlothian.

Formal action of the council to

permanently fill the position will take place by March 1, according to Scott Campbell, city administrator.

Gonzales was congratulated on his appointment following the action by the mayor and various Council members. Gonzales asked for prayers of protection for him and all police officers, particularly at this time when escaped prison convicts are reportedly on the loose in the metroplex.

Annual reports were presented by each department head.

Fire Chief Donny Pickard noted in his report the average response time for the firefighters to arrive at emergencies in the city was 5.7 minutes last year. There were 191 calls on fires of various types in 2000, most requiring more than one fire truck.

Ovilla firemen are presently learning a new computerized reporting system for making reports after a fire, Pickard said. However, the new system is making the reporting task lengthy and complex.

Pickard said the firefighters will continue to learn the new system, and the department will eventually benefit from its use.

G.T. Mulholland, a regular speaker during the citizen appearance portion of Council meetings, presented an article in the Ellis County Press, dated Dec. 7, which discussed a letter to the editor he had written complaining about the Council's alleged violation of the Open Meeting Act on Oct. 23.

Mulholland disagreed with Campbell's explanation in the article and maintained his charge certain acts and practices of the Council have been out of compliance with the Open Meeting Act.

The council and mayor did not respond to Mr. Mulholland's statements.

The Council also approved routine financial transactions and, at the close of the public meeting, convened in executive session to consider personnel evaluations.

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