METHUEN (CBS) – Methuen Police Chief Joseph Solomon and Police Captain Gregory Gallant have been placed on paid administrative leave after a review of department contracts found “a failure of leadership at all levels of city government.”
The Office of the Inspector General found Methuen Police Department contracts, approved in 2017 by then Mayor Stephen Zanni and the City Council, included excessive raises for Solomon and other superior officers.
According to the OIG, Gallant drafted the final contract and added language that had never been agreed to. Mayor Zanni signed the contract without fully reviewing it.
Gallant’s revisions gave superior officers raises of 35% to 183% according to the report.
“Chief Solomon, who represented the City in contract negotiations with both the superiors’ union and the patrol officers’ union, knew about unapproved compensation language but failed to alert his colleagues on the City’s negotiating team,” the OIG found. “The unapproved language indirectly – but substantially – increased Chief Solomon’s compensation.”
Current Methuen Mayor Neil Perry received the report Wednesday afternoon. He said Solomon and Gallant were placed on leave to give the city an opportunity to review the report.
“As this is a personnel matter, there is much we cannot discuss at this time,” Mayor Perry said. “This matter will be handled with all appropriate due diligence, transparency and professionalism.
Executive Captain Kristopher McCarthy has been named Acting Chief of Police and Lieutenant Randy Haggar has been named Captain of Field Operations.