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Santa Fe Police Chief Finalists Answer Questions From Public

The final two candidates to become Santa Fe’s next police chief answered questions from the public Thursday night.

Interim Santa Fe Police Chief Paul Joye and Rio Rancho Deputy Chief Andrew Rodriguez separately answered a series of eight questions that were generated from a community survey of local residents.

The questions ranged from relations with the District Attorney’s office, community policing and how to handle a protest that turns violent.

Rodriguez focused on his desire to expand the number of officers and wanting to improve the morale among the force, which he said would improve relations with the community.

“We’re going to attract people. We’re going to have a more positive upward trend of morale within the organization and that’s what I would like to do,” he said.      

Joye pointed to his many years with the Santa Fe Police Department and his experience in knowing what works and what doesn’t to benefit the force and the community.  

“I am optimistic and hopeful about the things that we can do and how we move this place forward together to make this department the best version of itself that the community wants us to be and needs us to be,” he said.

City Manager John Blair has previously said he expects to name a new police chief by the end of the month.     

Kevin Meerschaert comes to Santa Fe from Jacksonville, Florida where he spent the past 20 years covering politics, government and pretty much everything else.