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Contract negotiation underway for Fort Myers Police Chief

Posted at 11:58 PM, Jul 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-29 23:58:24-04

FORT MYERS, Fla. — A new contract is on the table for Fort Myers Police Chief Derrick Diggs.

The chief’s current contract is set to expire August 16. There are new details as to what it will mean for the city to keep their current Chief of Police.

“He came in at a time when there was, for lack of a better word, turmoil within the agency.”

It’s been about a month of negotiating and the city is ready to offer Police Chief Derrick Diggs a new contract. The contract extension is for two years, seeing Diggs as Chief of Police through August 2023. Initially, Chief Diggs was hired as Chief of Police in August 2016 with an initial term of three years. In August 2019, the city council approved a two-year extension with a provision for a two-year renewal term.

“He worked very hard to reorganize, revamp and drive the crime down," said Kevin Anderson, Mayor of the City of Fort Myers. "We’ve seen a significant reduction in violent crimes, especially violent crime, in the city.”

Diggs was recently considered a finalist in the running as police chief in Columbus, Ohio- but was ultimately not hired. The only changes in this new contract are the effective dates of the agreement- which run from August 16, 2021 through August 16, 2023. Mayor Anderson says being able to keep Diggs is pivotal for the city.

“The reality of it is when you hire someone, until you put them to work and you actually get to watch them perform, you really don’t know what you have." said Anderson. "Well, he’s proven- we know what we have.”

Also detailed within the contract- the chief will not be receiving a salary increase. Instead, after 12 months, the city manager can reevaluate Diggs’ salary. And at least once a year, Diggs and the city manager will meet to review goals for the police department.

“I hope he’s going to keep the department moving forward and keep driving the crime rate down- I think that’s very important," Anderson said. "We were working on our strategic plan today and the city being safe is a big part of that plan.”

Digg’s contract extension will be up for approval during Monday night’s city council meeting.