Annapolis Mayor Alfred A. Hopkins has decided to include a deputy police chief in his proposed 1992 budget.
The announcement came lessthan a week after the police department's Black Officers Associationcalled on Hopkins to hire a black deputy chief and fulfill a promisethe mayor made a year ago at an event attended by 300 people.
Hopkins denied a connection between his decision and the BOA's request.
"I have wanted the deputy chief position for years," Hopkins said. "It's nothing new. Where were all these people when I was fighting for a deputy chief? If anyone wants to take credit for it, I'lllet them."
Hopkins has said he will appoint a minority to the position.One of his top choices for the job has been Capt. Norman Randall, a 28-year veteran who is black, but yesterday the mayor said, "Anybody can apply for the job."
Last week, Hopkins said he wanted thedeputy chief's position but said the city might not be able to afford it this year. He said his priority was hiring seven paramedics for a new ambulance in Eastport.
Hopkins said yesterday the city can'tafford the paramedics. "I really want the paramedics, but these are very trying times," Hopkins said.
Hopkins may present his budget to the City Council as early as next month. Alderman Theresa DeGraff, R-Ward 7, chairwoman of the public safety committee, opposes the deputy chief's position, arguing the money would be better spent for training on all officers.