Police commissioner gets council nod

The Kaua‘i County Council unanimously approved Mayor Bryan Baptiste’s appointment to the Police Commission, Charles S. Fulks, Jr., Wednesday morning.

Fulks will replace Mike

Ching, who resigned on March 23 in the midst of controversy involving the council’s appointment of Police Chief K.C. Lum, and subsequent efforts to cancel Lum’s contract

“It was a difficult decision to (accept the appointment), and I think when we can get past this controversy the better it will be for all of us,” Fulks said.

Counselor Shaylene Iseri-Carvalho expressed appreciation for Fulks serving on a commission that has been highly publicized lately.

Other counselors echoed her sentiments, as did the lone member of the public who spoke on the resolution.

“Anyone willing to jump into this frying pan has to be extremely dedicated,” said Glenn Mickens.

Mickens implored the commission and the mayor to fill positions on the Salary Commission and the Cost Control Commission, which he said have been open for four and two years, respectively.

“It’s a constant effort to keep these positions filled,” said councilwoman JoAnn Yukimura.

“It’s increasingly difficult to find citizens to serve on boards and commissions,” said Mary Daubert of the mayor’s office.

“The mayor does not know Charles personally,” she said. “But we felt he would be a really good addition to the commission with his background.”

Fulks has been with the Kaua‘i Department of Education since 1991, and Daubert said he has been a counselor for 15 years.

Fulks said he was vice principal of Kaua‘i High School, as well as summer school director at Kalaheo Elementary for one summer. He has served on the Association Policy Committee, and still sits on the School Community Council, an elected position representing the faculty.

“I just want to work with the commissioners as a team and look at the information presented,” Fulks said. “I haven’t made any judgments at this point.”

The council voted 5-0 to approve Fulks’s appointment. Councilmen Daryl Kaneshiro and Mel Rapozo were attending a conference on the Mainland.

Fulks had not received official confirmation at the time of this interview, and the mayor’s office could not confirm the date of the swearing in until the County Council had finished for the day. The Police Commission next meets on May 26.

• Ford Gunter, staff writer, may be reached at fgunter@kauaipubco.com, or 245-3681 (ext. 251).

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