The finalists are Maj. Tom Arnold, a 31-year Cobb Police Department veteran currently serving as interim police chief; Jeffery Pearce, an assistant special agent in charge at the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; and William Sewell, chief of police for the McMinnville Police Department in McMinnville, Tenn.
Mayor Pat Vaughn referred to all of the finalists as "excellent" and said the city plans to hold a meet-and-greet with them in the next 10 days.
City Manager Rick Eckert will make his recommendation to the city council at its June 20 meeting.
Vaughn said the council hopes to vote on that hire at the June 20 meeting as well.
"Sometimes things might get delayed because we're in the process of checking references and things like that," Vaughn said. "Hopefully we will be announcing on the 20th."
Eckert said if he doesn't make his recommendation by June 20, the council will likely hold a special called meeting to make that announcement and vote on the budget.
Eckert said the city received 31 applications for the position. A group of law enforcement officials, including Kennesaw Police Chief Bill Westenberger, Marietta Police Chief Dan Flynn and Gerald Peal, a retired Cobb County police officer and polygraph professional, narrowed down the list of candidates, Eckert said.
Eckert said they are looking at a salary for the new police chief in the mid-$80,000s, but that it will depend on the candidate's experience and qualifications. The current police chief salary is $75,000.
The new chief will oversee 30 officers and four civilian employees. The department has an operating budget of roughly $3 million.
Former Powder Springs Police Chief L. Rick Richardson was fired for allegedly selling city property without authorization in February.