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Applications open for Fargo police oversight board

Review of applicants will begin Jan. 27, but remain open until all seven positions are filled.

Fargo Police Chief David
Fargo Police Chief David Zibolski speaks to the Fargo City Commission last year.
Forum file photo

FARGO — Applications are open for a position on the first Fargo Police Advisory & Oversight Board.

The start to the new venture was announced at the Fargo City Commission meeting on Monday night, Jan. 10.

Applications or "statements of interest" are available on the city's website and will remain open until a "sufficient number" of applicants are received.

Residents can also submit a written application to the City Commission Office, Fargo City Hall, 225 Fourth Street North, Fargo, ND, 58102, or by calling the office at 701-241-1310.

Police Chief David Zibolski announced the next step in the forming of the panel in a video that's also available on the city website.

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The seven-member board, he said, will help improve community relations and offer more transparency about the department's operations.

He said some of the most important factors to consider are that the candidates are 21 years of age, a resident of the city and must complete a 40-hour training course to learn more about department operations.

To start, the initial board appointments will include four members to serve four-year terms and three members for three-year terms to provide for staggered terms in the future.

Zibolski also said they are looking for diversity for the board, including by ethnicity, race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, disability, socioeconomic status and age. He also mentioned business people.

Only one member of the board may have served in law enforcement, and only after five years have passed since their service.

Felons and those convicted of numerous crimes aren't eligible.

A sampling of questions on the application include:

  • What do you hope to accomplish while serving on the board?
  • Why are you interested in serving?
  • What prior experiences have you had that might pertain to this board?

It's hoped the board can have the first of its monthly meetings in April. The meetings will be open to the public and recorded.
The application review process will begin on Jan. 27 and will remain open until all positions on the board have been filled.

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Finalists must undergo a background check before final approval.

The City Commission will approve the seven board members. Commissioners approved the formation of the board on a 3-2 vote last fall.

Applications are available at FargoND.gov/FPDBoard .

Related Topics: GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS
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