October 21, 2021

Tobin picks Sandy as next police chief

Nomination to go to Cortland Common Council

Cortland Mayor Brian Tobin announced Tuesday night that he will nominate Deputy Police Chief Paul Sandy as the city’s next police chief.

Sandy was one of two finalists, along with Lt. David Guerrera, to succeed Chief F. Michael Catalano, who retires March 19 after 12 years as chief.

“It was a difficult choice between two outstanding candidates,” Tobin said in a news release. “I am pleased to announce that I will forward the name of Paul Sandy to the city of Cortland Common Council to be the next police chief for the city of Cortland. Paul is currently the deputy chief, and has worked tirelessly to improve his own performance, and to lead those around him to do the same. He understands the challenges that our officers, community members, and the city as a whole face. I am confident that the department will continue to adapt to the community’s needs under his guidance.”

“I have confidence in all of my staff and the institutional knowledge of their combined years will keep the police department the professional, well respected agency that it is.” Catalano said in the release.

Tobin plans to bring his recommendation to the city’s Common Council for approval March 16.

The city opened the search to candidates from across the state. Finalists were interviewed initially by the city police commission, which consists of three community members, appointed by the mayor.

Candidates then fielded questions from the mayor with a dozen community community members via Zoom.

Sandy and Guerrera were interviewed Friday by Tobin and others. The videos are available on YouTube:

“With the focus on law enforcement this past year and legitimate concerns about events in other communities, I wanted to have a process that allowed everyone the opportunity to hear from the candidates to understand what their vision for the department would entail”, Tobin said. “For us to move forward in a positive manner, we need to continue to build confidence and trust in not only law enforcement, but also government.”