Three internal candidates and an Omaha Fire Department retiree are on the final list of applicants for Omaha fire chief.
Another 11 external candidates put in their names before the deadline earlier this week.
The city is not releasing names of or information about the candidates until they've completed an initial testing process. But interim Fire Chief Bernard Kanger, who has been serving in the department's top position since August, has said he applied for the job.
Mikki Frost, the city's human resources director, said the retired applicant will be considered for the job but would be required to pay back his or her retirement benefits, plus interest, in order to serve in a full-time role.
A handful of high-ranking fire officials retired this fall, including Fire Chief Mike McDonnell, Assistant Fire Chief Scott Baughman and Battalion Chiefs Michael Beaudin and Scott Muschall.
City human resources officials are now checking to make sure the candidates meet the requirements for the job.
Candidates must now hold a bachelor's degree from a short list of fields and have 15 years of firefighting experience, including at least three years as a battalion chief or higher-ranking administrator. A master's degree or executive fire officer certificate is preferred.
By February, the 15 contenders will be narrowed to a shortlist of four finalists, who will be interviewed by Mayor Jean Stothert.
The city expects to name a new chief in early March.