New officers at the Bakersfield Police Department will now each receive $3,000 as a hiring incentive.
The Bakersfield City Council unanimously approved the new incentives for police trainees during its meeting last night. The incentives, which go into effect Dec. 1, are for employees who have completed the Bakersfield Police Department academy and have been on the force for up to one year.
Each trainee would get $1,500 upon acceptance of a job offer and the rest at some point during their first year of service. Officers that were hired last year and are still working in the department will each receive $1,500, the city said.
The goal of the incentives is to help BPD reach its goal of hiring 100 new police officers over the next three years through the passage of the Measure N tax measure last year. The city said hiring and retaining officers has been challenging due to higher pay in other areas of the state.
The city said the incentive amount they decided on came after looking at incentives other city police departments have.
For example, the Seattle Police Department provides bonuses of up to $7,500 for new recruits. Some cities, including Seaside and Palo Alto, provide bonuses of up to $30,000 per employee, according to the city.