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Mayor Charlie Hales

City of Portland Mayor Charlie Hales

Phone: 503-823-4120

1221 SW 4th Avenue, Room 340, Portland, OR 97204

Mayor Proposes Hiring Incentives for Portland Police Bureau

Join the forceMONDAY, JAN. 4, 2016 — Local media cover Mayor Charlie Hales' proposed hiring incentives for Portland Police Bureau. He is working with the Portland Police Association union to fill the 40 vacant positions already budgeted, and to fill positions that will become vacated by retirements soon. The mayor's goal is to hire a diverse workforce to better reflect the increasingly diverse city they'll serve.

"We've got this fairly entrenched problem. We're behind in recruitment,'' Mayor Hales said. "If we're going to recruit, we're going to have to be more competitive than we are today.''

The mayor's proposals include:

  • Raising entry-level officer salaries from $49,000 to $60,000. Currently, the salaries increase to $60,000 after six months on the job. (Seattle police department's starting pay is about $69,000)
  • Offering a signing bonus to recruits of between $7,500 and $10,000. (Eugene police offer $7,500 signing bonus)
  • Rewarding officers who successfully recruit new officers by paying them "a couple of thousand dollars,'' the mayor suggests.
  • Rehiring retired officers for six months to a year or more. Since most of the soon-to-be retired officers receive disability and pension benefits under Portland's unique public safety fund, they would receive a salary for returning to the job without accruing additional pension benefits.