The Vancouver Police Department is using money from a U.S. Justice Department grant to fill 10 vacant officer positions.
Two meetings have been set up to provide candidates with little or no experience testing for police jobs with information about the process, Vancouver police announced Thursday.
The city was originally awarded the Community Oriented Policing Services grant to hire 10 new officers, but as the city’s budget deficit grew, police administration worked with the Justice Department to change the grant to allow Vancouver to retain officers. That modification was announced in late July 2010, and the city council unanimously approved the grant in August.
The award can also be used to fill positions opened through retirements and other attrition, said Kim Kapp, a police spokeswoman.
“There are always vacancies,” Kapp said.
The COPS grant will pay entry-level salaries for 10 officers for three years; the city must cover step wage increases, according to the grant agreement. The entry-level salary is $4,644 to $6,223 per month, depending on education and other factors.
“The Vancouver Police Department is currently accepting entry-level police officer applications,” according to http://www.vanpolice.org. “All entry-level applicants must apply by registering through http://www.publicsafetytesting.com.”
The grant also stipulates that Vancouver retain the 10 positions for a year after the grant expires or return the full grant amount — $2.58 million — to the federal government.
Testing will be conducted by Public Safety Testing, which handles recruitment and testing for law enforcement agencies. Dates and locations are available on the Public Safety Testing website.
The information sessions are scheduled for 7 p.m. May 20 and June 17 at the Water Resource Education Center, 4600 Columbia Way.
For more information, call the police department’s backgrounds unit or a recruiter: Sgt. Deborah Libbey, 360-487-7465; Sgt. Greg Raquer, 360-487-7454; Detective Richard Rich, 360-487-7481; Sgt. Troy Price, 360-487-7463.