May 14, 2011 11:15 PM by John Romero
2010 was a tough year for the Colorado Springs Police Department. City wide budget cuts forced the loss of about 40 officers. That also meant no money for an academy. "We've been coming up out of a recession." explains Sgt. David Edmondson with CSPD, "We had a lean 2010 as far as personnel is concerned through not only having an academy, but with our attrition rate so high."
Departments scrambled to keep up with an ever growing amount of service calls. "Our calls for service increase. However our services to those calls are not prioritized around priorities 1 and 2. That's strictly due to the limited man power that we have on the street." says Edmondson, "Our staffing is just really low."
But now for the first time in nearly two years a new crop of recruits are seeing if they have what it takes to be on the force. "Our academy is very academically intensive. We have a 26 week academy." says Edmondson.
At the end of the academy 28 new CSPD officers will be welcomed on to the force. That likely means there will be 7 new officers added per patrol division. Something Edmondson says is far overdue for a city the size of Colorado Springs. "Right now we're at 1.3 per 1000 in our officer rating which is pretty low for a city our size." he explains, "This is a crucial amount of folks going back out on the street to help support patrol and the community."
The new officers should all be out on the streets for field training by the end of September.