Herbold on police hiring incentives

After the Council approved CB 120389, Councilmember Lisa Herbold (District 1, West Seattle) issued the following statement:

Police officer attrition is a problem in cities around the nation, according to Councilmember Herbold.

“These recruiting incentives will enable SPD to compete for highly skilled officers and meet our hiring objectives using money currently available in its budget. Obviously, this won’t be sufficient on its own.

Creating innovative, more efficient methods of responding to situations that do not necessitate an armed police response must be our top goal moving ahead.

When we don’t have enough cops to investigate sexual assaults or react to 911 calls, we can’t keep expecting them to control traffic and assist individuals in mental health crises.

First responders have challenging jobs. We shouldn’t make it too challenging.


The Seattle City Council authorised $1.15 million from existing monies in SPD’s 2022 budget for police recruiting in a resolution that was sponsored by Councilmember Herbold and approved in May.

The law passed today permits the expenditure of an extra $289,000 in employment incentives from already allocated monies in SPD’s 2022 budget.

Upon completion of the one-year probationary term, the second half of the bonus would be paid. Officers would have to refund the incentive if they left the department within five years.

One in five candidates listed the bonus as one of their reasons for applying to the SPD, according to the findings of the partial research from the 2019 incentive programme.

When the Public Safety Civil Service Commission’s best prediction is that we will recruit one police officer for every 12 applications in 2021, 20% more candidates are significant.

Additionally, the measure transfers $228,000 from SPD to the Seattle Department of Human Resources for four jobs in order to improve hiring, conduct testing, and expedite the recruitment process.

In accordance with past legislation from the Council, it permits financing for relocating costs.

I appreciate working on the measure with the Council, SPD, and Mayor’s Office.

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