Aug 7, 2014 7:51 PM by Joe Moeller
Paradise Police have had a difficult time filling the departments several openings. The town manager hopes small incentives will fill vacancies and help keep the town safe.
The Paradise Police Department currently has five officer positions open.
One Paradise store owner tells us the need for more officers in her town is there.
"Often I see something going on and there is no one patrolling when we need them, there is just not enough." Says Mary Nieland, a lifetime resident of Paradise. "It would be nice to have a few more officers here."
She says she has noticed the increase in crime over the years.
"Breaking and entering, we see a lot of questionable people come in the antique store trying to sell items that we question where they have got them from."
The city also knows they need to get more officers on the streets.
"Currently we have our officers doing overtime, and they can do that for a short period of time." Says Town Manager Lauren Gill.
She says the openings have been empty for too long.
"These are not new positions, they are not frozen positions, they are actually unfilled positions."
Finding officers to fill the spots has been rough.
"The Town of Paradise our salaries are not as high, we cannot compete with salaries." Says Gill.
She tells us the city has a proposal to attract officers to paradise.
"What we need to do is offer some one time small incentives to make the town of paradise as an organization more attractive to applicants."
Gill believes these public safety recruitment incentives will fill the openings and save the town money.
"One of the incentives is relocation, a sign-on bonus, again it is a lot cheaper to offer these one-time small pay offerings or incentives than it is to pay for overtime or training."
She believes this is important for the people of paradise.
"We need to fill some vacancies so that the community is safe."
The Town Council is expected to make a decision on the incentives at the August 12th town meeting.
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