LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Right now, the Sierra Madre Police Department is short 9 officers.
Some are calling it a big dent for a city with 11,000 people in it.
“That’s almost half [of the officers], so that’s a bit concerning,” Sierra Madre resident Jennifer Meglemre said.
In response to the short-staffed police department, Sierra Madre council members are asking the Arcadia Police Department to step in and patrol 7 days a week — from sunset until sunrise — until new recruits are hired and trained.
The reason for the shortage, according to Sierra Madre’s police chief: higher pay elsewhere, retirement, and concern over job security.
People who live in Sierra Madre have mixed feelings.
Some worry criminals could move in, while other feel safe, knowing the officers in Arcardia are already helping with patrols, under a “mutual aid agreement” between the two cities.
“I feel safe all the time, I usually run in the morning… I kind of disagree to have to reach out to other cities, but if you do need help, that’s what you need to do,” Sierra Madre resident Sindy Schiller told KCAL9’s Rebecca Ferriter.
If a contract is approved by both city councils, Arcadia officilas will start night time patrols in Sierra Madre starting on February 7th, and if needed, will continue into June.
“I feel like this is a safe community, but it does concern me to think there are 9 openings,” Meglemre said.
According to the city’s website, new officers can earn between $53,000 and $67,000 a year, with a $5,000 signing bonus.