Capitol Police getting paid with increased demand
According to an article in Politico, the 1800 member United States Capitol Police Department is overwrought with officers who, because of an increase in a demand for their services, are reaping large salary increases due to lucrative overtime.
…”the department used nearly 490,000 hours, or $25.5 million, in overtime for fiscal 2009 alone. It estimates it will need a minimum of 525,060 hours and $27.8 million in the coming fiscal year to cover the Hill’s basic security needs.”….Despite criticism from members of Congress and the pleas from the police chief, the officers themselves seem to enjoy the extra money. In interviews with POLITICO, officers said they often can trade scheduled overtime with colleagues, and the extra income allows some to upgrade their homes, take vacations and save for retirement.
…“Should they hire more officers? It’s more expensive for them to do that. By the time you train an officer and pay them benefits, it’s cheaper to pay me, a veteran, to work for time and a half, where nothing will go into my benefits,” one police officer said.
“I really don’t see what the big deal is,” said another officer. “We rarely have to work mandatory overtime. The people that make a ton of overtime are the people who really want it.”
…”We are at the point where we cannot assume additional mission load without additional sworn personnel and will have to curtail certain training for officers to meet our expected core mission requirements and continue to stay within our allotted overtime budget for fiscal 2011.”