The mayor, who is also the police commissioner, said the Portland Police Bureau needs about 300 more police officers to meet the city’s policing needs. He wants to hire the officers over the next three years, but he said the city can’t wait that long.
“So, in the immediate term with this Fall BMP process, I’m going to ask my colleagues to support what’s called a retire-rehire program, where we can go out and entice recent retirees to come back and work for us immediately,” Wheeler said.
The mayor said there are around 100 to 120 retirees who are eligible, and he said he believes that several dozen will be willing to come back to the job.
“They don’t have to go back through the lengthy certification process. They can actually hit the streets relatively quickly,” Wheeler said.
The city is experiencing record-high gun violence, there have been more than 1,000 shootings in the city. Police say the violence is putting a strain on resources.
“We’re also working hard at building the Focused Intervention Team, which has a goal to deescalate and lower the tensions in the community that are feeding the contagious gun violence crisis. I’m looking forward to making more announcements about that soon. 3/4.” Says chief Chuck Lovell.