A $10,000 pay hike for NYPD rookies will surely improve future recruitment but it comes too late to prevent the department from shrinking, reports the New York Daily News. Unable to fill the vacancies it had with its lowball salaries, the NYPD’s total headcount for July 1 will be 1,000 fewer cops. The NYPD eliminated the vacant jobs to meet City Hall’s budget demands for the coming fiscal year.
The department had been unable to find enough recruits to reach its authorized headcount of 37,838 uniformed officers. Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said much of the recruiting problem stemmed from the old starting salary of $25,100 for rookies’ first six months on the job. With the salary bump, the city might have had better luck filling its recruit classes. The new contract, settled by a three-member arbitration panel Monday, raised the starting salary to $35,881, and the top base pay to $65,382.