Chicago Police Superintendent Jody Weis says he is “extremely nervous” about the potential for a mass retirement of police officers next year from the already understaffed department, the Chicago Tribune reports. Though fewer than 100 officers have signed up to accept a new early retirement program, roughly 1,000 officers will be eligible for standard retirement next year, Deputy Superintendent Ted O’Keefe told the City Council.
The police department expects to be down 800 officers by the end of the year. Weis said there were “hundreds of people in the pipeline” to replace retiring officers, but there is a lag of about six months after a new recruit is hired before the officer graduates from the police academy and begins street patrol. Meanwhile, Weis is trying to finalize plans for a roughly $150,000 contract with private consultant The PAR Group to come up with ways to realign police patrol beats across the city.