BEND, OR -- Bend Police and City Councilors have agreed to a new Collective Bargaining agreement with a new clause. Chief Jim Porter says it includes performance-based bonuses. "One of the complaints we generally have in public service is ‘cops just get rewards for showing up and breathing.’ Well, this time, our Police Association, who was very forward-looking with us, who took a chance on this, has agreed to certain pay increments: 1.5% in the first six months, 2% in the second six months, if they hit certain goals."
Chief Porter says those goals are not related to enforcement action or “quotas.” He tells KBND News, "These goals are tied to livability; they’re tied to public interaction; they’re tied to interaction with our youth. They’re not tied to enforcement action; not tied to tickets; they’re not tied to arrests. They’re tied to such things as making sure we get into all the schools once a day and have lunch with kids; make sure get into senior centers."
Aside from creating a better city, Porter says it’s another way to attract new recruits during the ongoing nationwide officer shortage. "We needed a way to get ourselves into a better market position. We aren’t getting the police officers we need in Bend. We just aren’t. We just went through a hiring process, and out of the hundreds applied, we’ve narrowed it down to 13 who we believe have the right characteristics to be a successful police officer in the city of Bend; because Bend asks for different characteristics than a lot of cities."
The deal was approved by City Council, last week. While annual cost of living increases remain, Chief Porter says the bonuses do away with pay raises for simply being with the department for a certain length of time.
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