Rosen-Backed Bipartisan Legislation Would Help Tackle Police Officer Shortage In Nevada & Nationwide
WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen (D-NV) joined her colleagues in co-sponsoring the bipartisan Recruit and Retain Act, which would support law enforcement agencies’ efforts to hire and retain more police officers. It would establish a federal pipeline program to support increased collaboration between local departments and schools to help facilitate recruitment activities and encourage more young people to enter law enforcement careers. This bipartisan legislation would also expand the existing COPS Hiring Program to help defray local police departments’ recruiting and onboarding costs.
“Law enforcement agencies in Nevada and across our country are facing dire shortages of police officers at a time when communities are experiencing a rise in crime,” said Senator Rosen. “I’ll always stand up for public safety, and I’m proud to support this bipartisan legislation to increase funding for law enforcement to help recruit, hire, and retain more police officers. Our police departments deserve to have all of the resources they need to do their jobs effectively and keep our communities safe.”
“Policing has changed through the years and the way we recruit, hire, and treat our officers must change, too. Senator Rosen understands these changes require forward thinking and additional funding,” said Sheriff Kevin McMahill, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD) Sheriff. “In order to hire officers that reflect our community, we must help them overcome barriers in the recruitment process, and some of those can be financial. Making sure our LVMPD employees accurately reflect the diversity of the community we serve is one of our top priorities.”
“The Washoe County Sheriff’s Office currently partners with schools throughout the County to enhance relationships and build recruitment pipelines, among other outreach,” said Sheriff Darin Balaam, Washoe County Sheriff. “We are encouraged by Senator Rosen’s proposed legislation which would not only help us expand school outreach, but also help us reach new individuals who may be interested in pursuing a career in law enforcement but face barriers to entry.”
“Diversified recruiting coupled with the retention of our officers is a high priority for the Reno Police Department,” said Chief Kathryn Nance, Reno Police Department Chief. “Increasing funding sources for recruitment and programs such as this will assist with our recruiting efforts.”
“I am hopeful that this bill will help with recruiting strategies, allowing small rural law enforcement agencies to compete with larger jurisdictions when it comes to recruiting and retention of officers,” said Sheriff Mike Cullen, Storey County Sheriff.
Senator Rosen has consistently supported Nevada’s law enforcement community to ensure they are well-resourced and that communities are kept safe from crime. As part of the government funding legislation last year, Senator Rosen secured millions in funding for police departments across Nevada. Earlier this year, Senator Rosen also announced federal funding opportunities for local police departments to hire more officers and incentivize community policing efforts. This year, Senator Rosen also invited Las Vegas Metro Police Department Officer Laura Villicana as her guest to the State of the Union Address to highlight local efforts in Nevada to increase trust between local law enforcement and the Las Vegas community.