KAPLAN, La. (KLFY) More money could be in the pockets of Kaplan police officers as the Chief Joshua Hardy is looking to add $5,000 to their annual salary.
“I felt it was necessary to give those officers a bump in salary as appreciation of them coming to work every day and working extra when we need and when we’re short until everybody can do their job.” said Chief Hardy. “It’s not much but something is better than nothing.”
In 2018 when Hardy first took office he said there were four police officers working. Over the years they have been able to become fully staffed but the main challenge he has seen is officers leaving his department for more pay. He said some positions were never filled therefore he thought to take two positions not filled and split the money between the officers that stay there “for the long run.”
“The positions that were cut were those salaries from those two positions and the money that we had in the budget will be added together totaling $63,700,” said the chief. “That will be divided between all of the patrols, the patrol will get a $5,000 bump in their annual salary, and admin. as in my two captains, the secretary, and the clerk get $21.75.”
He said he is thankful for his team’s dedication and knows they will appreciate any increased pay they can receive.
“There’s not much that we can offer because we’re a small municipality. We don’t have a lot of revenue so any little bit that they can get they would appreciate.” He adds, “my staff is very dedicated. They come to work, they do their job, and they like to come out extra just to help out a lot of them. When they come out extra they don’t want to come out for overtime or pay time they come to do it for free,” he said. “No matter what I ask of them they will do it. They will come to work. They will help the public and that’s what I love most about my job is that I have a good force and good officers that will come and do their job and protect and serve the people of Kaplan.”
Chief said with everything going on in the world today being a police officer is demanding.
In addition to a police shortage that is many departments nationwide and right here in Acadiana he is looking to compact it by requesting from the city council to get the pay raise for his workers.
“The council tabled it because they wanted to speak to the civil service attorney to make sure that it was legal; the actions we were taking,” he said. “We’re just waiting on answers from the civil service attorney to take the next step as to getting the officers the money come July 1.”
The police department is hiring. If you would like to join the police department force you can pick up an application at the station.