Minneapolis Police Chief Tim Dolan says his department is ready to rehire nine officers who were laid off shortly after they graduated from the academy in 2009.
The department can afford to rehire the officers because of recent positive budget developments, Dolan said. The department is under budget this year and can carry some of the savings forward to 2012. Dolan says the department will also exceed its attrition goals. The retirement of more experienced, higher paid officers is making room on the payroll for new hires.
One of the nine rehires is serving in Iraq and will not be able to come back immediately, and another may not return after finding employment elsewhere, Dolan said. Most of the returning officers are people of color -- including two Hmong officers and one who is Somali.
The officers will return in January and, after some refresher training, should be back patrolling the streets shortly thereafter.
If all nine officers accept the city's offer, that will mark the return of all 25 officers laid off at the end of 2009. The latest rehires are part of a 20-person recruiting class that graduated in December of 2009.
Shortly after graduating, they were sent lay-off notices because the city was unable to pay their salaries. However, a few weeks later the city received federal grant money allowing it to rehire 13. Two more officers were hired back using money from another city department. And another officer was rehired earlier this year.