The SF Board of Supervisors approved a nearly 11% salary increase for SFPD officers over the next three years, which will hopefully do something to encourage new officers to join the department, and encourage existing officers to solve more crimes.
The City and County of San Francisco is looking at deficit times again, with a $780 million deficit over the next two years. Mayor London Breed is demanding across-the-board budget cuts in every city department. But you wouldn’t know that from looking at the San Francisco Police Department budget. On the heels the SF Board of Supervisors approving SFPD's $25 million in extra overtime just last month, at this Tuesday's meeting, NBC Bay Area reports the supervisors approved a substantial pay raise for SFPD.
NBC Bay Area describes this as a “nearly 11% increase in salary over a three-year span for new officers.” (That number is actually 10.75%, per the Chronicle.) NBC Bay Area adds that “SFPD said it’s the highest entry-level salary package in the region with the annual starting salary at $103,000.”
“We need to do whatever we can to attract new people to come to San Francisco and be a police officer here,” Supervisor Joel Engardio said before the board vote. “Residents in my neighborhood are always asking for more police officers.”
The Chronicle pegs the overall cost of this raise at $166.5 million. The paper also notes that City Hall’s HR director Carol Isen told the board previously this month that San Francisco needs to “reestablish ourselves as a highly desired employer amid local law enforcement,” and that “To have officers who want to stay here with the inherent risks and challenges to be a police officer in San Francisco, it was our view that money is important.”
Yet this is the same force nagged by recurring “Police did nothing” stories in the last couple of years, and a Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice report from last year found that “The SFPD has the lowest rate of reported offenses solved by an arrest (8.8%) compared to other major city departments” in California. Supervisor Dean Preston, the only board member who voted against the raise, argued that the city was throwing “unlimited amounts of money” at the police department, adding, “It’s a massive gamble to the tune of $166 million over three years based on little more than speculation.”
Image: @SFPD via Twitter