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by Peter Moskos

December 11, 2009

Balto City and Police reach tentative deal

It includes 5 days of furlough and 2 more days of paid vacation. I would have liked that. I suspect most police do not.

Comp time (at 1.5 : 1) instead of overtime for court? The number of arrests will plummet!

Given that most police want to work more hours, not fewer, and this contract is designed to give police less money, it won't go over well.

One nice change is the "officers will no longer be forced to work six-day weeks." Six on and two off was just about the worst conceivable way to work 40 hours/week. What's the new system?

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

A lot of jobs don't even have overtime. For the most part it is a thing of the past, at least as far as well-paying jobs go. The officers have much to be thankful for.

The comp time should help a lot with the overpolicing problem, like all the fruitless Terry frisks which Baltimore inexplicably fails to track.

PCM said...

Since when did police become "well paying"?

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PCM said...

Anonymous, leave the snide and obnoxious comments to yourself. They're not welcome here. It's not how this works. (And I say this having no idea what "5-inch" means. But even if it is not an obtuse reference to penis size, it still doesn't move the discussion in a direction I like).

And I can't think of anything less persuasive or relevant to police officers today than a 10-year-old press release from the ACLU. Talk about cutting edge research! (Yes, I exempt myself from the snide comment ban.)

Ironically, more recent data makes your case stronger. Sort of. Numbers are one thing, describing a "fruitful" frisk is something else.

I've already written it about here and also on page 30 of my book. Have you bought it?

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PCM said...

You haven't read my book. It's the least you could do. I discuss that matter. So I won't do so here.

In New York state it's unconstitutional to prosecute people for drugs found in a Terry Frisk. I think it's a good decision.

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IrishPirate said...

This is a thread about police pay and it gets hijacked into a discussion of "frisk" policy?

Anyway, a few months back PCM had a post about a Baltimore Police Major. My recollection is that a Baltimore Police Major makes around $85,000 a year. The Chicago Police equivalent makes around $135,000. I looked it up.

Now I don't know what the cost of living is in Baltimore versus Chicago, but that's a large difference.

I generally think the police should be paid a solid middle income salary. That would obviously differ based on location.

Many poorer Chicago suburbs have part time, low paid police departments. The quality of policing suffers because of this. The folks who tend to do the policing in some of those suburbs tend to be people who have always wanted to be cops and for some reason haven't been able to get hired at better paying departments.

If you want quality you have to pay a decent wage.

Policing is not the most physically dangerous job in America, but it certainly can be psychologically damaging. Cops deserve to be decently compensated.

There is also a problem with cops who become burned out on the job sticking around to collect their pensions or become at least pension eligible.

In a larger city like Chicago it would be possible to allow cops to transfer to other city departments and still pay into the police pension system.

For example, you've got a guy who's been a cop in rough districts for 12 years and he's sick of it. Yet, he doesn't want to quit because he needs the income and is not pension eligible.

Let him transfer to some other city position, keep putting money and time into his police pension, and possibly stay in some police "reserve" capacity.

Hell, maybe after driving a truck for a few years or working in some other job he might want to rejoin the department. Maybe not.

In any case I think that would lead to happier cops and better policing.

PCM said...

I like those ideas.

And shockingly on-subject!