City of San Diego reaches deal to retain police officers

Posted at 8:37 AM, Oct 18, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-18 22:00:29-04

SAN DIEGO (CNS) - Details on the contract agreement designed to stem the flow of experienced officers from the San Diego Police Department to other law enforcement agencies are expected to be released this morning.

The agreement between the San Diego Police Officers Association, the union representing the department's officers, and the city, was announced Tuesday night by Mayor Kevin Faulconer.

"The unfortunate reality is we've been towards the bottom, if not the very bottom in comparison to other departments both here in the county and across the state," said Faulconer. "We've been losing great officers to that. We've had to change that."  

Officers have been leaving the department at a rate of 12 or 13 a month for several years, some simply retiring but many seeking better take home pay in neighboring cities or with the Sheriff's Department. A highly touted five-year deal with the SDPOA two years failed to change matters.

"This landmark investment into our police force will help ensure San Diego stays one of the safest big cities in America for decades to come," Faulconer said.

"This is a fair agreement that makes San Diego officers' salaries highly competitive and encourages veteran officers to stay and grow within SDPD. San Diego has the best police department in the nation, and now every current officer and prospective recruit has great new reasons to choose SDPD."

SDPOA President Brian Marvel said the deal will help recruit new officers and bring in experienced personnel from competing agencies.

"By employing a new strategy with regard to SDPD recruitment and retention, one based on competitive compensation, the city is sending the right message to our experienced officers, catching the eye of the quality laterals and recruits we want to attract, and giving taxpayers more value for their tax dollars,' Marvel said.

Money from the city's general fund would be used to fund the increases. The deal will need to be ratified by the SDPOA membership and approved by the City Council before it takes effect.