Town joins county police recruiting program
A new police recruiting program initiated by the managers and administrators of the six communities in Newport County allows candidates to file one application to work as a police officer in any town in the county.
"The program will save us time and money," said Jamestown Police Chief Thomas Tighe. "Although our requirements are slightly different from the other communities, the physical agility and written tests are the same. We require candidates to have 60 credits of college completed, or two years of military service, or two years as a full-time federal, state, or local law enforcement officer before applying. Other towns have slightly different requirements," he added.
The number of applications had been dwindling for the last few years, Tighe said. By recruiting in a co-operative program, all six towns will have an opportunity to choose from a larger more diverse pool of candidates. "We will also share the recruiting expenses, like advertising costs. Newport, Middletown, Portsmouth, Tiverton, Jamestown, and Little Compton are all participating in the program, he said.
All applicants are required to take a physical agility examination followed by a written test. The physical agility examination requires recruits to perform a series of physical fitness exercises that include running, sit-ups and push-ups, he said. The physical agility portion of the testing process will most likely take place at Rogers High School in Newport. Following the physical agility test, candidates will take a written exam at a location that is yet to be determined. If they pass both the physical and written tests, prospective recruits must then satisfy applications from individual towns with specific requirements, Tighe said. Newport's Human Resources Director Michael J. Corey has been appointed co-ordinator for the Newport County Regional Testing Process.
Except for Providence police officers and State Police, all police officers in the state train at the Rhode Island Municipal Police Training Academy in Lincoln where a 16-week training course is offered three times a year. David P. Faucher, Portsmouth's finance and personnel director said that the program will be advertised in local and regional newspapers as well as in Hispanic and other minority publications.
Although the towns have yet to agree on a uniform set of requirements, Tighe said he feels that working together to recruit officers for the county is the way of the future. "We'll have a bigger and better pool of recruits to choose from, and the process will be much more time and cost efficient for everyone concerned," he noted
Anyone wishing to apply for a position as a police officer in the six communities in Newport County can pick up an application at Newport City Hall or any of the six town halls. The applications must be completed and returned to Michael J. Corey, c/o City Hall, 43 Broadway, Newport, RI, 02840 by Friday, Nov. 17, at 4 p.m.