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Hiring bonuses for new Seattle police get the thumbs up from safety committee

A final bill that would allow the city to offer hiring bonuses of up to $15,000 to experienced officers could be presented in March.
A Seattle police guards the downtown Seattle crime scene on April 20, 2017. (Photo: Taylor Mirfendereski | KING 5)

Seattle officials will consider a measure that offers hiring bonuses of up to $15,000 to experienced officers who join the city's police department.

The Seattle Times reports the city council's public-safety committee advanced Wednesday the proposal that would also offer hiring bonuses of up to $7,500 to new recruits.

Committee chair M. Lorena Gonzalez says she hopes to present a final bill to the full council Monday but no later than March 11.

The council usually adopts committee recommendations.

Mayor Jenny Durkan proposed the measure last month, saying the city needs to jump into the competition for experienced police officers.

Police Chief Carmen Best says bonuses will help attract top candidates.

According to city figures, the police department has funding for 1,467 full-time positions, but it has 1,398 officers.

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