Georgia State Patrol holds recruiting event in Hinesville - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Georgia State Patrol holds recruiting event in Hinesville

(Source: WTOC) (Source: WTOC)

Georgia State Patrol is looking to hire troopers and right now they are hosting a recruiting event in Hinesville.

Post 11 is holding the open house for anyone interested in a job. Each troop is hosting these recruiting events.

This one in Hinesville at Post 11 started around 3 p.m. What's happening here goes back to efforts of Governor Nathan Deal to pay law enforcement officers more money and GSP launching their recruiting unit.

The state law enforcement agency is significantly understaffed. Georgia State Patrol is understaffed by about 200 people. 

Troopers from all over our area are here to answer questions on how to join the Georgia State Patrol force. Back in September of 2016 Governor deal announced a 20 percent pay raise for state level law enforcement. The pay raise was created for the purpose of rewarding law enforcement and also an attempt to retain those troopers hired.

"I chose to come out today because I have always wanted to be a state trooper myself, they have always set the standard and protected the people of Georgia and that is what I want to do, protect the people," said Javier Vazquez, Georgia State Patrol Trooper applicant.

We are told turnover rate decreased from 12.3 percent in 2016 to just 5.3 percent in this most recent fiscal year. The additional money for troopers increased Georgia State Patrol to the top 3 state law enforcement agencies in the Southeast in terms of compensation.

Everyone here is very appreciative of the work of the governor and general assembly.

"On January 1st of this year we received that 20 percent pay increase, which we are very thankful for and excited about," said TFC2 Hawk Parrish, Georgia State Patrol. "That has also increased out applicants with GSP."

There have been 828 roadway fatalities so far in 2017. At this same time in 2016 there were 830 roadway fatalities. In 2016, there were 1561 roadway fatalities total. So far in 2017, 41 percent of roadway fatalities happened when the occupant was not wearing a seatbelt.

Right now GSP is in week 11 of recruiting, prior to the changes in pay and the launching of the GSP recruiting unit they received 504 applications at week 11. But right now the progress report for week 11 looks much different, after all the work to reward and retain law enforcement GSP has received 1,356 applications. That's about 850 more applications.

We asked about how much a starting Georgia State Patrol trooper makes.

"Here in trooper school you are paid for trooper school," said TFC2 Parrish. "You get an annual salary of $36,110. After trooper school you automatically get a pay raise which is $46,422."

For more information on applying to be a Georgia State Patrol trooper click here.

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