BART PD reaches hiring milestone

08.28.19

BART PD reaches hiring milestone

The BART Police Department has now hired 40 officers this calendar year.  That’s equal to the total number of officers hired in 2017 and 2018 combined.  The progress in officer hiring comes as the department has been engaged in a far-reaching recruitment campaign, which builds upon a new labor contract that was approved by the BART Board in December.

“Many would-be hires are now taking a second look at BART,” said BART Interim Police Chief Ed Alvarez.  “For the first time in years our hiring pace is ahead of our attrition rate and that’s allowing us to increase the number of boots on the ground in the BART system.” 

The new labor contract brought BPD officer salaries closer to the average for other law enforcement agencies in the Bay Area. The four-year contract included a one-time 6% salary increase as well as annual raises ranging from 2.5-2.75% over the life of the agreement.  BART also offers new officers a $15,000 hiring bonus.

“We have a long way to go to reach full staffing at BPD but we’re confident in the direction our hiring effort is headed,” said Alvarez.  BPD currently has 34 officer vacancies; a number boosted this year when the BART Board approved money to fund 19 additional police officer positions. 

Ensuring the BART Police Department is fully staffed is a priority for new BART General Manager Bob Powers and is part of his plan to put the riders first and improve the customer experience.

An independent review of the BART Police Department performed by the University of North Texas resulted in a recommendation that BPD add 94 patrol officers over five years.  The report also recommended that BPD create a new officer team dedicated to patrolling trains.

In addition to hiring 40 officers, BPD has hired 9 Community Service Officers and 13 Fare Inspection Officers this year.  Non-sworn Community Service and Fare Inspection officers increase the visible presence of BPD in the system.

BPD hired 24 officers in 2018 and 16 in 2017.  Get details on how to apply to become a BPD officer.