Madison police shifting positions to address patrol officer shortage

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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV)-- The Madison Police Department will be shifting its officers to address patrol staffing shortages in 2020.

Chief Mike Koval states in his blog he is eliminating 12 non-patrol positions and change those positions into patrol officers.

"It is imperative that we adequately staff our patrol function to allow for appropriate police response to emergencies," stated Koval. "These cuts will partially – but not fully – address the staffing deficiency our patrol function is facing."

The changes will reduce the Community Policing Teams, Community Outreach and Resource Education unit, the Gang Unit, and the elimination of two neighborhood officer positions.

Etico Solutions, Inc. was contracted to study patrol staffing for the department. The study's outcome establishes the appropriate level of police staffing for patrols, based on community expectations.

The 2018 analysis found the reactive patrol workload increased by about 11% from 2017 to 2018. Patrol officers re spending more than 40 minutes each hour (on average) on reactive patrol work. A member of the community calling for police assistance has an almost 1/10 chance that MPD patrol officers are able respond to emergency/priority incidents.

The study also found the police department is short of 31 officers for appropriate staffing levels.

To see the full staffing report, click here

In 2017, seven non-patrol positions (the Safety Education unit and the afternoon shift of the Traffic Enforcement Safety Team (TEST)) were eliminated.