(Editor's note: The following is a press release from the city of Akron.)
The City of Akron will be administering police and fire examinations with the intent to hire approximately 40 new police officers and approximately 38 new firefighters.
The City recently received a $1.5 million COPS grant from a new federal program developed to promote the hiring of recent U.S. military veterans. This COPS grant is for the purpose of hiring of 12 veterans, over and above Akron's budgeted strength of 447. Veteran officers hired with COPS funds must have served at least 180 days of active military service, any part of which occurred on or after Sept. 11, 2001.
The last police entrance examination was given in 2008, with 17 new officers hired this year from that test. Four more officers will be taking the oath of office in the next two weeks.
"The COPS grant provides the impetus to move our police force to budgeted strength and beyond," said Mayor Plusquellic. "These jobs are tough and dangerous, but also incredibly rewarding and I am encouraging those eligible to apply for these important positions."
Among the qualifications candidates must meet:
- 21-31 years old for police; 18-31 years old for fire
- Accredited high school or vocational school graduation or equivalent
- Physical and medical standards
- Valid Ohio driver's license
The City previously received a $6.5 million 2011 SAFER grant, which provided for the retention of the 36 firefighters (remaining of the original 38) who were laid off because of the national economic downturn in 2009 and then brought back with a 2009 SAFER award. SAFER grants are designed to provide funding directly to fire departments to help them increase the number of trained, "front line" firefighters available in their communities. The City has also applied for additional SAFER funding to hire 38 new firefighters. This could bring Akron's force up to 363.
Candidates for each must also pass a written test, physical skills test, medical and psychological tests, background investigation and a polygraph examination.
The City of Akron also awards bonus points for those recruits who meet a residency requirement (up to 20 percent), and who served in the armed forces of the United States and were honorably discharged (up to 20 percent). Other preference points are also available for college credit and firefighter certifications, but cannot exceed the maximum 40 percent.
The City's generous benefits package offers comprehensive medical insurance, life insurance at no cost, paid vacation time, sick leave and 14 paid holidays.
"Our citizens have made an exceptionally generous commitment to protect not only those who protect us, but their families as well, by providing a wide range of valuable benefits," noted Mayor Plusquellic. "I encourage our residents who meet the qualifications to take the test so that they may join our highly regarded Fire Department and enjoy a rewarding career."
Men and women interested in applying to take the police examination should call 330-375- 2720 for more information.