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Recruiting Challenges Remain For Ky. State Police

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The next class of Kentucky State Police cadets – who start learning the ropes later this month – will be the first to experience the state’s new $4.5 million dollar trooper Training Academy in Frankfort. But as attracting those recruits can also be a challenge.

At the start of this year, the KSP found itself about 100 recruits short of its goal. Asked why, officials point to a number of factors  from retirements to a shrinking pool of qualified candidates. Also, as KSP Commissioner Rodney Brewer says, some of the staffing changes are by design.

"We purposefully kept the class rather small, not only because of our budget - that's certainly a driving force - but also the academy wanted to see the ebb and flow of this first class to see how they move through the new complex and if there's anything we needed to change," he says.

And while Kentucky hasn’t experienced the kind of challenges to law enforcement that we’ve seen in Baltimore, Ferguson, and elsewhere, Brewer suspects the recruiting climate has been affected.

"I think we have seen a touch of that. I think it might have swayed someone who might have been on the bubble anyway not to apply," Brewer says. "But we've not seen that in huge numbers. I think it would be realistic to say over the next several months and even a year or two that's going to affect recruiting in a lot of different agencies across the country."

The next KSP cadet class starts their training on May 24.

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