Shippensburg Police Department has hired Tyler Smith as its newest part-time officer. Smith was sworn into office Wednesday by Chief Meredith Dominick and Mayor Kathy Coy.
His first official day was Friday, and Smith will have a starting salary of $18.62 per hour, with no set expiration date on his contract.
Smith also serves as a part-time police officer at the Newville Borough Police Department, where he also works as their code enforcement officer. Previously, he held careers in landscaping, manufacturing and culinary arts. He is Act 120 certified, having graduated from the Municipal Police Academy about a year ago.
“We are very happy to have Tyler be a part of the Shippensburg Police Department family,” said Dominick. “We are very excited to have him serve the citizens of this community.”
Smith came off as “enthusiastic” and “intelligent” during the hiring process, Dominick said. His previous police work in Newville was a “plus” for his candidacy, but wasn't the deciding factor in hiring him. She said he will ultimately need to adapt to the police work of Shippensburg.
“I have already worked with a few Shippensburg officers and have enjoyed working with them,” Smith wrote in an email to The News-Chronicle. “I also look forward to developing positive community relationships as I have established in the Borough of Newville. And mostly just want to continually learn and adapt as every officer must do in today’s environment.”
Dominick now has eight full-time officers and four part-time officers under her direction. Since taking over at the beginning of the year, Dominick has stated her intention of growing the department with the retirement of longtime officers, and others moving onto other employment opportunities. She has the authorization from borough council to hire another full-time officer and is shooting to close out the process by the end of the summer, barring any unforeseen circumstances. The borough anticipates full-time officer’s salary and benefits to cost $95,000 for one year.
Dominick noted following the latest council approval, she would like to hire 2-3 more part-time officers. However, the department will only meet its desired state by bringing aboard more full-time staffing.
“We need more officers to supplement the current complement,” Dominick said.
Part-time staffing is one way in which the department “continues to promote the safety of the residents of the borough.” Borough council supported Dominick's intentions last Tuesday by approving the hiring of Smith.
“We are happy to help the chief in putting more police on the streets with those leaving us through retirement,” said Councilman Mitchell Burrows. “Full-time is better than part-time, but this is good for now.”
Smith noted achieving full-time status is one of his goals.