ABILENE, Texas - As the Abilene Police Department continue to see an increase in crime, changes have been made to the current work shifts, after they were approved by City Council Thursday.
Chief Stan Standridge said they looked at three issues the department wanted to fix.
"Try to reduce overtime spent in the patrol division, try to increase the coverage on the streets by maximizing when and how many officers are on the street at any given time and then, thirdly, honor a true 8-hour work day," said Standridge.
The new shifts will begin September 21. The scheduling for officers will allow supervisors to schedule them 80 hours for a two week period, as opposed to having to always fit 40 hours into each seven day period. Patrol officers who work the first part of the week will work 10-hour days Sunday through Thursday. They will alternate Wednesdays between a 12-hour day the first week and an eight-hour training day the second week.
Patrol officers who work the second half of the week will work 12-hour days Thursday through Saturday. They will alternate Wednesdays between a day off the first week and an 8-hour training day the second week.
"By having officers work 12-hour shifts on our busiest days, we maximize the number of officers that are on the streets during our peak call hours," said Standridge.
Standridge says there is some incentive for those who work those longer 12-hour days.
"The incentive to going to the other end of the week and working 12-hour shifts is they get an additional 26 days off per year," said Standridge.
The shift changes were made through a Meet and Confer Agreement between the city and APD. City Council approved it today along with a 3% pay raise effective January 1, 2015 and an hourly rate increase for training officers. But, both of those raises are pending the approval of the budget.