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The Colorado State Patrol (CSP) is currently NOT the employer of choice for those seeking a career in professional communications services.

CSP Communications Officer wages are significantly below and not competitive with other adjacent public safety communications agencies.  Currently, the negative synergistic effect of increased call volumes, inadequate Full Time Employees (FTE), and non-competitive wages have resulted in lower staffing levels – which has generated mandatory overtime, lower morale, higher turnover, and greater errors.

CSP Communications requires a competitive wage to attract, recruit, hire, and retain the communications dispatch workforce.  This request will increase salaries for 133 FTE (Full Time Employees) within the CSP’s Communications Branch.  The salary increase will align State Patrol Dispatchers with comparable positions statewide.  The salary increase will also allow the CSP to recruit and retain a professional communications workforce that can effectively deliver emergency dispatch services, which is foundational to ensure public safety. 

Should this request not be approved, the Department expects to continue experiencing difficulties in recruitment and retention within the CSP Communications Officer job classifications.  The Department has significant turnover within these classifications that have gone unaddressed by other hiring efforts.  The vacancies, the State’s low unemployment rate, and the current employment market have been determined to place the CSP in a staffing crisis that cannot be overcome without the approval of this request.

Over the past few years, with the increase in law enforcement transparency and while under extreme public scrutiny, the Colorado State Patrol (CSP) has been inundated with requests for records and case files from the public, district attorney (DA) offices, and other legal representation. In response, the CSP has centralized previously decentralized units to increase efficiency and effectiveness to respond for demands for service. Due to the shortage of professional administrative staff (non-uniformed), the CSP is struggling to keep pace with the volume of administrative demands. This negatively impacts customer service and relationships with other law enforcement partners and stakeholders.

Due to the volume of administrative work, troopers and supervisors have once again been assigned to administrative tasks that can easily be completed by a non-uniformed member. It is imperative the CSP keeps up with the growing demand for services and transparency. With additional non-uniformed staff, the Patrol will be able to free up time for troopers and supervisors to return to their primary job duties in the field.

The request will enable the necessary replacements and maintenance of required public safety communications equipment to include handheld portable radios, special purpose handheld portable radios for hazardous materials environments, mobile radios for vehicles and aircraft, service (wireless networks and GPS service), and ancillary equipment to accommodate video upload and connectivity.  Approval of the funding will allow the Colorado State Patrol (CSP) to continue to provide professional and efficient communication services to members, support external agencies, and Colorado residents and visitors. 

The Colorado State Patrol’s (CSP) Executive Security Unit (ESU) engages in coordinated dignitary and critical infrastructure protection duties by providing security for occupants of the Capitol Complex.  The agency is also entrusted with the security responsibilities for visiting dignitaries and other key leaders based on threat information.  ESU troopers and security officers provide the physical security for the State Capitol, other buildings within the Capitol Complex, and surrounding parks.

Over the past four years, the demand for service at ESU has significantly increased. Most obviously, the increase has been in protests, civil unrest, and threats towards Capitol Complex occupants. For several years, the CSP has been supplementing ESU staff with members assigned to patrol duties within the Denver metro area due to the need to protect the Capitol and its occupants from violence and property destruction.

While the demand for service is increasing, the CSP’s ability to respond is decreasing based on the current available workforce.
Due to rising security concerns, additional personnel are needed in the Executive Security Unit.

The proposal will fund a new and suitable facility to provide adequate space and security for all Colorado State Patrol (CSP) collected evidence and additional staff to address the increased workload associated with the new facility.  The request is critical for the CSP to maintain every piece of evidence with a very high standard, regardless of the seriousness of the crime.  The level of confidence the public has in the CSP evidence system is directly related to the successful prosecution of cases and the professional image of the CSP. 

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