Golden Valley Police Department Still Growing
In the short time that Virgil Green has been police chief in Golden Valley, the department has seen its workforce shrink to as few as eight full-time police officers on the force. The department is considered fully-staffed at 31 officers.
“We’re starting to see that we’re in a better space than where we were at a year ago, and that’s all due to people just walking in the door, having an interview with us, and being transparent with them about ‘Hey, this is what happened,’ and this is a good agency, and for the most, part, all of those people who came in are saying ‘This is a department I would like to work for,’ because they see there is room to grow with their professional career,” said Green.
Still, in order to keep working on building his full-time staff–and not burning out the 19 he does have on-staff–Green has asked for an extension of the agreement the city has with the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office to provide deputies to cover day shifts in Golden Valley. Green has asked for a six- to twelve-month extension.
“We know it’s not going to be the complete term of that, but that will give us some time to hire some additional people,” he said.
Green said he’s proud of his department being able to develop community service officers into full-time officers, also, and that it’s helped with the short-staffing issues.
“They already know the city and the agency, so we’ve been able to have that pipeline from the CSO to a police officer,” he said. “We’ve actually had four of those CSOs go from CSO to police officer, and the men and women who have been a CSO are doing an outstanding job for the agency.”
Green hopes to have the department back to full strength within a few short months.
“This is an agency that, yeah, we went through some challenges but we’re coming out of those challenges,” he said. “We’re making the best to make sure we provide the safety that the citizens of Golden Valley have always expected.”