Competitive Salary and Benefits
The Northampton Police Department offers a competitive salary and benefits package, including an Educational Incentive Program that recognizes more degrees than many other police departments.
Under the current contract (FY20-22), the patrol officer salary range is $48,588.80 to $66,221.55 (FY20), $49,318-$67,215 (FY21), and $50,057-$68,223 (FY22). Officers receive eleven (11) paid holidays annually.
Officers are also eligible to participate in the Educational Incentive Program. Officers with applicable degrees earn the following amounts annually (1/2 paid in June and 1/2 paid in December) in addition to their base salary:
Associate's Degree: $4,000
Bachelor's Degree: $8,000
Master's Degree: $10,000
Applicable degrees must be in one of the following subject areas: public administration, sociology, criminal justice, psychology, forensic science, computer science with a concentration in forensic computer science, law enforcement, or political science.
Officers who have a degree at any level in a subject area that is not in the previously identified areas of study, earn $1,500 annually. Each Officer's degree is subject to review by the Chief of Police and the Director of Human Resources.
New Police Building
The state of the art police facility on Center Street was completed in 2012. The facility includes ample space for all functions and includes locker rooms, an employee fitness facility, a Crime Scene Services lab, an indoor firing range, a training/meeting room, and a separate training room with a MILO Firearms Training Simulator.
Exceptional Cruiser Fleet
NPD officers operate Ford Explorers that are well-maintained and well-equipped. Cruisers contain mobile data terminals, in-cruiser camera systems, and medical and tactical equipment.
At NPD, we embrace new technology. Our Accidental Recontructionists use Crash Data Retrieval technology to determine what contributed to a motor vehicle collision. Our Crime Scene Technicians use specialized cameras to see “invisible injuries.” Members of our Small Unmanned Aircraft Unit use drones to capture and map crime scenes and to conduct searches for missing or wanted individuals. Our DHQ software system is used at each shift change to share centralized information. Detail Tracking System software allows staff to download an app so that they can receive notifications and sign up for overtime and road details from their phones. Every officer has a user profile with the Municipal Police Institute and can log in anytime to take training courses. Finally, our MILO firearms training system allows officers to participate in shoot/don’t shoot scenarios to practice and reflect on their critical thinking related to use of force incidents.
Commitment to Professional Development
We know that veteran officers value continued training and professional development opportunities throughout their careers. An average NPD officer attends over 100 hours of training each year and these classes cover a wide range of topics.
In addition to training opportunities across Massachusetts and New England, we’ve sent officers to the Rx Drug Abuse and Heroin Summit in Atlanta, to Colorado to study the work of Crime Scene Technicians, to Florida to learn about Domestic Violence, to Pennsylvania to study traffic safety, to San Diego and Chicago to attend the IACP Annual Conference, and even to Israel and Jordan as part of an exchange program.
Varied Specialty Assignment Opportunities
Every officer has their own areas of interest and we work to support those interests. Officers may become a DART officer, Crime Scene Services Technician, Field Training Officer, sUAS pilot, bike patrol officer, Firearms or Defensive Tactics Instructor, Accreditation Team member, School Resource Officer, Drug Recognition Expert, CPR/First Responder Instructor, or may engage in any of our many community outreach efforts.
Advanced Uniforms and Equipment
Officers are permitted to wear load-bearing external vests to reduce and prevent chronic back and neck injuries that can be caused by heavy belts. We’ve adopted flexible, breathable uniform pants for all uniformed personnel. Our bike patrol officers wear reflective and breathable uniforms. We know that as times change, so do the options that are available to best meet our needs and keep us safe.
The Northampton Police Department is a leader in the field of policing. The department was only the sixth in Massachusetts to achieve accreditation and we have been accredited since 2002. This means that we meet the high professional standards established by the Massachusetts Police Accreditation Commission.
The Northampton Police Department and our individual personnel have earned many awards over the years. In 2013, we received the New England Association of Chiefs of Police Community Policing Award for our combined community outreach initiatives. In 2016, we were recognized by the International Association of Chiefs of Police and were given the IACP/Cisco Community Policing Award for our post-overdose response program known as DART. In 2016, we also earned an Honorable Mention from IACP/Login Inc., for Excellence in Victim Services Awards for our extensive work with victims of domestic violence. In 2019, our police department was recommended, and then selected by the IACP, to be one of only 22 police departments out of about 18,000 across the U.S. to be included in the IACP’s Thought Leadership series. The series highlighted the great work of progressive departments across the U.S. A five-minute documentary-style film about NPD was featured at the IACP conference in Chicago.
In addition to our department as a whole, many of our individual staff members have been recognize for their professionalism, bravery, innovation, and dedication to their community.