Maine facing state trooper shortage

Posted Nov. 06, 2010, at 12:49 p.m.

PORTLAND, Maine — The Maine Department of Public Safety is scrambling to fill state police vacancies as a wave of troopers becomes eligible for retirement.

Col. Patrick Fleming, state police chief, says there are currently 27 openings, and another 40 troopers are expected to retire in the coming year. He says the state is working to recruit new troopers but there will continue to be a shortage because it takes time to get them trained.

The state police force is authorized for a complement of 326 personnel, compared to the current level of 299.

Fleming says Mainers needn’t be alarmed. He says the force is managing vacations and time off and using overtime to ensure that adequate troopers are out on the road.