Governor signs Dancer bill to improve State Police recruiting

Governor signs Dancer bill to improve State Police recruiting

Ron Dancer

TRENTON, N.J. – Assemblyman Ron Dancer’s bill aimed at attracting new troopers to the State Police force was signed into law by Gov. Phil Murphy on Tuesday.

The new law (A5074/S3265) permits members of the State Police Retirement System to purchase service credit for prior law enforcement service in another state or the federal government, allowing them to retire up to five years sooner. The measure incentivizes, and makes room for, younger recruits.

“Recruiting has become more difficult for the State Police,” said Dancer (R-Ocean). “This law recognizes cops who have honorably protected and served before becoming a member of our distinguished State Police, while addressing the recent alarming decline in qualified applicants.”

The 2021 recruiting deadline was met with an unusually low number of qualified applicants – below 3,000. In a typical year, the State Police would receive between 15,000 and 20,000 applications.

“Potential recruits see how difficult the job is becoming due to negative portrayals of police and increasing violence and disrespect for law enforcement in too many communities. This important job is becoming less enticing, and this measure is an effort to counteract that,” Dancer finished.