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3.2.23 -WACO, Texas (KWTX)

Texas state lawmakers working to retain law enforcement officers in the Lone Star State. State Congressmen are making efforts to recruit and keep our officers here in Texas. Officials are pushing for a law called the Recruit and Retain Act to make this possible.

Congressman John Carter, who introduced the act, said the defund the police movement made it impossible to keep our officers, and he wants to do something about it.

Tammy Bracewell, retired cop who served for more than 15 years, said something needs to be done.

Bracewell said recruiting and keeping police has been challenging for a while, but even more now.

“It’s been progressively more difficult, probably over the last 25-ish years. When I was a police officer it wasn’t easy, but it was also not as difficult as it is today,” said Bracewell.

State congressman, John Carter, wants to fix this issue by introducing the Recruit and Retain Act.

He said it provides funding to keep our officers in their badges and welcome more.

“There does have to be some type of incentive because some places are in a crisis right now because they don’t have enough police officers to even answer calls for service, which is a large part of what police do,” said Bracewell.

Carter states that the defund the police movement made it harder to keep officers.

He said this results in overtime costs being higher, less police on our streets, which makes police officers stretched thin.

“The climate as a country and the opinions towards police officers is definitely an obstacle that many police departments aren’t able to overcome,” said Bracewell.

Temple Police Chief Deputy, Allen Teston, said the department is facing similar issues.

He said the funding from the act could provide more recruitment resources.

“The media can help. Radio ads, television ads, or billboards. Billboards are expensive to put advertisement up on. Just pushing social media advertisement to reach the population. Another way is training our recruiting staff on how to reach candidates we’re seeking. We’re always trying to be educated on how to reach the market moving forward,” said Teston.

Regardless of if the bill passes or not, Bracewell said there needs to be some kind of action.

“Because law enforcement does need to be able to attract not just potential law enforcement officers, but qualified potential law enforcement officers.”

According to Congress.gov, the Senate read the bill twice.

Now, it’s referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

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