Some fixes are on the way.
It’s going to be a bit easier to become a trooper, Georgia public safety officials say. Applicants to the state trooper academy now can take a series of skills tests through the state’s fledgling Work Ready assessment program at 35 technical colleges, rather than sporadic tests administered by the Department of Public Safety at just a few sites. Department officials say the convenience of the new program, which debuted in 2006, will combat the difficulty of recruiting new troopers. The Georgia State Patrol is about 200 troopers short of the 953 positions it has available, and has been competing with county and municipal police departments for a dwindling crop of candidates, said Lisa Maier, the department’s deputy human resources director. Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have drawn away many of the service members who typically seek careers in law enforcement, Maier said.