More than 1K apply to LAPD after increasing officer starting pay by 13%

In a bid to attract more candidates to the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), the city recently approved a significant increase in the starting pay for new officers. This move has already resulted in a surge of job applications, with the department receiving an unprecedented number of applicants in the past month.

Application Numbers

According to reports, the LAPD received a staggering 1,048 applications in August 2023 alone, marking the highest number of applications in a single month since September 2020.

Previous Application Rates

Prior to the pay increase, the LAPD was averaging around 840 applications per month, indicating a substantial boost in interest following the announcement of the higher starting salaries.

Pay Increase Details

In late August, the Los Angeles City Council voted to ratify a new contract with the city’s police officers, which included a nearly 13% increase in starting pay for officers. This decision raised the starting salary for a new LAPD officer to $86,192 per year.

Additionally, the contract stipulates an annual base raise of 3% for officers. When combined with additional bonuses, officers covered by the new contract will see a 4% to 6% wage increase each year for the next four years.

Total Wage Increase

The substantial pay hike, coupled with the annual base raises and bonuses, represents a significant boost in compensation for LAPD officers, making the department more attractive to potential recruits.

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LAPD’s Response

In response to the influx of applications, the LAPD has implemented additional screenings and examinations to manage the growing volume of prospective candidates. The department has also made efforts to streamline the application process, aiming to shorten the time between application submission and the start of academy training to under three months.

Current Staffing Levels

Despite the surge in applications, the LAPD has faced challenges in maintaining its desired staffing levels. Chief Michel Moore reported that an additional 52 officers have either retired, resigned, or moved to different agencies in recent weeks. This has resulted in a current staffing level of 8,959 sworn officers, marking one of the lowest points in over a decade for the department.

Mayor’s Goal

To address the staffing shortage, Mayor Karen Bass has set a goal to increase the number of sworn officers in the LAPD to approximately 9,500 by June 2024.


The LAPD’s decision to increase the starting pay for new officers has proven to be an effective strategy in attracting a larger pool of applicants. With the department receiving a record number of applications in August, the pay hike has generated renewed interest in careers with the LAPD. However, challenges remain in maintaining adequate staffing levels, and the department will need to continue its efforts to recruit and retain qualified officers to meet the mayor’s goal of increasing the sworn officer count.


  1. What was the percentage increase in starting pay for LAPD officers? The starting pay for LAPD officers was increased by nearly 13%.
  2. What is the new starting salary for LAPD officers? The new starting salary for LAPD officers is $86,192 per year.
  3. How often will LAPD officers receive a base raise? LAPD officers will receive an annual base raise of 3%.
  4. How much will LAPD officers’ total wage increase over the next four years? LAPD officers covered by the new contract will see a 4% to 6% wage increase each year for the next four years.
  5. What is the current staffing level of the LAPD? The current staffing level of the LAPD is 8,959 sworn officers, marking one of the lowest points in over a decade.
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