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Today, the Riley County Law Enforcement Agency (Law Board) approved the Riley County Police Department (RCPD) Budget for 2024. The approved budget is $26,937,092 minus a carryover of $256,633 for a realized cost of $26,680,459.
The realized cost represents the actual costs to taxpayers in Riley County.
The goal of the 2024 budget is focusing on the personnel needs we continue to face,” RCPD Director Brian Peete said. “As a service-based department, we understand our employees truly are our greatest asset.”
With this additional funding, the department will add:
RCPD has utilized the Consumer Price Index (CPI) Midwest Region annual percent change for the past 15 years to determine COLA. The 2022 annual was 8.0% which was originally proposed. At the April 17 Law Board Meeting, the Board requested the reduced COLA represented in this approved budget.
RCPD implemented approximately 50% of the Salary Survey conducted by The Arnold Group (TAG) in 2023. The comprehensive Salary Survey revealed RCPD lost its position in the local job market. The 2024 implementation will cover 37% of the remaining Salary Survey or approximately 19% of the total, leaving approximately 31% of the total for future years.
During budget discussions, $1,463,492 for staffing of community-focused enhancements and training programs was removed from consideration. Through the use of a strategic plan, these items will be addressed during future budgets. Commitment to attracting and retaining talented staff remained the focus and priority during these discussions.
“We want to compensate our employees fairly,” Peete said. “The Salary Survey is an objective path to this goal. Continuing to implement the Salary Survey and providing our employees with a reasonable COLA represents an investment into public safety for Riley County for years to come.”
The majority (86%) of the RCPD budget is expended on personnel. Currently, there are 1.5 police officers per 1,000 residents in Riley County, a significantly lower number than Kansas (2.6) and national (2.39) ratios. Despite the low officer-to-citizen ratio, Riley County has enjoyed lower crime rates than the state average for the past 19 years. Past research, supported by recent inquiries, has revealed RCPD’s percentage of the City and County’s overall budgets is comparable to or lower than similarly-sized departments in the region.
“We recognize the level of services our local taxpayers have come to expect and deserve from RCPD,” Peete said. “Manhattan and Riley County continue to attract businesses and residents because it is a safe place to live. We will continue to provide efficient, effective, and fair services to our community.”
Approved 2024 Budget
Visit our budget page for additional information and documentation.
*RCPD’s main funding source is property tax. RCPD represented 15.48% of County property tax and 18.89% of City of Manhattan property tax allocations for 2023.