Baltimore Police Overtime Pay Up 40 Percent

BALTIMORE (AP) — The Baltimore Police Department has increased overtime spending by 40 percent through June and is on track to continue rising amid a struggle to fill vacancies.

Data obtained by The Baltimore Sun shows spending this fiscal year is on track to rise another 40 percent.

City officials say officers are working more overtime because of staffing shortages. There are about 200 vacancies among the force of 3,100. Other officers are on medical leave or suspended.

The city increased its budget for police overtime to $17 million last year but still outspent that figure by $6 million. City Council members say they want the department to stay within its budget.

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake has proposed hiring 300 additional officers, but that proposal has been met with opposition.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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