FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)

Please take the time to review our Frequently Asked Questions page for answers to any questions you may have. Should you have a question that is not included in our FAQ, please feel free to contact the Recruiting Team.

HELPFUL LINKS:

Click on the links below to learn more about the Meridian Police Department and related Law Enforcement Associations/

City of Meridian

Meridian Police and Employee Association (MPEA)

Idaho Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST)

Idaho Fraternal Order of Police (FOP)

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

GENERAL

How big is the City of Meridian?


The City of Meridian is 35 square miles and has a population of about 119,000 people.




How many staff members does the Meridian Police Department employ?


The Meridian Police Department employs 128 sworn Police Officers and 39 non-sworn Civilians, for a total of 167 employees.




Does the Meridian Police Department pay for relocation costs or offer reimbursement for moving expenses?


The Meridian Police Department does not offer a relocation package or provide any financial reimbursement for moving expenses.




Does the Meridian Police Department require their employees to live within a certain distance of the Police Station?


While the Meridian Police Department does not require their employees to live within a certain distance of the Police Station, we do encourage employees to live in the City of Meridian. Please keep in mind, employees who choose to live outside of the city limits are not eligible for travel expenses or mileage reimbursement from the city or department.




What are the Meridian Police Department's appearance standards (i.e. facial hair, jewelry, body piercings, etc.)?


Patrol and Community Service Officer uniformed males staff members shall wear their hair neatly trimmed, clean and well groomed at all times on duty. The hair shall be at least moderately tapered, shall not extend below the top of the shirt collar nor any portion of the ear.

Patrol and Community Service Officer uniformed female staff members shall wear their hair in a short daytime style or worn fastened up off the necks and ears in a single bun, ponytail or braid. Pigtails, corn-rows, dreadlocks and dual cinnamon bun hairstyles are not permitted.

Female Detectives and non-sworn staff members may wear their hair down onto their necks and shoulders or fastened up as outlined above. In either case, a professional business style is required.

All staff members’ hair color shall be required to have naturally-occurring colors to the human species and be no more than two colors.

While male staff members may have short and neatly trimmed mustaches, they must be cleanly shaven when reporting for duty in a uniform. Patrol officers are not permitted to have beards.

While on-duty female officers may wear up to five earrings in each ear, whereas male officers cannot wear earrings of any type while in uniforms. Both males and females are not permitted to wear any type of facial jewelry in uniform (i.e. nose rings, tongue studs, eyebrow rings, lip rings, ear gages or stud, etc.).

Non-sworn staff members may wear jewelry appropriate to the business community and their position, as authorized by their direct supervisor.




What is the Meridian Police Department's tattoo policy?


At no time while on duty or while representing the Meridian Police Department in any official capacity shall any tattoo or body art be visible without prior authorization from the Chief of Police.




What is the Meridian Police Department's tobacco policy?


While the Meridian Police Department encourages its members to be tobacco-free, it does not require it. However, smoking on the Meridian Police Department campus and in all department vehicles is prohibited.

While in direct contact with the public, members of this department shall not smoke or use any tobacco products uninvited in any residence or other location, under conditions that may be detrimental to good conduct, appearance, or procedure.




Does the Meridian Police Department have a union?


While the Meridian Police Department does not have a union, we do have the Meridian Police and Employee Association (MPEA). The MPEA is a non-profit organization focused on outreach in and around our community and supporting 1st responders statewide.

Meridian Police Department employees are also eligible to join the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP). Please visit the FOP Lodge 11 - Treasure Valley site for more information.




What is the Meridian Police Department's retirement system?


The Meridian Police Department participates in the Public Employee Retirement System of Idaho (PERSI). As part of PERSI, employees may participate in an optional 401K plan (with a 2% city match) and a Deferred Compensation State 457 Plan.

For more information on the retirement system, please visit the Police Officer’s Salary & Benefits page or the Police Services Salary & Benefits page.




Does the Meridian Police Department offer healthcare benefits to retirees?


The Meridian Police Department does not currently offer healthcare benefits to its retirees.




Can I apply if I am attending school?


Applicants may apply while attending school but should keep in mind that most positions are full-time and require employees to work 40 hours a week.

If you are interested in applying for a Police Officer position, it is recommended you reach out to the Recruiting Team to inquire about academy dates for the current year. Based on your expected graduation date, the recruiting team can make a recommendation as to when you should apply.





POLICE OFFICERS

What are the minimum requirements for police officer applicants?


Minimum Requirements for Entry-Level Police Officer Applicants are as follows: - Must be a United States Citizen - Must possess a valid driver's license - Must be at least 21 years of age - Must have a high school diploma or equivalent - Must have 1 of the following: minimum of 60 college credits from an accredited institution or 4 years of active duty military, with an honorable discharge - Must meet all Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) requirements for certification in the State of Idaho Minimum Requirements for Lateral Police Officer Applicants are as follows: - Must meet all the above standards - Must possess an Idaho Basic Patrol POST Certificate or out of state equivalent - Must have previous law enforcement training and experience - Must be in good standing with current department




How long does the hiring process normally take?


Typically, the hiring process takes 90-120 days.




I am an out of state applicant. How many trips will I need to make to Meridian during the hiring process?


Entry level applicants should expect to make at least 3 trips to Meridian during the hiring process, whereas lateral applicants should expect to make at least 2 trips to Meridian during the hiring process.




How long is the academy?


The Meridian Police Department conducts a Joint Patrol Academy with the Nampa Police Department. All new officers – both entry level and lateral – are required to attend the Joint Academy. Entry level officers will attend the full 17-week academy, whereas lateral officers may attend the modified 12-week academy (depending on previous training and experience).




Will I get paid during the academy?


Yes, from the date of hire all employees begin earning a salary. Meridian Police Department employees are paid once a month, and on the last business day of each month. For more information, please visit the Salary & Benefits page.




How many academy classes are held each year?


The Meridian Police Department conducts two academy classes per year. Academy classes typically begin in Spring (March-April) and in Fall (October).




How many officers are normally hired for an academy?


The Meridian Police Department does not hire a set number of officers for each academy. Instead, we hire officers based on current police officer openings, as well as the number of qualified candidates that meet the Meridian Police Department’s hiring standards.




Do I have to live at the academy?


No, the Joint Patrol Academy is not a live-in academy, and the Meridian Police Department does not provide housing for its new officers.




What happens after I graduate from the academy?


Upon graduation from the Meridian-Nampa Joint Academy, new officers will be assigned to the Field Training Program. All entry level officers will spend a minimum of 14-weeks in the Field Training Program, whereas the amount of time a lateral officer will spend in the Field Training Program is dependent upon their previous training and experience. During the Field Training program, officers will gain hands-on experience under the guidance of a Field Training Officer.




What are the general duties of Meridian Police Officers?


Meridian Police Officers general duties include, but are not limited to: - Enforces Idaho State Laws and Meridian City Ordinances by: - Issuing warnings or citations for offenses - Serving summonses, warrants, and other court related documents - Making arrests - Investigates crimes, interviews witnesses, and takes necessary action - Prepares reports for assigned cases and collects, processes, and stores evidence related to these cases (including police photographs) - Works to provide conflict resolution and mediation of disputes - Provides order maintenance - Responds to public requests for police assistance - Provides the protection of life and property - Promotes a sense of safety and security within the community - Patrols an assigned area in a marked patrol vehicle - Checks businesses and residences for suspicious conditions - Provides crowd control and traffic control at public functions - Obtains search and arrest warrants, provides testimony in court, and assists with prosecution - Attends training sessions and meetings - Contacts other law enforcement agencies to obtain or give information related to public safety - Performs other related duties, as assigned




What are the possible career paths and job assignments for Meridian Police Officers?


At the Meridian Police Department, you will begin your career in the Patrol Division. Patrol Officers generally work four 10-hour shifts, with three consecutive days off. After serving 3 years in the patrol division, officers are eligible to apply for a specialty position. Current Specialty Positions in the Meridian Police Department - Criminal Investigations Division (Detectives) - Field Training Officer - Ada Metro Swat/Hostage Negotiator - Traffic Team (Motor & DUI Units) - K-9 Officer - Drug Recognition Expert - Department Instructor - School Resource Officer




What shifts do Patrol Officers work?


At the Meridian Police Department, Patrol Officers generally work four 10-hour shifts, with three consecutive days off. There are currently three shifts available in patrol: - Day Shift: 7:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. - Swing Shift: 4:00 p.m. - 2:00 a.m. - Graveyard Shift: 9:00 p.m. - 7:00 a.m.




How often do Patrol Officers rotate shifts?


Patrol Officers rotate shifts every four months and may spend no more than two rotations on the same shift. For example, if an officer works two rotations (eight months) on Swing Shift, then he/she must rotate to Day Shift or Graveyard Shift for the next four months.




Does the Meridian Police Department have take-home cars?


At the Meridian Police Department, officers assigned to the Criminal Investigations Division, Traffic Team and K-9 Unit have assigned take-home cars. At this time, officers in the Patrol Division do not have assigned take-home cars.




What equipment does the Meridian Police Department provide?


At the Meridian Police Department, new police officers are issued all required safety equipment and an initial allotment of uniforms upon hire (except for boots).




Do Meridian Police Officers receive an annual uniform allowance?


After completing a year with the Meridian Police Department, police officers begin receiving an annual uniform allowance of $1100 that is issued in October every year.




Does the Meridian Police Department use body-worn cameras?


Yes, the Meridian Police Department has been using body-worn cameras since 2013. We are currently on our 3rd model of AXON body-worn cameras.




Does the Meridian Police Department offer overtime?


After successfully completing the Field Training Program, officers are eligible to work overtime. Overtime generally consists of special events, filling in on a team due to short staffing, and staying late to assist with calls for service.




Are Meridian Police Officers allowed to wear shorts on duty?


During the summer months, officers assigned to work on the Bike Team are permitted to wear shorts. All other uniformed personnel are not permitted to wear shorts while on duty.




Are Meridian Police Officers allowed to wear baseball caps on duty?


In the case of inclement weather, officers may wear the Meridian Police Department's approved baseball cap on duty.




Are Meridian Police Officers allowed to wear external body armor on duty?


The Meridian Police Department does not permit uniformed officers to wear external body armor on duty.




How much will I get paid as a Meridian Police Officer?


New officers are paid based on previous training and experience. Please visit the Salary & Benefits page to view the Meridian Police Department's current pay scale.




Is it possible to do a ride-along with a Meridian Police Officer?


Yes, applicants currently in the hiring process are encouraged to participate in the Meridian Police Department's ride-along program. For more information, please visit the Ride-Along & MPD Tour page.




Is it possible to meet with a recruiter and tour the Meridian Police Department?


Yes, applicants in the hiring process are encouraged to participate in a Meet & Greet with a Meridian Police Department Recruiter. During the Meet & Greet, applicants will have the opportunity to ask questions and will receive a tour of the department with a recruiter. For more information, please visit the Ride-Along & MPD Tour page.





LATERAL POLICE OFFICERS

I am a certified peace officer. Will I have to go through the same hiring process as an entry level applicant?


As a lateral peace officer applicant, you will not be required to take the written examination as part of the hiring process. After submitting an online application, lateral applicants who meet the minimum hiring qualifications will be invited to participate in the oral board interview process. Applicants who successfully pass an oral board interview will be invited to continue in the hiring process, which includes: a background investigation, the physical readiness test, an interview with the Chief of Police, a polygraph examination, a psychological evaluation, a medical examination, and a drug test. For more information, please visit the Hiring Process page.




As a certified peace officer, am I required to attend the same academy as an entry level officer?


At the Meridian Police Departmnet, all new officers - both entry level and lateral - are required to attend our academy. However, lateral officers may attend a modified 12-week academy (depending on prior training and experience).




I am a certified peace officer who has already successfully completed a field training program. Will I be required to go through the field training program at the Meridian Police Department?


Upon graduation from the Meridian Police Department's academy, all new officers - both entry level and lateral - will be assigned to the Field Training Program. The amount of time a lateral officer spends in the Field Training Program will be dependent upon their previous training and experience.




I am an out of state peace officer. Will my current POST certificate level transfer to Idaho?


Yes.




How much will I get paid as a lateral police officer?


The Meridian Police Department's pay scale predetermines the rate of pay a lateral officer will receive upon hire. The rate of pay is based on years of experience and POST certificate level. A certified lateral police officer with 1-3 years of experience will be hired at the following pay rate: - Basic POST Certificate: $26.98 - Intermediate POST Certificate: $27.79 - Advanced POST Certificate: $28.62 A certified lateral peace officer with 3-5 years of experience will be hired at the following pay rate: - Basic POST Certificate: $27.82 per hour - Intermediate POST Certificate: $28.66 per hour - Advanced POST Certificate: $29.52 per hour A certified lateral peace officer with 5+ years of experience will be hired at the following pay rate: - Basic POST Certificate: $31.54 per hour - Intermediated POST Certificate: $32.48 per hour - Advanced POST Certificate: $33.46 per hour Please note that lateral peace officers must provide proof of certification level. For more information on Meridian Police Department's pay scale, please visit the Salary & Benefits page.




How long do I have to spend in patrol before I can apply for a specialty position or promotion?


At the Meridian Police Department, all new officers must spend 3 years in patrol before they are eligible to apply for a specialty position or promotion.





COMMUNITY SERVICES OFFICERS

What are the minimum requirements for community services officer applicants?


Minimum Requirements for Community Services Officer Applicants are as follows: - Must be a United States Citizen - Must possess a valid driver's license - Must be at least 21 years of age - Must have a high school diploma or equivalent - Must have 1 of the following: minimum of 60 college credits from an accredited institution or 4 years of active duty military, with an honorable discharge




How long does the hiring process normally take?


Typically, the hiring process takes 90-120 days.




I am an out of state applicant. How many trips will I need to make to Meridian during the hiring process?


Out of state applicants should expect to make at least 2 trips to Meridian during the hiring process.




How long is the academy?


At the Meridian Police Department, new officers are required to attend a 5-week in-house academy.




Will I get paid during the academy?


Yes, from the date of hire all employees begin earning a salary. Meridian Police Department employees are paid once a month, and on the last business day of each month. For more information, please visit the Salary & Benefits page.




How many academy classes are held each year?


The Meridian Police Department conducts two academy classes per year. Academy classes typically begin in Spring (March-April) and in Fall (October).




How many officers are normally hired for an academy?


The Meridian Police Department does not hire a set number of officers for each academy. Instead, we hire officers based on current community service officer openings, as well as the number of qualified candidates that meet the Meridian Police Department’s hiring standards.




Do I have to live at the academy?


No, the academy is not a live-in academy, and the Meridian Police Department does not provide housing for its new officers.




What happens after I graduate from the academy?


Upon graduation from the academy, new officers will be assigned to the Field Training Program for a minimum of 14-weeks. During the Field Training program, officers will gain hands-on experience under the guidance of a Field Training Officer.




What are the general duties of a Meridian Community Services Officer?


Meridian Community Services Officer general duties include, but are not limited to: - Works as part of a police patrol team functioning in a support role as needed - Enforces Meridian City Ordinances - Issues warnings or citations for parking offenses and abandoned vehicles - Responds to a wide variety of calls for service throughout the city from citizens who are crime victims and officers who require assistance at a crime scene - Responds to cold calls for service such as thefts, vandalisms, burglaries, frauds, etc. - Responds to scenes in person or by phone to meet with victims and conduct fact finding interviews and/or investigations - Collects evidence and processes basic crime scenes for patrol and detectives, as needed - Writes clear and concise investigative reports critical to legal and court proceedings - Uses a variety of databases to gather information - Determines what type of crime, if any, has occurred - Articulates the elements of each crime in written form for charging documents/reports submitted for review, approval, follow-up, filing, or prosecution - Retrieves, transports, and books found property such as bicycles - Deploys traffic radar trailer, as neeeded - Attends court under subpoena and provides court testimony under oath regarding their knowledge or actions in a case - Patrols specific area(s) - Assists with traffic control, crowd control, and parking control at City special events - Attends trainings and meetings, as needed - Attends briefings with patrol teams - Delivers administrative messages - Assists detectives with pawn shop property seizures - Performs other duties, as assigned - Must display an attitude of cooperation, positivity, problem solving, and the ability to work well with others.




Are Meridian Community Services Officers allowed to wear shorts on duty?


During the summer months, police officers assigned to work on the Bike Team are permitted to wear shorts. All other uniformed personnel are not permitted to wear shorts while on duty.




Are Meridian Community Services Officers allowed to wear baseball caps on duty?


In the case of inclement weather, officers may wear the Meridian Police Department's approved baseball cap.




Are Meridian Community Services Officers allowed to wear external body armor on duty?


The Meridian Police Department does not permit uniformed officers to wear external body armor on duty.




How much will I make as a Meridian Community Services Officer?


New officers are paid based on previous training and experience. For more information, please visit the Salary & Benefits page.




Is it possible to do a ride-along with a Meridian Community Services Officer?


Yes, applicants currently in the hiring process are encouraged to participate in the Meridian Police Department's ride-along program. For more information, please visit the Ride-Along & MPD Tour page.




Is it possible to meet with a recruiter and tour the Meridian Police Department?


Yes, applicants in the hiring process are encouraged to participate in a Meet & Greet with a Meridian Police Department Recruiter. During the Meet & Greet, applicants will have the opportunity to ask questions and will receive a tour of the department with a recruiter. For more information, please visit the Ride-Along & MPD Tour page.





POLICE SERVICES

What are the minimum requirements for non-sworn and professional staff positions?


The minimum requirements for non-sworn/professional staff positions vary. To find out if you meet the mimimum requirements for any position, please visit the Meridian City Jobs page and review the job description.




How long does the hiring process normally take?


Typically, the hiring process takes 90-120 days. For more information, please visit the Hiring Process page.




I am an out of state applicant. How many trips will I need to make to Meridian during the hiring process?


Out of state applicants should expect to make at least 2 trips to Meridian during the hiring process.




How much does the Meridian Police Department pay their non-sworn and professional staff members?


The salaries for non-sworn and professional staff members vary by position. For more information, please visit the Salary & Benefits page.





HIRING PROCESS

What should I do if I need to withdraw from the hiring process or if I can't make my scheduled test/interview date?


Should you need to withdraw from the hiring process, please contact Human Resources or the Recruiting Unit prior to your scheduled test date, interview, or appointment. Human Resources may be contacted by phone at (208) 898-5503, and the Recruiting Unit may be contacted by phone at (208) 846-7323 or by email at pdrecruiting@meridiancity.org.




Police Officer Applicants Only: What do I wear to the written examination and physical readiness test?


For the written examination and physical readiness test, it is appropriate for applicants to wear physical training attire.




What do I wear to the oral board interview, to meet with my background investigator, or other scheduled events with the Meridian Police Department?


It is recommended that applicants dress to impress for any scheduled interview, meeting or event at the Meridian Police Department. For interviews and meetings, business formal attire is recommended. For ride-alongs and department tours, business casual attire is recommended.




Who goes through a background investigation?


The Meridian Police Department requires all applicants for all positions to go through a background investigation.




What elements of an applicant's background may result in his/her disqualification?


During the background investigation, an applicant's prior personal conduct, driving record, credit history, any previous drug use, and any criminal convictions are reviewed and considered. Applicants who do not meet Meridian Police Department standards, will be disqualified from the hiring process.




I don't have the best driving record. Will that disqualify me?


An applicant's driving record is considered during the background investigation. The following are automatic disqualifiers related to an applicant's driving record: - More than 5 moving traffic violations within the past 5 years - A conviction of DUI within the past 5 years




I don't have the best credit score. Will that disqualify me?


An applicant's credit history is considered during the background investigation. Any credit history problems will be discussed with the applicant and evaluated on a case-by-case basis by the background investigator.




Is drug use an automatic disqualifier?


An applicant's pervious drug use is considered during the background investigation. The following are automatic disqualifiers related to an applicant's previous drug use: - Any occasion of manufacturing or delivering of a controlled substance - Use of marijuana, performance enhancing drugs, or Psilocybin (Mushrooms) within the past 3 years - Use of any controlled substance, including but not limited to: amphetamines, methamphetamine, cocaine, hallucinogens, opiates, spice, bath salts, synthetic drugs, or other narcotics within the past 10 years - "Huffing" of any substance, including but not limited to: gasoline, glue, paint, and paint thinner within the past 5 years.




What are your criminal history disqualifiers?


An applicant's criminal history is considered during the background investigation. The following are automatic disqualifiers related to an applicant's criminal history: - Any proven allegations of Domestic Violence, whether criminally charged or not - Misdemeanor convictions within the past 5 years - Any felony convictions




What will happen if I am found to have omitted information or lied during the hiring process?


Lying or with-holding information during the application or background process is grounds for automatic disqualification.




What are some additional reasons I might be disqualified from the hiring process?


A thorough and complete background investigation is completed for each and every applicant prior to receiving a conditional job offer. Based on the findings of the investigation, there are several factors that may also lead an applicant to be disqualified from the hiring process. Some additional automatic disqualifiers not listed in the previous FAQ questions are: - Documented disciplinary problems, of a serious nature, with previous employers - Documented abuse of sick leave with previous employers - Military dismissal for a bad conduct charge, dishonorable discharge, or administrative discharge other than honorable from the military service.




I am a current peace officer or have prior law enforcement experience. What could disqualify me?


As a current or previous law enforcement officer, the standing with any law enforcement agency you've been employed with is considered along with any allegations of misconduct. During the background investigation, the background investigator will make an in-person visit to the agency(ies) for which you have been employed to review personnel and training records.




If I am disqualified from the hiring process, can I reapply?


Applicants who are disqualified from the hiring process may be eligible to re-apply depending upon the reason for disqualification. For those who do not successfully pass the written examination, physical readiness test, or oral board interview may re-apply after 1 year. For those who fail to show up for a scheduled test date, interview, or appointment without prior permission from Human Resources or the Recruiting Unit may re-apply after 3 years. For those who are disqualified in the background investigation due to recent drug use, recent traffic offenses, or recent misdemeanor criminal convictions may re-apply after the necessary amount of time has passed according to Meridian Police Department standards.





MILITARY

Are there any waivers for testing for active duty military?


At this time, the Meridian Police Department does not offer any waivers for testing for active duty military.




Can active duty, reserve or military veterans apply?


Yes, the Meridian Police Department is proud to employ US military veterans, as well as reservists and National Guardsmen. If you are active duty, it is recommended you reach out to our Recruiting Team to discuss your transition from the military to civilian life (i.e. suggested timeline to apply, the hiring process, etc.).




Can I apply if I was discharged with a general or uncharacterized discharge from the military?


No, the Meridian Police Department requires all military veterans to have an honorable discharge. Any military dismissal for a bad conduct charge, dishonorable discharge, or administrative discharge other than hornorable from military service is an automatic disqualifier.




Can I apply if I was discharged with a dishonorable discharge from the military?


No, the Meridian Police Department requires all military veterans to have an honorable discharge. Any military dismissal for a bad conduct charge, dishonorable discharge, or administrative discharge other than hornorable from military service is an automatic disqualifier.




Can I apply if I was discharged under less than honorable conditions from the military?


No, the Meridian Police Department requires all military veterans to have an honorable discharge. Any military dismissal for a bad conduct charge, dishonorable discharge, or administrative discharge other than hornorable from military service is an automatic disqualifier.




Does the City of Meridian offer preference to Veterans?


The City of Meridian will give a preference in the hiring process to qualified veterans for non-key employees in accordance with Idaho Code Title 65, Chapter 5. In some cases, a qualified veteran may file a late application. For additional information, please contact Human Resources at 208-898-5503.





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MERIDIAN, IDAHO 83642

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