ORLANDO, Fla. (FOX 35 Orlando) - Application after application, Phillip Reasons is one of many who stopped at Florida Highway Patrol Headquarters for its career fair.
“I just love the tradition aspect. I love the respect that they have, people have for FHP. When you see the black and tan on the highway, you slow down. You don't want to get that ticket so I just want to be a part of the best,” said Phillip Reasons, of Palm Bay.
FHP is looking to boost staffing, because the fewer troopers they have, the longer it takes to get to a crash.
“Our goal is to get to these crashes in a response time of less than 30 minutes, and sometimes that's not able to happen,” said FHP Lt. Kim Montes.
FHP is pulling out all the stops to recruit, including all of the vehicles and even the K-9 to try and get new troopers. They recently increased the base salary to $40,000 a year. It’s $45,000 in Orange County, where it competes with popular agencies including Orlando Police and the Sheriff’s Office. They also pay while you train. That intrigued Antonio Barragan.
“You're paid. You get fed. You sleep there, and then once the training is done, you got a job right off the bat,” said Barragan, of Altamonte Springs.
“The one good thing about FHP, if you start out in Orlando and you want to move to Miami, you don't have to change agencies,” said Lt. Montes.
But for Phillip Reasons, his biggest incentive is being a role model for his son.
“Seeing a lot of deaths and things going on so I want to be a part of that, slowing people down, making sure people go home to their families.”
You can also apply online at BeATrooper.com.