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Port Authority raises age requirement for military vet police recruits

Photo Credit: Cliffview Pilot File Photo

Military veterans over 35 will be able to apply to become Port Authority police officers, as part of a major recruitment effort aimed at boosting the force by 175 next year.

The authority’s Board of Commissioners this week replaced the existing policy for the next three years, allowing veterans to deduct up to six years of active service from their age — increasing the potential age limit to 41.

The change keeps with New York and New Jersey policies that account for military service in determining eligibility of veterans applying for police jobs, the authority said.

The recruitment effort for this August’s academy class — which the Port Authority said is the first of its kind in six years — begins May 10 and concludes June 17.

“The goal is to create an extensive and current list of top-notch candidates for a new police academy class in 2014,” the authority said in a release.

“The Board action will help ensure that the highest qualified candidates are eligible to become members of the Port Authority Police Department,” said Port Authority Chairman David Samson. “Those who have admirably served our country deserve our unwavering support as do the men and women of the PAPD who risk their lives every day to safeguard Port Authority facilities.”

Candidates must be at least 19 to take the test and at least 21 years old to enter the academy. They also must have at least 60 college credits or have two years of continuous military service with an honorable discharge.

“Our goal is to find the best and the brightest candidates to preserve and protect Port Authority assets, which are some of the world’s most iconic and visited destinations,” said Port Authority Vice Chairman Scott Rechler.  “This new recruitment and change to existing policy will allow us to expand our force and consider the extensive experience of military veterans who may have previously exceeded the age limit.”

This fall’s class will be the second largest in Port Authority history, surpassed only by the 236 recruits who graduated from the academy in September 2002.

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