BAY COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) -- Florida Highway Patrol troopers held a recruitment fair on Friday at their Panama City station to help fill some open positions.
There is a trooper shortage across the state with over 200 vacancies.
At the recruitment fair, troopers said they are looking to hire locals to work in the Panhandle.
"It use to be in the past that if you asked anybody if you want to be a trooper, you might have to go down to Miami," Lt. Eddie Elmore with FHP said."That's certainly not the case anymore."
Officials with the Florida Highway Patrol said that with the trooper shortage, it can make it difficult to respond to calls in a timely manner. They said the goal is to respond to the scene of a crash within 30 minutes or less.
"Now when we have shortages that response time lengthens and that's what we're trying to stay on top of," Lt. Elmore said.
A recent change in salary could help make becoming a trooper seem more attractive.
"The Florida legislature has granted our salary hike," Lt. Elmore explained. "They've up'd it to $36,200, which we're hoping it's gonna help increase our applicant base."
The salary change goes into effect in July.
The Florida Highway Patrol has lost more than 900 troopers because they either retired or resigned from their positions.
Some of the requirements are you must be at least 19 years old and a U.S. citizen. You must also have a valid driver's licence. For more info about becoming a trooper, you can visit http://www.Beatrooper.com.