PITTSFIELD -- A proposed crime analyst position in the Pittsfield Police Department could have an immediate positive impact on operations, Chief Michael J. Wynn says.
An ordinance required to establish the new post will go before the City Council tonight.
Wynn said the proposal grew from discussions among public safety officials that are held periodically at Mayor Daniel L. Bianchi's office.
"I was asked what one thing we could do now to change the way we operate," Wynn said, adding that the analyst position -- one that has been discussed in the past -- also saw support from Berkshire County District Attorney David Capeless and Berkshire County Sheriff Thomas Bowler during the meeting.
Adding an analyst to condense the stream of information and reports that come into the PPD on a daily basis for use by officers in the field and other agencies could be "a game changer," he said.
The civilian position, which requires a criminal justice background with knowledge of statistics and analytics, would have a starting salary of $42,886.
The funding was included in the current city budget, but the position requires an ordinance change.
The Personnel Department and Personnel Review Board have reviewed the proposal and given approvals, Wynn said.
The department receives hundreds of reports and other information over a 24-hour period, the chief said, and the analyst would review and condense the material into useful segments for distribution.
An example might include collecting reports and data concerning a rash of burglaries from around the county and providing offices key details such as a vehicle type, plate number and description of articles taken that might lead to an arrest.
The analyst also would chart "hot spots" for certain activities over certain periods of time, which would allow officers on patrol to target problem areas.
The position is a best practice standard that many police departments have established, Wynn said.
Council President Kevin Sherman said Friday he hopes to move the ordinance quickly through the adoption process, which normally requires a trip to the Ordinance and Rules Committee for review.
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