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  • Anyone with knowledge on Montana HP

    I have some questions for anyone who is familiar with the highway patrol. I am looking for information that is not posted on their website.

  • #2
    Questions such as?

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    • #3
      1. What is the shift schedule?

      2. How are you assigned you first duty location ( is it based on the needs of the dept or do they try to stay close to your preference, ex: in AR and OK, you are given three choices and for the most part you'll be put in one of those three.)

      3. I know the website talks about laterals, if you don't have to do the entire length of the academy how much does one do if you are certified. (I know it probably varies depending on what they accept)

      4. Where are the best places to live? I've been looking around the Billings and the Dillon area for starters.

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      • #4
        I believe the shifts are still 8 hours and they rotate back and forth from nights to days every couple of weeks. For awhile they wear working 6 8's with 3 off in between. I think it depends on where you are working too. You will also be on call for a certain number of days each month for things like fatal crashes.

        I have seen the assigments occur a couple different ways. It normally goes by academy rank. The top ranked students get a choice where the rest get the left overs. I have also seen it go where they gave the list of openings to the students, and then had them work it out between themselves during the academy class. But this seems to change often. I would call and speak to someone attached to the hiring process and academy to see if they have a perminant system now.

        The normal Acadmey for LE who are not certified yet is between 12-14 weeks and takes place in Helena. You will be mixed in with other agencies such as municipal, county, and tribal law enforcement. They sometimes also include, brand inspectors, game wardens, and detention/correction officers. Then you will attend the Highway Patrol course in the same location. This is the class that most lateral transfers attend. It lasts around 7 weeks and includes things like driving, shooting, at scene crash investigation, MHP policy and procedure, etc. Then after that you attend the FTO program. And that could occur anywhere in the state. You will most likely have numerous FTOs, each in a different area. I believe MHP's FTO program is the standard 12-14 weeks.

        It all depends on what you want when it comes to the best places to live. If you want to be next to a big city expect to pay allot more for housing. Bozeman, Missoula, and Helena are probably some of the most expensive large cities in Montana. Butte, Great Falls, and Billings seem to be a little cheaper for land prices. Dillon is a nice size town and the prices are reasonable. Eastern Montana tends to be cheaper then Western, as does Northern over Southern Montana. No matter where you live you get paid the same in the Patrol.

        Montana Highway Patrol

        Association of Montana Troopers
        Last edited by Darkwulfe; 06-21-2007, 07:38 PM.

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        • #5
          I asked about the shifts and it sounds like they work 4 10s now. I am not sure if that is department wide though. And it sounds like they still switch back and forth between nights and days. Some times as often as every week.

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          • #6
            If you need more specifics, PM me. My buddy is MHP here in town. He's also an instructor at the academy in Helena.

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            • #7
              Mhp

              Don't forget to ask about their training wages while at the Academy. Last I heard is they want to pay you $11. something an hour instead of your probationary rate. Rediculous.
              "God Created Police Officers So Firefighters Would Have A Hero"

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Napstr View Post
                Don't forget to ask about their training wages while at the Academy. Last I heard is they want to pay you $11. something an hour instead of your probationary rate. Rediculous.
                Don't know, but I will ask and get back to you.

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                • #9
                  Not long ago, around the year 2000, they were paid $7 an hour while attending the academy. I think they sold it to new recruits by telling them they were getting free room and board on top of the wage. I thought they had since changed this and you are paid your normal wage during training. But I could be wrong.

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                  • #10
                    $11.25/hour while in the academy -- see below

                    http://www.doj.mt.gov/enforcement/hi...rybenefits.asp
                    He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you.
                    -- Nietzsche

                    Certainly there is no hunting like the hunting of man and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never really care for anything else thereafter.
                    -- Hemingway

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                    • #11
                      Dont get me wrong

                      Dont get me wrong.........MHP is a good organization. The problem is........when you pay one agency say 18-22 bucks an hour when they are attending the Academy and the Highway Patrol is paying $11 something an hour..........what kind of message are you sending.

                      All departments are paying for the room/board and food, so that's not even a factor. As long as MHP does this, which is clearly a money saving way of doing business and being CHEAP, they will continue to have a difficult time recruiting.
                      Last edited by Napstr; 07-10-2007, 02:34 PM.
                      "God Created Police Officers So Firefighters Would Have A Hero"

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                      • #12
                        Retirement and Medical Insurance

                        Well, I think I'll take advantage of the activity on this thread and ask a couple questions of those "in the know."

                        Reference: http://www.doj.mt.gov/enforcement/hi...rybenefits.asp

                        Retirement --
                        When it says "full retirement benefits" after 20 years, does that mean 100% of former salary? or something like the standard 50% at 20 like many other states?

                        Medical Insurance/Family Coverage --
                        My department pays alot, but also requires you to pay about $300-$400/month if you want your family covered under your plan as well. That cuts about $5K off the top per year. What is MHP's plan? Is it expensive to get your family covered?

                        These two issues factor alot into my decision to apply with an agency.
                        He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you.
                        -- Nietzsche

                        Certainly there is no hunting like the hunting of man and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never really care for anything else thereafter.
                        -- Hemingway

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                        • #13
                          Try these links........this will help explain without me getting sore fingers


                          http://doa.mt.gov/perb/

                          http://mpera.mt.gov/mpors.asp
                          "God Created Police Officers So Firefighters Would Have A Hero"

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Wow! Thanks for the good links. I'm not an expert on retirements, but that looks like a pretty straight-forward and user-friendly system. Summarized: vested at 5, eligible at 20, either defined benefit or contribution (your choice), 50% of annual salary (figured by average of highest 36 consecutive months) at 20 years, employee contributes 9%, employer contributes 14%, and the state contributes 29%.

                            Is that a correct characterization?

                            Now, what about medical insurance?
                            He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you.
                            -- Nietzsche

                            Certainly there is no hunting like the hunting of man and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never really care for anything else thereafter.
                            -- Hemingway

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              That's correct...........medical depends on the agency.
                              "God Created Police Officers So Firefighters Would Have A Hero"

                              Comment

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