Pennsylvania State Police are dealing with a staffing shortage, as many troopers retired in recent years.

We’re told there was a hiring boom 25 to 30 years ago. Now, they’re working to fill the void as many of those troopers are retiring.

The Pennsylvania State Police has 310 openings. That number has improved from a year ago when there were 500 vacancies.

“Governor Wolf, Colonel Evanchick, they have made this a priority as far as filling our vacancies with our department with a dedicated budget,” said Lt. Robert Bailey, the recruitment services section commander for Pennsylvania State Police.

State police are using this shortage as an opportunity to diversify even more.

“Recruiting efforts, we’re going out to the community,” said Bailey. “We want to recruit the most qualified applicants, with focuses on women and minorities.”

With 11,000 applicants last year alone, the problem isn’t the number of people who apply to join the ranks.

“We have a three percent success rate of someone actually completing the hiring process,” said Bailey. “So, you have the written exam, the oral board interview, then the background investigation, the physical readiness portion, the medical evaluation, and psychological evaluation.”

With a little under 100 graduates from each cadet class and two to three classes every fiscal year, troopers say they’re well on their way to filling the gap.

State police say the shortage has not affected and will not affect your safety.