A total of 40 police officers have been hired by BART this year alone because of review that recommended an increase of hires over a five-year period.
In comparison, the number of officers hired this year is the same number of hires from the last two years combined.
In the past, BART has had trouble luring new officers but under the most recent four-year labor contract, new recruits receive a $15000 signing bonus.
BART police officers received a one time 6% salary increase and annual raises ranging from 2.5 to 2.75% over the remaining three years.
“Many would-be hires are now taking a second look at BART,” BART interim police chief Ed Alvarez said. “For the first time in years our hiring pace is ahead of our attrition rate and that’s allowing us to increase the number of boots on the ground in the BART system.”
As far as the South Bay expansion, the extension into San Jose could be built sooner than expected.
The federal government announced it would provide a $125 million grant to help build phase two of the Silicon Valley BART extension in Downtown San Jose.
Phase two will start at Berryessa in North San Jose and it will add six miles and four more stations in East San Jose, Downtown San Jose and Santa Clara on a path that will run primarily underground.