Police Officer

Ames, IA
City of Ames

General Information

Ames IA Recruiting BrochureThe City of Ames is conducting a recruitment to establish a Civil Service eligibility list for the position of Police Officer with the City of Ames Police Department. The list will be valid for up to one year from the date of certification by the Ames Civil Service Commission and may be used to fill one or more vacancies in this classification. In addition, City of Ames Civil Service employees who have previously held Civil Service status in this classification and are interested in voluntarily demoting or laterally transferring into the current vacancy must submit their application by the deadline.

Police Officers perform work related to the enforcement of law, maintenance of order, protection of life and property, and prevention of crime; contributes to citywide problem-solving and performs related work as required. Work is within a 24/7/365 environment and subject to shift assignment and occasional mandatory overtime. Annual salaries for Police Officers are based on a 2068 hours worked schedule. Salaries may be subject to change according to worked overtime.

To witness what it is like to work for the City of Ames Police Department and find additional information on the pre-employment requirements, please visit the Ames PD website: Join the Ames Police Department. For further information please also see Ames Police Department Facebook Page and City of Ames Police Twitter Page .


The starting annual salary for this position is $59,679 ($28.8583 per hour) as of July 1, 2022. Specified months of City of Ames PD service are applied as step increases, per the PPME bargaining agreement.

The City of Ames is offering lateral transfers for certified officers, up to step D (49-72 months). Current Iowa Law Enforcement Academy certification will be required before applying any step consideration.

The current steps are outlined below:

July 1, 2022 through June 30, 2023

Months     Annual Pay

0-12           $59,679

13-24         $63,323

25-48        $66,968

49-72        $70,611

73-96        $74,256

97-120       $77,901

121-216      $80,043

216+          $82,445

This position is also bound by a residency requirement per the same bargaining agreement, which is outlined under “Other Supplemental Information” later in this posting.

Our comprehensive benefits package can be viewed at: City of Ames Benefits

Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program: The PSLF Program is a federal program that is intended to encourage individuals to work in public service by forgiving the balance of their federal student loans. To qualify, the individual must have made 120 qualifying payments while employed by a qualifying employer. For more information, please visit the website through this link: PSLF Program

The dates for agility and POST testing for this recruitment are currently scheduled for February 24th and April 14th, 2023. Further details will be emailed to those candidates who qualify for both testing components prior to each date. Interviews will commence the Monday following each testing date for candidates with passing scores in agility and the POST written exam.

Examples of Essential Job Functions

Patrols assigned area in various vehicles or on foot to prevent, discover, and deter the commission of crime; to enforce criminal laws, traffic laws, parking regulations, and City ordinances; and to check the functioning of traffic signals, and road conditions. Monitors and directs vehicular and pedestrian traffic as required.

Provides general assistance to persons in need; provides first aid for injured persons. Answers calls regarding complaints, misdemeanors and felonies; interviews persons with complaints or inquiries; attempts to make proper disposition or direct them to proper authorities. Apprehends suspects. Conducts investigations; searches for and preserves evidence; questions suspects and witnesses; takes written statements; maintains surveillance over persons and places; effects arrests and charges; creates reports; serves warrants. Answers calls involving automobile accidents; takes safeguards to prevent further accidents; clears scene of obstructions and/or wreckage. Conducts accident investigations; reports traffic control device malfunctions and obstructions of view; examines roadways and vehicles; takes various types of measurements associated with crime scenes vehicle crashes and other incidents. Enforces traffic regulations; operates radar equipment; issues traffic and parking tickets; directs traffic at community events. Assists other emergency personnel as needed; secures emergency scene. Testifies as a witness in court.  Reports equipment malfunctions and performs minor maintenance and repair.

Books, fingerprints, and photographs prisoners; oversees well being of individuals in custody; follows and maintains detention facility rules and procedures.  Transports individuals to and from detention facility.

Provides information to public in accordance with public reporting regulations. Engages in community policing, relationship building, and problem-solving. Embraces ongoing training to maintain professional competence. Builds trust with citizen groups.  Acts as department representative providing formal and informal presentations on relevant issues to community groups, schools, etc.

Other Job Functions: May act in specialty assignments including Community Resource, School Resource, Drug Task Force or Safe Neighborhoods Team.  May serve as juvenile officer, performing a full range of preventative and investigative duties. May perform duty as a detective.

Each employee is expected to continually strive to bring shared values to life through our Excellence Through People organizational culture. ETP values include: committing to continuous improvement; inspiring creativity and innovation; being customer driven; making data-driven decisions; committing to diversity, equity and inclusion; championing employee involvement; striving for excellence; having fiscal stewardship; acting with honesty and integrity; exhibiting leadership; choosing a positive attitude; respecting one another; promoting safety and wellness; and cultivating teamwork. For leaders, this includes creating a work culture that brings these values to life. For all employees, this includes maintaining a Total City Perspective. The purpose of ETP is to deliver exceptional services to the public at the best price, and for employees to experience an enjoyable and stimulating work environment.



Education and Experience: Successful completion of high school, HiSet, or GED., PLUS 60 semester hours or 90 quarter hours in an accredited college or university in diversified academic subjects. Not to be included are technical or occupation courses; however, technical or community college credits will be considered if credits are in criminal justice, liberal arts, or a closely related field. Certification by a law enforcement academy may not substitute for any course credit.

Licenses and Certificates: Must obtain a valid State of Iowa drivers license upon appointment. Must demonstrate a safe and conscientious regard for traffic laws. Must meet all state standards for Peace Officer certification, complete the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy, and achieve certification within one year of appointment. Must exceed Iowa Law Enforcement Academy fitness testing standards to be eligible for hire; must complete ILEA based testing biannually.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities Necessary to Perform Essential Functions:

Some knowledge of the purpose of law enforcement and criminal justice system.

Working skill in observing factual situations analytically and objectively and to record them clearly and completely; working skill in verbal and written communication; some skill in following strict routines.

Ability to effectively communicate and work with a wide variety people and personalities. Ability to maintain a strong and visible commitment to integrity and fairness. Working ability to react quickly and calmly in emergencies; working ability to understand and carry out oral and written instructions; working ability to handle situations firmly, courteously, tactfully, and impartially; working ability to develop proficiency in the use of firearms and in the operation of motor vehicles and computer applications; working ability to use good judgment in evaluating situations, problem-solving and making sound decisions; working ability to gather, assemble, analyze, and evaluate facts and evidence and to draw sound conclusions; some ability to obtain valid information by interview and interrogation.

Supplemental Information

Physical & Environmental Characteristics

Required Physical Activities: Climbing, balancing, stooping, kneeling, crouching, crawling, reaching, standing, walking, pushing, pulling, lifting, grasping, feeling, talking, hearing, repetitive motions, manual dexterity, shooting, restraining prisoners, defensive tactics.

Physical Characteristics of Work: Work requires exerting a negligible amount of force constantly; up to 20 pound of force frequently; and in excess of 50 pounds occasionally to move objects. Must be able to perform physical tasks under stressful conditions.

Vision Requirements: Uncorrected vision of not less than 20/100 in both eyes, correctable to 20/20; vision cannot be inhibited by color blindness or night blindness.

Environmental Conditions: The worker may be exposed to both inside and outside environmental conditions; extreme heat (above 100 degrees) or cold (below 32 degrees) for periods of more than one hour; noise; vibration; atmospheric conditions that affect the respiratory system (i.e. dust, fumes, gasses, odors); and hazards.

Equipment Essential to the Job: Patrol car, 2-way radio, base radio, portable radio, mobile telephones, keys, unlocking tools, radar/tuning forks, speedometer, emergency lighting, various firearms and other weapons, safety/locking devices, impact weapon, tear gas/launcher, chemical irritants, face mask, protective vest, handcuffs, flashlight, sirens, first aid kit, defibrillator, and resuscitator. Barricades, flares, noise meter, preliminary breath test, intoxilyzer, measurement devises/wheel, still camera, latex gloves and ticket books. Various computers, printers and related software. Telephone, paper forms, various types of recording equipment. Maps, headsets, alarm boards, fingerprint equipment, GPS, copy machine, warrants and warrant records, video monitors.

Other Equipment Used on the Job: Prisoner transport van, pickups, bicycle, taser, small equipment and tools, recording equipment, engraver, gun cleaning tools and equipment, latex or nylex gloves, various crime scene testing materials.

Other Supplemental Information

**For candidates who are currently enrolled in higher education courses and need these course credits to meet the minimum requirement in education for this recruitment, please ensure that you check with your educational institution that they will be able to verify your current status in those courses. Verification of passing these courses will be checked in the background process should you be given a contingent offer of employment.

**For candidates who indicate they have “some” higher education, we may request proof of number of passed credit hours prior to inviting you to participate in testing for this recruitment. Please be prepared to provide proof of passing 60 – 90 hour credits, per the defined minimum listed above, prior to agility testing.

Selection Process:

The selection process consists of an evaluation of education/experience, a physical agility test, POST written exam, hiring assessment, oral board interview, Chief of Police interview, an extensive background investigation (including criminal history, financial and employment verification, education verification, and driving record), polygraph, psychological exam (MMPI) and physical exam (including a drug test). Candidates must successfully pass each component to continue in the process. After each oral board interview date, those candidates receiving a 70% or higher score, will be certified to our Civil Service list for Police Officer. Finalists will also be required to sign a no tobacco usage pledge.

For further details on this process, please see the Join Ames PD webpage at Join Ames PD website .

The physical agility test and POST exam** will be conducted on February 24th and April 14th, 2023. These events will be by invitation only. Due to the large number of applicants, and the number of staff required to administer the tests, we are not able to make special arrangements for those unable to test on these dates. All candidates must pass a physical agility test in order to continue to the POST exam. Candidates may be allowed to retake the POST exam on the next scheduled testing date established by this recruitment. Currently the last testing date is April 14th, but this may be subject to change with notification to all eligible applicants.

** Any travel and lodging expenses for a candidate traveling to either of these events will not be reimbursed by the City of Ames.

Safety Precautions:

Currently, the City of Ames does not have a mask policy for fully vaccinated individuals for COVID-19. Should there be any changes to this policy prior to testing and interviews for this recruitment, we will notify all candidates prior to each event. We strongly encourage candidates who are not fully vaccinated for COVID-19 to wear their masks.

Residency Requirement

All employees governed by the PPME contract (which includes Police Officers) are required to reside within an area bordered by State Highway 65 on the east, County Road R-27 north of Boone and Des Moines River south of Highway 30 on the west, Story County line on the north, and Polk County Road F-22 on the south. Communities intersected by the borderlines shall be within the area. For further details of what area this includes, please view the Ames Employee Residency Map link here: MAP.

E-Verify Process:

The City of Ames participates in E-Verify and will provide the Social Security Administration (SSA) and, if necessary, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), with information from each applicant’s Form I-9 to confirm work authorization. All candidates who are offered a position with the City of Ames must complete Section 1 of Form I-9 along with the required proof of their right to work in the United States and proof of their identity on their first day of employment. Please be prepared to provide required documents on your first day of employment. For additional information regarding acceptable documents for this purpose, please contact Human Resources at 515-239-5199 or go to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services web page at: http://www.uscis.gov.

NOTE: Applicants with disabilities may submit requests for ADA testing or interview accommodations to the Human Resources Department prior to the test or interview.

The City of Ames is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, creed, age, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, ancestry, national origin, marital status, disability, or protected veteran status and will not be discriminated against. Inquiries can be directed to the Human Resources Department at 515-239-5199.