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Ranking system changed to motivate correctional officers

Special to the Union Leader

March 07. 2013 12:48AM

OSSIPEE - The Carroll County House of Corrections has implemented a new ranking system for its officers.

According to Carroll County HOC Superintendent Jason Johnson, the new ranking system is intended to promote professional growth for staff. Under the former system, correctional personnel could only move up in rank when a supervisor retired or resigned, thereby limiting movement, he said.

The former system was set up with the following ranks: superintendent, captain, lieutenant, sergeant, specialist and correctional officer. This year, the staff developed a ranking system similar to that of the U. S. military whereby correctional officers work to meet objective criteria and as a result are rewarded with a new rank.

According to Johnson, the system has no fiscal impact and was designed to keep staff motivated in achieving goals. Under the new system, the rank structure is: superintendent, captain, lieutenant, sergeant, corporal, specialist, officer first class, certified correctional officer, correctional officer and probationary correctional officer.

According to the description of rank criteria, a probation officer is a new hire who is still on the required six-month probation period. These officers will be required to pass a fitness test, an oral board and on-the-job training.

One step up is a correctional officer. This rank has completed the required probationary period, passed the physical fitness test and successfully performed at an oral board. A correctional officer is required to attend and successfully complete the first New Hampshire County of Corrections Academy made available to him/her. Probationary correctional officers and correctional officers wear no rank insignia on his/her uniform.

Next step up is the certified correctional officer; these officers wear the rank of CO-2. A certified correctional officer has met all of the requirements of a basic correctional officer and has successfully completed the New Hampshire County of Corrections Academy.

Seniority and education lead to officer first class. This rank is CO-3. Officers are expected to have a minimum of two years of continuous service at the Carroll County Department of Corrections, and will be expected to have completed at lease one of the following requirements and be actively pursuing the completion of two of the other requirements: associates degree in a law enforcement related field; state certification as a field training officer; instructor development; officer-in-Ccharge; baton instructor; active member of the Carroll County Department of Corrections Transport Team; taser instructor; Oleoresin Capsicum instructor; or defensive tactics instructor.

A specialist wears the rank of Specialist CO-4. Requirements for this rank include two years of continuous service at the Carroll County DOC, FTO certification, completed Instructor Development and one of the requirements similar to the CO-3 standards.

The rank of corporal requires a minimum of three years of continuous service at the Carroll County DOC, completion of the officer-in-charge (OIC) training, and a passing score on an oral board.

Crime, law and justice Labor Public Safety Ossipee

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