Biloxi Police Department looking for qualified applicants

The Biloxi Police Department is looking for applicants – entry level or those with experience – to help fill about a dozen vacancies including those of pending retiring veteran officers.

“We are looking for individuals that possess dedication, loyalty and honesty as foremost qualities,” Police Chief John Miller said.  “We believe ourselves to be one of the top agencies in the state and want people of that caliber.”

Interested individuals must be at least 21 years of age, have a high school diploma or GED equivalent, be eligible to work in the United States, be a registered voter of the residing county, have and maintain a valid driver’s license and must be insurable by the city’s insurance company. The positions have annual pay between $36,193 to $42,262 and an enviable benefits package. 

“Law enforcement can be a very rewarding career,” Miller said.  “There is more to it than just putting on a badge and a gun. There is a lot of advanced technology in the police world and a lot of training.”

In fact, Miller adds that an officer with five years of experience with Biloxi receives extensive training that would be equivalent in an academic setting to an individual with a master’s degree.

The department is currently looking to fill nearly a dozen positions with entry level officers and so-called “lateral transfers,” which are officers with at least three years of experience.

Applicants must complete a public safety application, before being eligible for the physical agility and written test, a background check, a psychological test, and an oral interview. 

Applicants requesting a lateral hire must submit the public safety application and a written request for a transfer, proof of successful completion of a Civil Service examination from employer, proof of meeting Mississippi Minimum Standards, and proof of three years of law enforcement experience.
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DEQ seeks more interest in needle-disposal program

Those in Biloxi who use syringes for injections to fight diabetes, allergies, arthritis or other ailments have embraced a state DEQ program that helps properly dispose of the used needles, but state says more can be done.

About 100,000 syringes have been disposed of in Biloxi in the past seven years in a program where the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality has set up a statewide network of drop off points at pharmacies and retirement homes. The state wants to make sure the used syringes do not find their way into home trash and eventually to the curb in residential streets, where they can cause injury to garbage collection employees or the public.

“While 100,000 syringes may sound like a lot, it’s only a fraction of what’s being generated,” said Bill Barnett, who administers the free program for MDEQ. “Each year, about 90,000 people in Mississippi administer to themselves about 30 million injections for medical issues such as diabetes, allergies, HIV or arthritis. Our hope is that more people will learn about this option for disposal and begin using it.  It really is very convenient, and with no costs involved to the user, why wouldn’t someone use the service?”

Under the DEQ program, used needles, or “sharps,” can be dropped off in the pharmacy section of participating drug stores, but they must be enclosed in a sharps container or an empty consumer products container made of heavy duty plastic with a screw-top lid. The sharps are picked up periodically by biomedical waste disposal companies and disposed of in the safe manner.

The DEQ has 361 drop-off locations throughout the state, including five pharmacies in Biloxi: Burnham Drugs, Ladner Drugs, Medical Arts Pharmacy, Walgreens, and Woolmarket Pharmacy.  Biloxi retirement homes offering service to their residents are Santa Maria del Mar, Gabriel Manor Apartments, and Gulf Shores Adult Day Care. Additionally, Grace HealthCare, a medical supply business in Biloxi, offers it to their customers and clients.

The DEQ’s program is unique, Barnett said: “While we got the basic idea from the state of Wisconsin, we believe ours is the only program in the country that is totally sponsored by the state and does not include a user fee. I am unaware of another state in the South that is even attempting to address this issue.”
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News and notes: weekly report, traffic update, Thanksgiving dinner

The week in review: Ever wonder how busy the Biloxi Police and Fire departments, and the Community Development and Engineering departments are in a given week? You can find out each week in the Weekly Report, a compilation of police and fire responses, building permits issued, and the status of major public works. To see the week-by-week archive of reports, including the one for last week, click here.

Traffic update:  Each weekday the Public Works Department publishes an online report on how major streets and drainage projects are impacting the flow of traffic.  To see today’s report, click here.

Special Needs Thanksgiving dinner: More than 200 individuals and volunteers turned out Sunday afternoon for the Parks & Recreation Department’s annual Special Needs Thanksgiving Dinner at the Donal M. Snyder Sr. Community Center. To see images from the affair, click here


News and notes: Video bonus 

House fire:  Biloxi firefighters responded to a house fire Friday evening on Cove Drive. The cause of the fire is still under investigation but the occupant of the home reported that they had been grilling in the backyard earlier in the afternoon.  To see images and video of the fire posted on the Biloxi Fire Department’s Facebook page, click here

Social media and special events:  Biloxi Police Chief John Miller was on WLOX News This Week on Sunday morning to discuss how Facebook and social media assist in solving crimes, but his nine-minute segment shed light on why the Gilich administration is pushing for a special events ordinance. To see the Miller segment, click here

Carrying the Biloxi message to Washington: Mayor Andrew “FoFo” Gilich and Councilmember Felix Gines were in Washington D.C. last week, meeting with the Mississippi Congressional delegation and others to discuss the importance of several Biloxi initiatives. To see Councilman Gines’s recap of the trip and the issues, click here