Law Enforcement Officer Position

Bellingham Police Department - Police Officer



The information herein is provided by the respective agency and is only as accurate and as up-to-date as the agency representative(s) update this information. PST is not responsible for the veracity of this data as it is provided directly from the agency. It is ultimately the applicant's responsibility to verify any information about the agency with the agency.

Bellingham Police Department - Police Officer

Last updated on May 04, 2020

Testing Deadline: June 19, 2020.

Important Information

The next testing deadline with Bellingham Police Department is June 19, 2020. Candidates must complete testing between March 14, 2020 and June 19, 2020.


Applicants must complete the written exam through Public Safety Testing prior to the testing deadline. If you are unable to complete the Physical Ability Test prior to the testing deadline, you will have to complete and pass the Physical Ability Test at a later date in order to continue in this selection process. The City of Bellingham will invite the top scoring candidates via email to complete a City of Bellingham Employment Application.

The City of Bellingham is a classified Civil Service System using ranked eligibility lists developed from test scores to select final candidates for hire. 

Qualified candidates will be placed on a ranked eligibility list based on the written exam score. The top scoring 15 candidates or the top 25%, whichever is greater, will be referred to the Department for final assessment.

Please refer to the City of Bellingham employment website for more information and fill out a job interest alert to receive email notification with the most recent information on public safety career opportunities.

Community Information

On the shores of Bellingham Bay with Mount Baker as its backdrop, Bellingham is the last major city before the Washington coastline meets the Canadian border. The City of Bellingham, which serves as the county seat of Whatcom County, is at the center of a uniquely picturesque area offering a rich variety of recreational, cultural, educational and economic activities.

Department Information

Due to the unique character of our City, the beauty of the surrounding landscape and diverse opportunities within our agency, working at the Bellingham Police Department offers an unmatched quality of life for those seeking a career in law enforcement.

Regardless of where your career takes you at BPD, officers hired with our department start off at the Basic Law Enforcement Academy in Burien, Washington. After graduating from the academy, new officers returning to Bellingham start the Field Training program while assigned to the patrol division. Since 2005, the patrol division has utilized a schedule based on a 10.7 hour work day. The work week is 5 days long and officers enjoy rotating weekends of 4 or 5 days off at a time.

Once the necessary experience has been gained while working on patrol, officers have the opportunity to apply for a variety of specialty units within the department. See our About Us section for details. Whether you find yourself riding our local trails as a bike officer, conducting surveillance in our Special Investigations Unit, or tracking down suspects with your K-9 partner, each position has qualities that appeal to a wide range of personalities and interests. In addition to unique job descriptions of each specialty unit, the hours and shifts differ as well which can provide officers with a healthy change of pace throughout their career.

With approximately 120 commissioned officers, our department offers innovative training, modern equipment and diverse specialty units often associated with larger departments. At the same time our employees enjoy benefits felt at many smaller departments in terms of being a close-knit work group where every face becomes familiar over time. If being part of a team that makes a positive impact in the community sounds appealing, then we encourage you to seek out employment opportunities at our department.

Area Information

County: Whatcom
Population: 91,800
# of Staff: Over 100 commissioned officers

Hiring Status

The deadline to test for the next hiring cycle is June 19, 2020.

Qualified candidates will be placed on a ranked eligibility register based on the written exam score. The top scoring 15 candidates or the top 25%, whichever is greater, will be referred to the appointing authority for final assessment.

The eligibility register will be valid for two months. 

Salary Information

Recruit salary is $5,408 per month. Upon entry to the Basic Law Enforcement Academy, salary is $5,949 per month. Upon successful completion of the Basic Law Enforcement Academy, the salary range for a Full Performance Police Officer is $5,949/month - $7,654/month. This position is represented by a union.

Benefit Information

An extensive benefit package is provided, including medical, dental, vision and prescription drug coverage for employee, spouse and dependents. The state-wide Washington Law Enforcement and Firefighters Pension Plan (LEOFF) provides retirement benefits.

Bellingham Police Department - Police Officer Requirements

Category Requirement Required at time of...
    Test Hire
Minimum Age 21 years of age.
US Citizen/Lawful Permanent Resident US Citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident.
Washington State residency by time of hire.
High School Grad/ GED Yes
Driver's License Required Valid Washington State driver's license by time of hire and good driving record. A three year driving abstract must be submitted prior to hire, with periodic submission of driving abstract per City policy.
Felony Conviction(s) as an Adult No record of felony convictions.
Felony Conviction(s) as a Juvenile Felony convictions as a juvenile and misdemeanor convictions will be reviewed. A misdemeanor conviction will not necessarily disqualify and applicant, but offenses, by their nature and recentness, may reveal a lack of specific qualifications for this position.
Ability to Read & Write the English Language Yes
Vision Requirements Uncorrected vision in either eye of 20/100 or better, vision able to be corrected to 20/20 in better eye and 20/30 in lesser eye. Visual acuity including closeness, distance, color, peripheral and depth perception, with the ability to adjust focus and to read a computer screen and typewritten page.
College Requirement Associate's Degree or two years (90 quarter hours/60 semester hours) of general education course work toward a degree at an accredited college or university.
Other Tattoos on the face, neck, hands, fingers, tongue, scalp or ears are prohibited. At no time while on duty or representing the Department in any capacity, shall any offensive tattoo or body art be visible. Tattoos that consist of religious or political symbolism shall not be visible while on duty.

Possession of, or ability to obtain, Red Cross certification for Infant/Child and Adult CPR and Standard First Aid within two years of hire.
Multiple Scores from Same Applicant We only consider the most recent score
Request/ Access Scores Quarterly – every July, October, January, & April. The next testing deadline to complete the written and physical ability test is by January 18, 2019.

Contact Information

Bellingham Police Department - Police Officer

505 Grand Avenue
Bellingham, WA 98225 Whatcom County


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