LIHU‘E — Residents will have the opportunity to join one of the most highly sought-after civil-service jobs in the state, when the state Department of Land and Natural Resources accepts applications for 46 vacant Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement officer positions next month.
State DLNR DOCARE Chief Jason Redulla said successful applicants assigned to Kaua‘i can expect to police locations throughout the island and its surrounding waters.
“Their duties are going to run the full gamut of what DLNR does,” Redulla said this week. “In a typical day, an officer can be up in Koke‘e, enforcing our state park laws. On the same day, they can be down in Nawiliwili, enforcing our boating laws, and in a fish market in Kapa‘a doing fish-market checks. It really is a very broad and wide-ranging responsibility that these new guys will have.”
The slew of entry-level job openings follows a state hiring freeze occasioned by the coronavirus pandemic. During that time, the agency could not fill vacancies as they occurred.
DOCARE currently maintains 13 law-enforcement positions and two clerical positions on Kaua‘i.
Redulla declined to say how many of those spots are now empty, claiming his agency does not “want to tip (its) hand” to lawbreakers.
However, the upcoming officer hires will do more than replenish the island’s DOCARE force.
“I’ll just generally tell you this,” Redulla said. “Kaua‘i is getting a number of employees that will not only fill the vacant positions it had for a while, but it will also give it a substantial boost.”
The new class of officers will only be the second to include entry-level officers with no prior law-enforcement experience.
Until 2019, DOCARE only considered officer applicants with a background in police work, due to lack of an in-house training academy.
Now, nearly anyone can apply — and many folks will.
“We get calls daily at the department from people who are interested,” Redulla said. “We know that there’s going to be a huge amount of competition for these 46 positions.”
The officer announcements will be posted online at job.hawaii.gov/careers on Dec. 4 at midnight. Redulla urges candidates to read the announcements carefully to ensure they meet minimum requirements. He also recommends candidates act quickly because a given opening can close at any time, once application limits are reached.
When DOCARE last accepted entry-level officer applications, which was in 2019, all announcements closed in a matter of hours, Redulla said.
Successful applicants who pass the hiring process and accept offers of employment will attend DOCARE’s Recruit Training Academy in Honolulu, according to a DLNR press release.
Upon graduation, the new officers will continue their training in the Field Training Officer Program before being assigned to field patrol.
Scott Yunker, reporter, can be reached at 245-0437 or firstname.lastname@example.org.