CHICAGO (AP) - The Illinois State Police have seen a slow but steady decline in their numbers, leaving many to wonder if there are enough troopers to patrol roads, investigate highway shootings and oversee the concealed-carry gun program.
Data from the state police shows the number of troopers has dropped by almost 20% over the past 20 years. Spending cuts, retirements, new duties and a recent state budget stalemate have all been factors.
The Chicago Tribune reports there are efforts being made to rebuild the force, with Gov. J.B. Pritzker proposing $7 million to train two new cadet classes at the police academy.
The next class of trainees is scheduled to start training Sunday at the academy in Springfield.