Police Laterals


$25,000 lateral police officer hiring bonus! 

Take-home electric vehicle program! 

Thank you for your interest in joining our team as a lateral police officer!

The Kirkland Police Department seeks law enforcement professionals of the highest caliber to help achieve our mission, which is to "protect and serve our community with honor, integrity and courage."

Working for the Kirkland Police Department offers an unparalleled opportunity to be an integral part of a forward-thinking department that prioritizes community policing, the safety of our students, crime reduction and the proactive protection of our community members. We pride ourselves on our professionalism, our strong sense of teamwork and our ability to respond and adapt to our community’s needs.



  • Salary & Benefits

    The City of Kirkland Police Department is one of the best-paid departments in the State of Washington, with excellent benefits and generous incentives. Currently, we offer a $25,000 hiring bonus to new lateral police officers! The $25,000 hiring bonus is payable in three (3) separate installments:

    • $5,000 to be paid on the first paycheck following the officer's hire.
    • $10,000 to be paid after successful completion of the field training program.
    • $10,000 to be paid upon successful completion of the probationary period.

    Rates and incentives for 2024 are:


    Lateral Patrol Officer 1 Year Prior Experience  Lateral Patrol Officer 2-3 Years Prior Experience    Lateral Patrol Officer 4 or More Years Prior Experience  
    $7,780.85 $8,423.72 $8,898.84


    AA Degree     BA/BS Degree     Graduate Degree    
     2.0% 4.0%  4.5% 


    Detective     Traffic Officer    K-9 Handler    Pro-Act Officer  

    Training Officer, 
    SRO, NRO

     5.0% 4.0% 4.0% 3.0% 2.0%


    Firearms Instructor    Defensive Tactics

    SWAT (SRT or HNT)
    Less Lethal Instructor
     2.0% 2.0% 2.0% 2.0%




    Physical Fitness Incentive*   Accreditation Incentive   Night Shift Differential**  
     1.0% 1.0% 1.0%

     Employees shall be eligible for a physical fitness incentive as provided in the Kirkland Police Guild Labor Agreement.

    **NOTE: A premium of 1 percent will be added to the monthly rate of pay for employees who are assigned to the patrol night shift.


    YRS 5-9   YRS 10-14  
    YRS 15-19  
    YRS 20-24  
     25 YRS  
     2.5% 4.0% 6.0% 8.0% 9.0%


    *NOTE: Officers hired as Lateral Officers will receive credit for years of service as commissioned Police Officers towards their longevity years of service calculation.


    1 YR   YRS 2-4   YRS 5-7  
    YRS 8-10  
    YRS 11-13  
    YRS 14-16  
    YRS 17-19  20 YRS
     104 hrs  114 hrs 138 hrs 146 hrs 154 hrs 170 hrs 186 hrs 202 hrs


    *NOTE: Officers hired as Lateral Officers will receive credit for years of service as commissioned Police Officers towards their vacation accrual level.


    Thirteen days per year. In addition, employees who actually work Martin Luther King Day, Memorial Day, Juneteenth, Independence Day, Labor Day, Veterans Day, Presidents Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas and New Year's Day are paid at a rate of one and one-half times the employee's hourly rate.


    Employees now can cash out holiday time twice per year.


    The City pays the full premium cost of medical/dental/vision plans for the employee and family under the City of Kirkland self-insured HDHP Plan or Kaiser Permanente. Flexible Medical Spending and Retirement Medical accounts are available. Retirees may now purchase health insurance through the City’s plan or Kaiser Permanente at a retiree rate.


    Each officer is completely outfitted upon appointment and is provided replacements as needed. Uniform cleaning is provided free of charge.



    Law Enforcement Officers and Firefighters State Retirement Plan II (LEOFF II) is the current retirement system. Employees are eligible for vested retirement after three years of service and attainment of age 53, the amount equaling two percent of the final average salary for each year of service. The City's employees elected to withdraw from the Social Security system and invest in the Municipal Employee's Benefit Trust Fund (MEBT), which matches and exceeds the benefits under Social Security. Employee contributions are matched by the City. Upon retirement or separation, the employee is allowed to collect all of his/her trust fund contributions, plus the vested portion of the City's contribution. After three years, the employee is fully vested in the City's matching contribution.

    Here is the formula we will use to calculate your monthly benefit: Service credit months ÷ 12 x 2% x Final Average Salary* = Monthly Benefit * Average your monthly salary from the highest-paid 60 consecutive months in which you earned service credit. Usually, this is your last 60 months of service.


    The City provides life insurance for the officer at a benefit of two times the officer salary.


    Both entry level and lateral officers will initially be assigned to Patrol as a uniformed officer, handling calls for service and conducting routine patrol functions. After two years in Patrol, officers will be eligible to test for other assignments.

    These assignments include:

    • Traffic
    • Detectives
    • School Resource Officer (SRO)
    • K-9
    • Neighborhood Resource Officer (NRO)

    Additionally, officers can be part of special cadres responsible for training and other police functions such as:

    • Firearms Instructor
    • Less Lethal Instructor
    • EVOC Instructor (Emergency Vehicle Operation and Control)
    • Honor Guard
    • Defensive Tactics Instructor
    • Hostage Negotiation Team (HNT)
    • Special Response Team (SRT)
    • Police Training Officer (PTO)



    Physical Fitness Test

    The Physical Ability Test standards are as follows:

    • Push-Ups:  20 push-ups in 90 seconds
    • Sit-Ups:  25 sit-ups in 90 seconds
    • Squat Thrusts:  35 squat thrusts in 3 minutes


    Position Qualifications

    Lateral (Experienced police officer) - Must have successfully completed an accredited Police Basic Training Academy curriculum and have a minimum of 12 months full-time service within the last 36 months (prefer current) as a sworn municipal or county officer. Must be at least 21 years of age and have or be able to obtain a valid Washington State Driver's License. Applicant must be a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident. A lateral officer whose state certification is recognized by the WACJTC does not have to attend the basic academy. Out-of-state laterals do have to pass the WACJTC 80-hour equivalency academy. Lateral officers will be placed in an eight-week abbreviated Police Training Officers (PTO) program for field training. Lateral officers are on probation for twelve months after assignment to solo patrol.



    Position Disqualifiers

    The following are automatic disqualifiers - Applicants should not apply to our agency if they indicate any of the following:


    • One or more traffic crime convictions in last five years. (DWI, Suspended, Reckless, etc.)
    • Suspension of driver's license within past five years.
    • Applicant's driving record will be carefully reviewed.

    Drug Use

    • Illegal use of ANY controlled substance while employed in a criminal justice capacity.
    • Pattern of illegal use of prescription medication.
    • All illegal drug use will be closely scrutinized on a case by case basis.

    Criminal Activity

    • Any adult felony conviction.
    • Any misdemeanor or felony conviction while employed in a criminal justice capacity.
    • Adult misdemeanor convictions will be carefully reviewed.
    • Juvenile felony convictions will be carefully reviewed.
    • Been convicted of any crime under a domestic violence statue.
    • Sold drugs.


    • Been dishonorably discharged from the United States Armed Forces.
    • Lied during any stage of the hiring process.
    • Falsified his or her application, personal history questionnaire, or any other forms during hiring process.
    • Previous revocation or denial of any (CJTC/POST) certified status, or suspension of current CJTC/POST certified status.


    • Failure to pay income tax or child support.
    • Current credit accounts, or unresolved accounts in collection will be carefully reviewed.
    • Any conduct or pattern of behavior that would tend to disrupt, diminish or otherwise jeopardize public trust in the law enforcement profession.


    •  Exposed tattoos which can not be covered by a standard uniform of the day. Arm and leg tattoos may be approved by the Chief of Police after review by the Tattoo Approval Committee.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    How do I apply with your office?

    Lateral officers can apply online at City of Kirkland Lateral Police Officer


    How many positions are available?

    We maintain a continuous hiring list to draw from when openings occur. Please contact:

    Lieutenant, Lisa Brouelette





    How long must I be with the Kirkland Police Department before I can get a promotion or move to a specialty position?

    To be eligible for promotion to Corporal you need to have a minimum of three (3) years full time police experience as a commissioned police officer with the City of Kirkland. To be eligible for promotion to Sergeant you need a minimum of five (5) years full time experience as a commissioned police officer with four (4) years of service in Kirkland. You must be with the department for 2-3 years (depending on specialty assignment) before testing for specialty assignments. Officers may test for training cadres at any time after the probationary period.


    What are the schedules / shifts like for lateral officers?

    Must be available to work 10 hour rotating shifts. Patrol officers work four 10 hour shifts, followed by three days off. Officers work Monday - Thursday or Thursday - Sunday. Available shifts are days, swing, and nights, and are bid annually by seniority.


    Do laterals have to go through field training?

    All laterals (in-state and out-of-state) have to complete an abbreviated eight-week Police Training Officer (PTO) program. During the eight weeks, you will be teamed with two different training officers to learn the procedures and operations of the department.


    Must I live within a certain distance from the city?

    No. Officers live all over the Puget Sound area.

    For commissioned officers:

    To receive a electric commuter vehicle, you must live outside of Kirkland and the 5 surrounding cities, as well as at least 10 miles away from the Kirkland Justice Center. 

    If you live in Kirkland or one of the 5 surrounding cities and are 10 miles from the Kirkland Justice Center, a $500 per month premium is available.



    Do laterals have to attend a police academy?

    Out-of-state laterals do have to fulfill the requirements for the WACJTC Equivalency Academy. Officers will complete an 80-hour online instructional program and attend a three-day session at the academy. Lateral officers will be placed in an eight-week abbreviated Police Training Officers (PTO) program for field training.


    When should I apply?

    You can apply anytime after you have met the minimum requirements for the position. You may not apply in anticipation of meeting the minimum requirements sometime in the near future.


    How long does the background investigation take?

    Once a lateral applicant has completed the physical fitness test and oral interview with passing scores and is selected for a background investigation, the approximate time for the investigation is two months.


    What does the physical fitness test consist of?

    The Physical Ability Test standards are as follows:

    • Push-Ups:  20 push-ups in 90 seconds
    • Sit-Ups:  25 sit-ups in 90 seconds
    • Squat Thrusts:  35 squat thrusts in 3 minutes

    Find the complete information on the physical fitness testing website.


    What happens if I fail a portion of the testing process?

    An applicant may re-apply with the department after six months from their previous test date if they fail a portion of the testing. An applicant receiving a permanent disqualification from the testing process may not re-apply with the department.