Cobb County, GA (CBS46) Several Cobb County residents packed a county commission meeting Tuesday night, demanding pay raises for police officers, firefighters and other first responders.
Some of the speakers told commissioners, this issue has reached a crisis point.
CBS46 is learning that in the Cobb County Police Department alone, there are 80 openings.
The shortage means some officers are responding to some dangerous situations without backup.
The county fire department has a similar situation, not enough firefighters to fully fill a response team.
The reason so many public safety personnel are leaving, according to supporters, is because they're getting higher paying jobs with better benefits in other counties.
Cobb County hasn't given public safety pay raises in years and Tuesday night, commissioners got an earful about it.
“The problem is over ten years old, and it is getting worse every week,” says Susan Hampton, a supporter of the raises. “Can we really afford to continue to kick this can down the road?”
The commission chairman said their concerns are warranted but there are a lot of pieces to move around in the budget to make this happen.
CBS46 will stay on top of this story as those community activists insist on getting results.