More than 70 officers have left the U.S. Capitol Police since the Jan. 6 insurrection, according to the department’s union, which said that a $1.9 billion supplemental funding package will not be enough to keep other officers from departing.
The police force has warned it will take years to hire and train more officers to recoup its ranks and that current officers are working longer hours to fill staffing gaps, according to a Politico report.
The bill now heads to the Senate, where it will need to win 60 votes before being sent to President Biden’s desk to be signed into law.
The bill gives the Capitol Police $43.9 million, $31.1 million of which is meant to go toward backfilling overtime until the department employs more officers.
“What keeps me awake at night is not the challenge of hiring and training more police officers, but keeping the officers we have right now,” Papathanasiou said in a statement according to Politico.
“We have many officers on the fence about whether to stay with this department.”
Papathanasiou said he is grateful for the supplemental funding but warned it doesn’t do enough to address the department’s staffing issues.
On Thursday, the House also passed a bill to set up a bipartisan, 9/11-style commission to investigate the riot.
After January 6, Trump was impeached for a second time by the House of Representatives for inciting the mob to attack the US house. He was subsequently cleared by the Senate.