Ithaca Police Department


IPD Civil Service Exam for Entry-Level Police Officer applications due October 1, 2015




108 East Green Street Ithaca, New York 14850-5690

Telephone: 607-274-6539

Fax: 607-274-6574






Application Fee:

$15.00 non-refundable fee for Tompkins County residents.

$75.00 non-refundable fee for residents of all other counties.

The fee is waived for City of Ithaca residents.  The fee may also be waived for candidates who are unemployed and primarily responsible for the support of a household, or who are receiving public assistance.


Examination Date: November 14, 2015

Application Deadline: October 1, 2015

Who May Apply: Residents of Tompkins County and its contiguous counties.  Affidavits of Residence with supporting documentation must be filed with the application by the application deadline of October 1, 2015.


APPLICATION FEE: Tompkins County residents must pay a non-refundable $15.00 application fee at the time of application.  Residents of all other counties must pay a non-refundable $75.00 application fee at the time of application.  Application fees must be paid by check or money order payable to the “City of Ithaca”. Please be sure to include your name and examination number on your check or money order.  We do not accept cash.  Be sure to compare your qualifications carefully with the requirements listed on this announcement, including the residency and age requirements.  No refunds will be made if your application is disapproved, if you fail to appear for the exam, or if you fail the exam.  Applications submitted without the required fee or waiver request will be disapproved. A check that is returned due to insufficient funds may result in the disapproval of your application and further service charges.


APPLICATION FEE WAIVER:  The application fee will be waived for all residents of the City of Ithaca, provided that you submit a “Request for Application Fee Waiver” with your application.  The application fee will also be waived for applicants who are unemployed and primarily responsible for the support of a household, eligible for Medicaid, receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments or Public Assistance (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families/Family Assistance or Safety Net Assistance), or certified as eligible for the Job Training Partnership Act/Workforce Investment Act through a State or local social service agency, provided that you submit a “Request for Application Fee Waiver” with your application.  All requests for application fee waivers are subject to verification.


Police Officer Exam No. 68-102


ACCEPTANCE OF APPLICATIONS: Applications must be received by the City of Ithaca Human Resources Department no later than 4:30 PM EST on the last filing date indicated above.  Postmarks are not accepted.  All applications must be original applications.   We do not accept faxed applications, electronic applications or photocopies of applications.


APPLICATION MATERIALS REQUIRED: An original City of Ithaca application, copy of high school transcript or GED, driver license, Affidavit of Residence with supporting documentation, and application fee or waiver.


VACANCIES: Currently, there are four (4) vacancies in the City of Ithaca Police Department. The eligible list established as a result of this examination may be used to fill these vacancies and any future vacancies that may occur during the life of the eligible list.


RESIDENCY: Candidates must be legal residents of either Tompkins County or one of its six (6) contiguous counties (Cayuga, Chemung, Cortland, Schuyler, Seneca or Tioga) at least one month prior to the date of the examination. Preference in certification may be given to candidates who are residents of the municipality in which appointment is to be made, provided that the candidate is a resident of such municipality at the time of examination and remains a resident of such municipality continuously thereafter, up to and including the dates of certification and appointment.




DISTINGUISHING FEATURES OF THE CLASS: The incumbent has personal responsibility in an assigned district during a specific period for the enforcement of all laws and ordinances and the protection of lives and property.  The work consists primarily of routine patrol tasks.  Assists in the investigation of criminal offenses and the apprehension of criminals.  There is considerable independent responsibility for the exercise of sound judgment in emergency situations.  However, ordinary procedures and special assignments are usually carried out under immediate supervision. Does related work as required.


MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS: Graduation from high school or possession of a high school equivalency diploma.  If you expect to complete the educational requirement within six (6) months of the date of examination, you can be admitted to this examination.  If successful on the examination, you will not be certified for appointment until you have submitted proof of completion of the requirements to the Civil Service Commission.  Proof must be submitted within eight months of the date of examination.  Failure to do so will result in removal of your name from the eligible list.


SPECIAL REQUIREMENT: Possession of a valid New York State Class D driver license or a valid driver license equivalent to a New York State Class D driver license at the time of appointment and maintenance of said license for the duration of employment.



1. Candidates must meet all requirements for the appointment of Police Officers which are prescribed in Section 58 of the NYS Civil Service Law, including the following: Police Officer Exam No. 68-102


AGE: Candidates must not yet have reached age thirty-five (35) as of the date of the written examination.  There is no minimum age requirement for participation in the exam, but eligibility for appointment as a Police Officer does not begin until a candidate reaches age twenty (20).  Candidates who reach their thirty-fifth (35th) birthday on or before the date of the written examination are not qualified.  *Time spent on military duty or terminal leave,

not exceeding a total of six (6) years, may be subtracted from the age of any applicant who has passed his or her thirty-fifth birthday, as provided for in Section 243.10(a) of New York State Military Law.  * Please note that the age requirements pertain to the candidate’s age on the date on which the candidate takes the written examination.  Candidates who may be impacted by the maximum age requirement and who are requesting an alternate test date (for active military duty, Sabbath observance or for an alternate test date situation which meets the conditions of this agency's alternate test date policy) are advised to contact the City of Ithaca Human Resources/Civil Service Department at 607-274-6539 to discuss their request.


MEDICAL REQUIREMENTS: Candidates must meet the medical standards prescribed by the New York State Municipal Police Training Council.  Employment offers will be conditional upon the successful completion of the medical examination.  Copies of the medical standards are available from the Office of Human Resources/Civil Service – 108 East Green Street, Ithaca, NY 14850 607-274-6539.


PHYSICAL FITNESS TEST: All prospective Police Officers are required to pass the Physical Fitness Test prescribed by the New York State Municipal Police Training Council.  Candidates may be invited to participate in the Physical Fitness Test in order of the scores they achieve on the written test.  The City of Ithaca reserves the right to administer the Physical Fitness Test to only as many candidates as are needed to fill available vacancies.  Before a candidate participates in the Physical Fitness Test, the candidate may be required to provide a physician’s certification authorizing the candidate to participate in the Physical Fitness Test.  A full description of the Physical Fitness Test is available from the Office of Human Resources/Civil Service – 108 East Green Street, Ithaca, NY 14850 607-274-6539.  Candidates who fail the Physical Fitness Test will be removed from the eligible list.  No retests will be offered. 


2. Candidates must meet all requirements for the appointment of Public Officers which are prescribed in Sections 3 and Section 30 of the NYS Public Officer Law, including the following:

CRIMINAL RECORD: Conviction of a felony will bar candidates from appointment, and conviction of a misdemeanor may bar candidates from appointment.

CITIZENSHIP: Candidates must be a United States Citizen at the time of appointment.


BACKGROUND INVESTIGATION: Applicants may be required to undergo a State and national criminal history background investigation, which will include a fingerprint check, to determine suitability for appointment. Failure to meet the standards for the background investigation may result in disqualification.



The written examination will cover knowledge, skills and/or abilities in such areas as:

1. Applying written information (rules, regulations, policies, procedures, directives, etc.) in police situations.  These questions test for the ability to apply written rules in given situations similar to those typically experienced by police officers.

2. Memory for facts and information

These questions test for the ability to remember facts and information presented in written form.  You will be given 5 minutes to read and study the information in the Memory Booklet.  After the 5 minute period, the Memory Booklet will be taken away.  You will then be required to answer questions about the material that was presented in the Memory Booklet.

3. Reading, understanding and interpreting written information.  These questions test for the ability to read, understand, and interpret the kinds of written information that police officers are required to read during their formal training period and on the job.

4. Preparing written material in a police setting.  These questions test for the ability to prepare the types of reports that police officers write.  You will be presented with a page of notes followed by several questions. Each question will consist of four restatements of the information given in the notes.  From each set of four, you must choose the version that presents the information most clearly and accurately.  The rating key for this examination will be established by the New York State Civil Service Commission prior to the date of the test, upon recommendation of a committee of police experts who will review all the questions for appropriateness and the key answers for correctness.  There will be no review of the questions by candidates.  This committee was selected with the assistance and endorsement of the Police Conference of New York, Inc., the New York State Association of PBA's, Inc., and the New York State Association of Chiefs of Police, Inc.  A Guide for the Written Test for Police Entrance is available at the New York State website:

Candidates not having access to a computer or the internet may request copy of the test guide from the municipal civil service office conducting this examination using the contact information found elsewhere on this announcement.  NOTE: Most Civil Service examinations do not require the use of a quiet, hand-held calculator or slide rule; however, candidates have the option of bringing a battery-operated or solar-powered calculator to the test room unless specifically notified that their use is prohibited.  Devices with typewriter keyboards, spell checkers, Personal Digital Assistants, Address Books, Language Police Officer Exam No. 68-102.  Translators, Dictionaries, or any similar devices are prohibited. USE OF CALCULATORS IS PROHIBITED FOR THIS EXAM.



Applicants whose religious beliefs or military service prevent their taking examinations on the scheduled date and candidates with disabilities who require special accommodations to take the test should indicate the need for special arrangements on their application.  Candidates who are called to military service after filing an application should send requests for an alternate test date to the City of Ithaca Human Resources/Civil Service Department before the test date.  Military Service Members: If you apply for an examination during the filing period but are on active military duty on the date the examination is scheduled, you may request a military makeup examination.  Contact the City of Ithaca Human Resources/Civil Service Department for more information.  If you are on active duty or discharged after the filing period has begun, you may apply for the examination up to ten days before the test date.  SECTION 23.2 STATEMENT: This examination will be prepared and rated in accordance with Section 23(2) of the Civil Service Law.  The provisions of New York State Civil Service Law, Rules and Regulations dealing with the preparation and rating of examinations will apply to this examination.


APPLICATIONS MAY BE OBTAINED: at the City of Ithaca Human Resources/Civil Service Department - 108 East Green Street, Ithaca NY 14850.  Applications may also be downloaded from the City of Ithaca Human Resources Department webpage at 


TIME AND PLACE OF THE EXAMINATION: Approved candidates will be notified by mail regarding the time and place of the examination. If notice of approval or disapproval is not received three (3) days prior to the exam date, please call the City of Ithaca Human Resources/Civil Service Department at 607-274-6539.


MULTIPLE EXAMINATIONS SCHEDULED FOR THE SAME DAY: If you have applied to take a written test announced by either one or several local jurisdictions (county, town, city) scheduled to be held on the same test date as this written test, you must notify each of the local jurisdictions no later than two weeks before the test date, so they can make arrangements for taking all tests at one test site. All examinations for positions in State government will be held at a State examination center.


VETERAN'S CREDIT: Veterans or disabled veterans who are eligible for additional credit must submit an application for veteran's credit with their application for examination or at any time between the dates of their application for examination and the date of the establishment of the resulting eligible list. Applications for veteran's credit are available from this office. Veteran's credits can only be added to a passing score on the examination.  Effective January 1, 1998, the State Constitution was amended to permit a candidate currently in the armed forces to apply for and be conditionally granted veteran's credit in examinations.  Any candidate who applies for such credit must provide proof of military status to receive the conditional credit.  No credit may be granted after the establishment of the list.  It is the responsibility of the candidate to provide appropriate documentary proof indicating that the service was in time of war, as defined in Section 85 of Civil Service Law, and that the candidate received an honorable discharge or was released under honorable conditions in order to be certified at a score including veteran's credits.


ADDITIONAL CREDIT FOR CHILDREN OF FIREFIGHTERS AND POLICE OFFICERS KILLED IN THE LINE OF DUTY: In conformance with section 85-a of the Civil Service Law, children of firefighters and police officers killed in the line of duty shall be entitled to receive an additional ten points in a competitive examination for original appointment in the same municipality in which his or her parent has served.  If you are qualified to participate in this examination and are a child of a firefighter or police officer killed in the line of duty in this municipality, please inform this office of this matter when you submit your application for examination. A candidate claiming such credit has a minimum of two months from the application deadline to provide the necessary documentation to verify additional credit eligibility. However, no credit may be added after the eligible list has been established.



1. Falsification of any part of the "Application for Employment" will result in disqualification.

2. Applicants must answer every question on the application form and make sure that the application is complete in all respects. Incomplete applications will be disapproved.

3. Candidates who wish to take more than one examination must complete the "Application for Employment" for each examination.  If you are cross-filing for another examination to be held on the same date, please indicate this on the application and specify the examination title and number, and the jurisdiction offering the other examination.

4. Appointments from an eligible list must be made from the top three candidates willing to accept appointment. The duration of an eligible list may be fixed for a minimum period of one (1) year and a maximum period of four (4) years.

5. It is the responsibility of the candidate to notify the City of Ithaca Human Resources/Civil Service Department of any change in address. No attempt will be made to locate candidates who have moved.


The City of Ithaca is an equal opportunity employer with a commitment to workforce diversification.

Working to Keep Our Community Safe
A strong emphasis is placed on community policing, and we value the partnerships we have established with other law enforcement agencies, service organizations, businesses, and our local residents. We're proud of the fact that Ithaca was ranked as the the number 1 most secure city in the United States with a population under 150,000, as well as having been ranked number 3 for lowest metropolitan crime rate in the country.
We ask you to join us in our mission to keep Ithaca a safe and healthy community.

Please visit the IPD Facebook page for more information on the vital role that the Ithaca Police Department serves in helping to keep Ithaca a beautiful and vibrant place to live, work, and visit.

The Chief of Police, and police officers possess the powers and authority provided in the Criminal Procedure Law and all other applicable statutes of New York State. They also perform duties prescribed by the City of Ithaca Charter for the preservation of public peace, the care of city property, and the enforcement of the police regulations and municipal ordinances of the city. The chief has the authority to designate persons employed by the Police Department other than police officers who will have the authority to regulate traffic.

The mission of the Ithaca Police Department is to enhance the quality of life in our community by working cooperatively with the public and within the framework of the U.S. Constitution. To enforce the law, preserve the peace, reduce fear, and provide for a safe environment for all of our citizens.