Minnesota town sees entire police force resign due to wage dispute

"There's zero incentive to come out here to a small town," the department chief said.

A Minnesota town was left without its police force after all of its officers (including the police chief) resigned over a pay dispute. The city does not currently have any job applications for the department.

Goodhue, a small town of just over a thousand people, is facing a police crisis after Police Chief Josh Smith and the other members of the department resigned from their posts.

Smith explained that the city is offering lower salaries than other communities, which affects current staff and prevents others from wanting to apply. In fact, the police chief says he has been looking for people to join the force for a long time, but they have not had applicants since July.

"There's zero incentive to come out here to a small town, low pay, being on call, affecting your free time and everything else," Smith said.

Mayor taken by surprise

Goodhue Mayor Ellen Anderson Buck was reportedly surprised when members of the police department decided to resign. According to Anderson, she had already given officers a 5% raise. However, wages apparently remained lower than in other similar municipalities.

"At this point, there's no reason to really talk about pay increases since we no longer have a police force," Anderson said.

Despite that, the mayor assured that the city would not be left without police coverage and scheduled a meeting with the Goodhue County Sheriff's Office to discuss options for the short term.

City Councilman praised police force

Despite the officers' decision, a city councilor wanted to thank them for all their efforts. "I can probably speak for everyone when I say that they provided excellent safety and security to our community. And the small-town policing that they did," he said.