Prior to the 2008 recession, the Police Department staffing rate was 2.06 commissioned officers per 1000 residents. When the recession hit, and the City's struggled with revenue, a number of cost saving measures were enacted, which included a citywide policy of not replacing employees lost to attrition. As the City's finances recovered slowly over the ensuing years, population growth continued nearly unaffected. These two factors left the department critically understaffed, putting the community and its officers at risk.
According to the US Department of Justice's publication Crime in the United States 2016, the average number of commissioned officers across the nation is 2.4 per 1000 residents, with the average for cities between 11,000 and 24,999 residents at 1.9 officers per 1000 residents. Post-recession, Washington State averages are at 1.47 officers per 1000 residents.
To understand more fully the decreasing ratio of officers to residents, it's important to look at the population over the same time period. During this period, the population of Camas increased by nearly 5000 residents, while the number of full-time personnel in the Police Department decreased as a result of the recession.