New police officers will be hitting the streets of Grand Island before the end of the year.
Chief Steve Lamken said four officers should be done with field training and ready to patrol alone soon.
Four other officers are about half way through the police academy.
The department is also in the process of hiring five more.
Lamken said with turn-over and training time, it's been hard to get up to the 87 officers the city has authorized him to employ.
"Nine months before they're actually functioning officers on the street. There's a lot invested in preparing an officer to become a police officer who can work independently with a good skill set," he said.
A public safety study conducted last year revealed the need for more officers in G.I.
Lamken said the shortage has officers going from call to call with little time to prevent crime.
"It's a hindrance," he said. "We're really trying to move forward with strategic policing. Well, one of the key elements of that is having enough police officers in the patrol division to have more time available to go out and do strategic plans. Very difficult to accomplish when you're short on officers."