The glossary below contains some common terms related to reserve peace officer program.
Agencies authorized to have reserve officers
The background investigation shall be completed on or prior to the appointment date. [Commission Regulation 1007(a)] The medical and psychological suitability examinations shall be conducted within 1 year before hire. [Commission Procedure C-2-2].
Reserve officers are required to complete minimum training before being assigned to peace officer duties. The training requirement is determined by the appointment date. Past and current minimum training standards are listed in Commission Procedure H-3.
Issued to full-time peace officers employed and paid as such in a participating California Agency, who have satisfactorily completed the Basic Course and a period of probation, of no less than one year. An officer must acquire the certificate upon completion of probation but within 24 months of date of hire. [Commission Procedure F-1-2 and F-1-5].
Certificate of Completion
A certificate issued by a training presenter to a student upon successful completion of a course of training.
Certificate of Recognition
May be issued by department heads to Level I, II or III reserve officers upon a person’s designation to a specific reserve officer level. POST has not established specific eligibility criteria for issuing Certificates of Recognition. This certificate is designed primarily to be used by departments to give recognition or to document progression to various levels of reserve officer assignment. Each department head may develop criteria and procedures for issuance of the Certificate of Recognition. [Commission Procedure H-4-2(a) and H-4-3].
Reserve Officer Certificate
Issued by POST to reserve officers who meet the requirements for Level I assignment and in addition have completed 200 hours of general law enforcement experience. The certificate is not required by statute nor necessary to exercise peace officer powers as a Level I reserve officer. [Commission Procedure H-4-2(b)].
Penal Code section 13511.5 requires that each applicant for admission to a basic course of training certified by the Commission (including the PC 832 Course) that includes the carrying and use of firearms, who is not sponsored by a local or other law enforcement agency or is not a peace officer employed by a state or local agency, department, or district, shall be required to submit written certification from the Department of Justice that the applicant has no criminal history background which would disqualify him or her, from owning, possessing, or having under his or her control a firearm. [POST Bulletin 98-28].
Continuing Professional Training (CPT)
Every peace officer, Level I and Level II Reserve Officer [defined in PAM sections H-1-2(a) -(b)], Public Safety Dispatcher [defined in Regulation 1001(bb)], and Public Safety Dispatch Supervisor shall satisfactorily complete the Continuing Professional Training (CPT) requirement of 24 or more hours of training every two years. [Commission Regulations 1005(d)(1), 1007(b)(1)(E) and 1007(b)(2)(C)].
- The CPT requirement for Level I reserve officers became effective July 1, 1995.
- The CPT requirement for Level II reserve officers became effective July 1, 1999.
- Reserve Officers are not required to complete Perishable Skills and Communications training. [Commission Regulation 1005(d)(3)].
Designated Level I
Field Training Program
All Level I reserve officers, upon completing the Regular Basic Course or its equivalent, shall complete a POST-approved Field Training Program (PAM, section D-13) prior to working alone in a general law enforcement assignment. The Field Training Program, which shall be delivered over a minimum of 10 weeks (400 hours). [Commission Regulation 1007(b)(1)(C)].
A Level I reserve peace officer is exempt from the Field Training Program requirement if the Level I reserve peace officer is reappointed to a Level I position with less than a three year break in service and has successfully completed:
- Modules A, B and C and 200 hours of structured field training; or
- The Regular Basic Course or its equivalent and 400 hours of a POST-approved Field Training Program. [Commission Regulation 1007(b)(1)(D)].
There is no field training requirement for Level II or III reserves.
Full Time Employment
Is employment as defined by a state, local, or department regulation, charter resolution, or ordinance; wherein the employee normally works in excess of 20 hours weekly or 87 hours monthly; is tenured or has a right to due process in personnel matters; and, is entitled to workers compensation and retirement provisions as are other full-time employees of the same personnel classification in the department. [Commission Regulation 1001(p)].
General Law Enforcement
"Prevention and detection of crime and the general enforcement of laws" refers to the peace officer authority of a Level I or Level II reserve officer assigned to investigate crime, or patrol a geographic area and personally handle the full range of requests for police services, and take enforcement action on the full range of law violations for which the reserve’s department has enforcement responsibility. [Commission Procedure H-1-2(f)].
Hours a Reserve Officer is Required to Work
Refer to Qualifying Service.
"Immediate supervision for Level II reserves" means the reserve officer acts under the direction of a peace officer who has completed the basic training course for deputy sheriffs and police officers prescribed by the Commission, and is routinely in the physical proximity of and available to the reserve officer; however, allowance is permitted for necessary temporary separations. [Commission Procedure H-1-2(e)].
Lateral Transfer of Reserve Officers
"Lateral Entry" refers to a hiring practice which may exempt an individual from some of the department’s hiring and training procedures, as the individual’s prior experience, level of responsibility, and/or training are taken into consideration for appointment. [Commission Regulation 1001(t)].
Individuals who have previous service as a Level I or II reserve officer may qualify for a lateral transfer if they have less than a three year break in service. There is no lateral transfer provision for Level III reserve officers.
Level I Reserve
Refers to a trained reserve officer as described in Penal Code section 832.6 (a)(1), and who is assigned specific police functions whether or not working alone [830.6 (a)(1)] OR to the prevention and detection of crime and the general enforcement of the laws of this state [830.6 (a)(2)] whether or not working alone.
- The authority of a "non designated" Level I reserve shall extend only for the duration of assignment to specific police functions, as provided by Penal Code Section 830.6 (a)(1).
- The authority of a "designated" Level I reserve, assigned to the prevention and detection of crime and the general enforcement of the laws of this state, shall include the full powers and duties of a peace officer as provided by Penal Code section 830.1. A Level I reserve is “designated” by authority of a city ordinance or a county resolution [Penal Code section 830.6 (a)(2)]. [Commission Procedure H-1-2(a)].
Level II Reserve
Refers to a trained reserve officer as described in Penal Code section 832.6 (a)(2), who works under the immediate supervision of a peace officer who has completed the basic training course for deputy sheriffs and police officers prescribed by the Commission, and is assigned to the prevention and detection of crime and the general enforcement of the laws of this State. [Commission Procedure H-1-2(b)].
Level III Reserve
Refers to a trained reserve officer as described in Penal Code section 832.6 (a)(3), who is supervised in the accessible vicinity by a Level I reserve officer or a full time regular peace officer employed by a law enforcement agency authorized to have reserves and deployed in limited support duties not requiring general law enforcement powers in their routine performance. Those limited support duties shall include traffic control, security at parades and sporting events, report taking, evidence transportation, parking enforcement, and other duties that are not likely to result in physical arrests. Level III reserve officers may transport prisoners without immediate supervision. [Commission Regulation 1007(a) .
See Regular Basic Course Formats.
Modules A, B, and C
PC 832 Course
An introductory course of training required for all persons described as peace officers in Chapter 4.5 of the Penal Code. The course consists of a minimum of 64 hours of training and is divided into two-parts; the Arrest Course (40 hours) and the Firearms Course (24 hours).
Perishable Skills Program
See Continuing Professional Training.
Serving in a California peace officer/Level I reserve officer position for which a POST-certified Regular Basic Course or Specialized Investigators’ Basic Course was required by law. Service as a Level I reserve officer will be considered only for a Level I reserve who serves an average monthly minimum of 16 hours. [Commission Regulation 1008].
Regular Basic Course
Every peace officer, except Reserve Levels II and III, those peace officers listed in Commission Regulation 1005(a)(3) [peace officers whose primary duties are investigative], and 1005(a)(4) [coroners or deputy coroners], shall complete the Regular Basic Course before being assigned duties which include the exercise of peace officer powers. [Commission Regulation 1005(a)(1)].
Regular Basic Course Formats
- Standard Format – The Regular Basic Course delivered in a one-part instructional sequence. The Standard Format includes both intensive and extended presentations.
- Modular Format – The Regular Basic Course delivered in a three-part instructional sequence. Completion of the Level III, Level II and Level I Modules, as set forth in Commission Regulation 1007, constitutes satisfaction of the Regular Basic Course training requirement.
Reserve Coordinator Training
A complete list of training courses for reserve coordinators is available in the Catalog of Certified Courses on the POST Website. Look under the letter “R” for Reserve Coordinator Courses.
Modules A, B, C and D. The former entry level training system for reserve peace officers. This format was replaced by the Regular Basic Course – Modular Format effective July 1, 1999.
Completion of Modules A, B, C and D constitutes satisfaction of the Regular Basic Course training requirement.
Reserve Officer Certificate
Reserve Rank Structure
POST only recognizes the reserve levels specified in Penal Code section 830.6. Any other rank is specific to the agency.
Reserve Training Courses
A complete list of reserve training presenters is available in the Catalog of Certified Courses on the POST website. Look under the letter “A” for Arrest and Firearms (PC 832), which is Part 1 of the two-part Level III Module. Look under the letter “L” for level to find the other components of the modular format.
This is not a California peace officer position because the term does not exist in law or regulation.
Three Year Rule
The rule that relates to the necessity to requalify basic training or arrest and firearms (PC 832) training. (Reference Commission Regulations 1008 and 1080) [Commission Regulation 1001(mm)].
Refers to a qualified Level I reserve officer who works without immediate supervision and makes independent decisions. Two qualified Level I reserves, or a qualified Level I reserve and a regular officer, are not precluded from working together. [Commission Procedure H-1-2(g)].
Working for Multiple Agencies
There is nothing in law or regulation that prohibits dual status. The individual has to go through a complete peace officer selection with each agency and meet all of the training requirements for each position. An agency can have a policy that prevents one of their officers from serving with another law enforcement agency.