Central New York police officers like Mark Williams, Ed Noonan, and Bryan Coromato of the Utica Police Department, the Rome Police Chief Kevin Beach, and Oneida County Sheriff Rob Maciol put in long hours, and are dedicated public servants who have earned and enjoy high profile positions in our law enforcement community.

They are certainly well-acquainted with the realities: Salaries are higher than average. Conditions are a LOT more stressful than average. The opportunity to have a direct and palpable impact on your community is enormous. Being a police officer can be tremendously rewarding, immensely time-consuming and nerve-wracking.

WalletHub has an up-to-date study on 2018's Best & Worst States to Be a Police Officer. One of the main markers is salary. The average salary for all law enforcement officials nationwide is $62,960, which far exceeds the $50,620 average salary for ALL occupations. The worst place to be a cop is Arkansas and the best is North Dakota.

New York was #2 in the Opportunity/Competition subheading, one of three statistical areas covered in the study. The Empire State also scored in the top 20 in both Job Hazards/Protections measures and in the Quality of Life category. All combined, these metrics added up to a #2 overall ranking for New York.

Public opinion of law enforcement figures differs of course, depending on age, ethnicity and social status. But, despite those vagaries, the benefits are pretty good, according to WalletHub:

retirement-contribution matches, tuition assistance, ample leave time, a take-home vehicle, and access to health and fitness facilities (and) full retirement benefits as early as age 40...

With all the positives and negatives, would you want your son or daughter to pursue a career in law enforcement, here in New York or elsewhere?

BONUS VIDEO: