TEMPLE, Texas — In order to keep residents protected, the city of Temple said it is still in need of a few good men and women for the police force to be fully staffed.

There are 143 sworn law enforcement officers at the Temple Police Department, but only 76 are assigned to patrol.

Temple police said it needs about a dozen more officers to be at full strength. That's on top of the four new patrol officers who were sworn in last week.

There are two 12-hour shifts and about 17 officers are on patrol each shift. Temple police said they are licensed to have 154 officers.

The department admitted that sometimes finding the best most qualified people can be a bit rough.

"Just like any other office we're always looking for qualified candidates and sometimes that can be hard," said Temple police spokeswoman Ellen Morton. "Right now that's a problem that many law enforcement agencies are facing in this country."

The Temple Police Department said for anyone who is interested, its next test is Dec. 8 at 8 a.m. Registration is closing on November 30 at 5 p.m.

Temple police will also have an open house on Nov. 29 at 6 p.m.