WEBB CITY, Mo. — There were plenty of smiles on the faces of some Webb City police officers, and their loved ones this evening.

Monday night’s city council meeting started off with shiny badges and handshakes for four police officers who are now corporals.

It comes with supervisor duties for Austin Fohey, Tyler Winters, Davy Blair, and Jacob Williams.

The proud mothers and wives of these new corporals had the honor of pinning the brand-new badges on their uniforms.

“It’s an opportunity for the officers to advance through the ranks in our department, which, really hadn’t happened in a long time. We’ve got several patrol sergeants that have been sergeants for many years, which is fortunate,” said Chief Don Melton, Webb City Police Department.

“Officers that are promoted, tend to stay our officers. It’s kind of a simple formula. And we like to reward people for a job well done and with that promotion comes added responsibility, but also added income on their part. Not only is it because they care about their community, they want to protect their community, but they like it here like the rest of us,” said Lynn Ragsdale, Mayor, Webb City.

These career advancements also mean the police department is nearly fully staffed.

Two more hires would bring it to capacity, which is 26 officers.

“And having the number of men that we can promote to corporal status, means that we’ve got a very – they may be young in some respects, but they’re very mature in their job performance. And that is a great dynamic for the police department,” said Ragsdale.

This comes just after the police department was awarded more than $40,000 in “law enforcement sales tax” money.

It’s being used to upgrade patrol vehicles and service weapons.

“Just having wonderful officers and dedicated officers, we want to do our part as the city to equip those officers to not only keep us safe, but to keep them safe. And constantly upgrading their equipment is critical,” said Ragsdale.