SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — Businesses in San Francisco’s Union Square are hiring police officers to keep crime down.

They are now shelling out more than $100 an hour in record numbers for police officers.  

The hustle and bustle of Union Square attracts shoppers from all over the world and recently a lot more crime. 

 Stores are hiring San Francisco police officers, like Macy’s which has contract under the 10-B program where the business pays the off-duty officer overtime, for extra protection.

“10-B can be more effective,” said Karin Flood with the Union Square Business Improvement District. “[They] have police radio, they provide authority because they have a badge,  gun and are in uniform. People might think twice before breaking the law.”

Flood told KRON4 stores want the officers in the doorway to prevent retail theft and make the workers feel safe.

While a security guard could do the same, the badge and gun, send a strong message that shoppers seem to notice.

The cost is anywhere from $130 to $150 an hour depending on the officers rank, and time of the job.

It could cost the store about a $1,000 a day. 

Under a dozen stores use the 10-B program.