You know it's a slow news day when you see reports about Police forces allowing their patrolman to grow beards - and so is the case today in Pittsfield, Mass.

The Police Department recently made change to their "Department's Manual of Rules and Regulations" to allow for their patrolman to actually sport a beard. But it's got to be nice and trimmed up

If a beard and/or mustache is worn, it shall be groomed and neatly trimmed at all times in order not to present a ragged appearance. Full and partial beards (goatees) are authorized, but patchy, spotty clumps of facial hair are not considered beards and as such are not permitted.

Sporting scruff, by trimming a mustache, goatee or beard closer than one quarter inch, is not allowed

Facial hair also must be no more than three-quarters of an inch, according to the rules, and "the bulk of the beard" (distance that the mass of facial hair protrudes from the skin of the face) shall not exceed one-half inch.

Why now all of a sudden is the change being made? The last edition of manual came out in 2011 and was recently reviewed with the force. Questions were raised about facial hair and the chief decided to look in to the matter before the change was made.

So yes, a slow day in the news when this is one of the first things to pop up. At least now you know that Pittsfield, Mass police have the right to sport facial hair. That's a good thing, right? I honestly wonder how many "paid hours" were spent on creating this rule - You know, paid by us the taxpayers.

[Berkshire Eagle]