Although almost 2,000 applicants have applied for positions in the Costa Mesa Police Department, the City Council says it won't hire until the police officer association agrees to a second-tier pension plan.

The department has two openings and expects five to seven vacancies by year's end, according to city spokesman Bill Lobdell.

Contract negotiations between the association and the city are at a standstill, according to Costa Mesa Police Assn. President Jason Chamness.

The city called off the last meeting more than a month ago, he said.

"I couldn't tell you what the holdup is," Chamness said.

In addition to a physical test, potential recruits are subject to an extensive background check, and psychological and medical evaluations, according to the city.

As of Aug. 30, 1,135 people applied to become police recruits, 603 applied for the reserve officer position, and 187 applied as lateral transfers from other departments or as academy graduates, the city said.

Of those applying to become police recruits, 22 passed the physical ability test and were invited to interview Monday, according to the city.

A police officer salary range is $5,919 to $7,932 per month. Typically, a new hire is brought on at the lower end of that range, but someone with more experience could earn more, according to city Human Resources Manager Lance Nakamoto.

Recruitment for the reserve officer position opened March 29, while recruitment for the other two positions opened June 14, according to the city's announcement.

lauren.williams@latimes.com

Twitter: @lawilliams30