MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minneapolis is one step closer to redirecting millions of dollars from police to a new public safety plan, and the city’s mayor is already considering a veto.
A city council committee approved the highly debated plan Monday, which redirects non-emergency calls, creates a mental health crisis response and expands violence prevention programming.
The $8 million initiatives is funding by cutting overtime pay for police officers and reducing the number of sworn officers to around 750.
“Today the City Council was able to come together, after a robust discussion of the details, to support the Safety for All Budget Plan’s strategic investments in violence prevention, mental health crisis response, common-sense shifts from MPD for report-only calls and traffic response, and increased oversight over MPD’s budget,” City Council president Lisa Bender said. “Approving these strategic, incremental budget changes is one step toward making good on our shared commitment to a City that is both safe and just.”
Mayor Jacob Frey on Monday evening issued a statement:
“Pre-emptively reducing the sworn capacity by 138 officers prior to having alternative responses in place or completing the mutually-agreed upon staffing study is irresponsible. We’ve given the Council every opportunity to join us in a both-and approach that gives Chief Arradondo the flexibility he needs to move forward and ability to scale up new safety solutions. Last week, we joined private, faith, and community leaders to launch a new, $5 million initiative that would better integrate mental health and social services into our emergency response system. We continue to stand ready to collaborate and support the safety beyond policing initiatives, but I am actively considering a veto due to the massive, permanent cut to officer capacity.”
The City Council will make its final vote on Wednesday.
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