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City Hall Spending Priorities:
Mayor/Mgr Propose, Council Will Decide

Police: Mayor/Mgt Proposal Would Eliminate 40 Sworn Officers + 32 Civilians; Reduce Gang Enforcement & Investigation Bureaus, Acknowledges Would Likely Mean Higher Crime; Funds One 40 Person Police Academy Class in FY13

Mayor Foster proposes comprehensive Police and Fire Dept. services review. "No one in a policy position should get caught in a panic or rush to judgment regarding crime increases. We all should remember that crime hit 40 year lows, so recent increases in some segments are applied to a very low base. The Police Department should also not be immune from efficiency or management rigor..."

Team coverage by Joe Mello & Bill Pearl


VIDEO TELLS AMECO SOLAR'S STORY. AND CLICK HERE TO HEAR AMECO PRESIDENT PATRICK REDGATE EXPLAIN WHY SOLAR MAKES SUCH GOOD SENSE.

(August 2, 2012) -- On August 1, Mayor Bob Foster recommended that the City Council adopt City Management's proposed FY13 City Hall budget, which applies what the Mayor and management call "proportional reductions" that would cut LBPD's budget again, resulting in the measures below (among others) proposed by LB management. Quoted text is from budget narrative unless otherwise indicated.

  • Eliminate 40 officers and 32 civiians.

  • Reduce Gang Enforcement among other specialized units
    "Reduce the number of Police Officers assigned to specialized units, including the Gang Enforcement Section Field Unit and the South Division Directed Enforcement Team. This will increase the reliance on the Directed Enforcement Teams of the North, West, and new Central [consolidated South and West] Patrol Division to participate in targeted operations, special details, and handle gang investigations"

  • Cut Investigation Bureau by 29 sworn personnel and nine civilians (both figures "full time equivalent")
    "[I]nvestigative fieldwork will have to be enhanced by first responding Patrol officers. The Police Department will be challenged to continue to maintain its high violent crimes clearance rate with itís [sic] remaining resources..."

  • Longer response times for "non-priority" calls

    "It is anticipated that resources will allow the Department to respond to Priority 1 calls for service in an average of 5.0 minutes or less. Priority 1 calls are potentially life-threatening emergencies, and encompass events which involve life safety such as a shooting or a felonious crime in progress. This level of call for service receives the Police Departmentís fastest response time. The proposed budget will reduce the Patrol Bureau by seven Full Time Equivalent (FTE) sworn and 12.4 FTE civilian positions. It is anticipated that the Patrol Bureau can utilize its remaining personnel to efficiently respond to Priority 1 calls."

  • Acknowledges possible increased crime

    "The FY 13 violent crime rate may be negatively impacted due to the release of over 30,000 inmates from California prisons to improve health care services for remaining inmates, and Police Department staffing reductions."

  • Reduced civilian staffing that will impact investigations, reports and patrol officers' duties
    "Non-sworn positions supporting the Investigations, Patrol, and Support Bureaus will be reduced, which will slow investigations and report preparation. The Jail Division will be restructured to eliminate the Prisoner Transport Unit, with the responsibilities for transport being shifted to Patrol Officers. The Advanced Officer Training curriculum and associated positions will be reduced."

  • Eliminate key outreach and specialized police services support
    "There will no longer be dedicated Divisional crime analysts, Bureau budget analysts, and a broad range of specialized police services support. The responsibilities for those functions will be centralized and will likely result in more work for the remaining staff and a reprioritization of the workload."

  • Use Tidelands Operations Funds to bolster Port Security
    "Enhance port security through the addition of six Police Officers and one Commander, as well as associated supplies, equipment and contractual services. Enhancement is revenue offset through the Police Department MOU with the Harbor Department."

  • Shift some sworn staff to help train recruits for FY13 police recruit Academy class.
    [Quote from Mayor's recommendations] "I am supportive of the majority of the one-time uses proposed by the Manager, including [among bullet points] $2.9 million for a 40-person police academy."

Mayor Bob Foster's official budget recommendations include the following reference regarding police funding:

[Among bullet-pointed recomendations]

  • Embark on a comprehensive Police and Fire Department services review.

    No one in a policy position should get caught in a panic or rush to judgment regarding crime increases. We all should remember that crime hit 40 year lows, so recent increases in some segments are applied to a very low base. The Police Department should also not be immune from efficiency or management rigor.

    The recent Management Partners report shows Long Beach has not only more sworn officers but more overall employees per 1,000 residents than comparable cities.

    So, presented with that information, we have a responsibility to ask: are we our using our resources in the best manner and in the most efficient ways possible? With that in mind, if an examination determines more resources should be applied to our police, then we must consider what we eliminate to re-allocate those resources.

  • To hear Mayor/Mgm't Aug. 1 proposed budget presentation, click here. Mayor's opening runs to 17:25 (parallels his written statement on next link); City Mgr. starts at 17:30; Q & A runs from 35:40 to 44:45). To see detailed budget documents (City Mgm't materials + Mayor's recommendations), click here.


    LBReport.com FY13 Proposed City Budget Coverage:

  • Police: Eliminate 40 Sworn Officers + 32 Civilians; Reduce Gang Enforcement & Investigation Bureaus, Acknowledges Would Likely Mean Higher Crime; Would Fund One 34-Officer (17 Recruits for Six Month Training) Replenishment Police Academy Class in FY13
  • Eliminate One Fire Engine (Location Not Publicly Specified), Cut Paramedics In Half (Requires L.A. County Approval), Increase Paramedic Units From Eight to Eleven
  • Parks & Rec: Eliminate Free Youth Sports & Afterschool Pgms Except In High Density/High Crime Areas, Eliminate Park Ranger Safety Patrols at El Dorado Park except Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, And More
  • Libraries: Cut Main Library Hours, Convert Six Branches to "Self-Serve," Cut Staff at Harte and Mark Twain
  • Council Reaction: Councilwoman Schipske Says Mayor/Mgr's Proposed Budget Cuts Would Hurt Eastside Most

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