Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 2021-05-04 16:31:43 –
Oklahoma City (Free press) — The Oklahoma City City Council met on Tuesday to hear about next year’s budget proposals from the first three divisions of a short series of budget hearings.
The council heard budget proposals from the Oklahoma City Fire Department (OCFD), the Oklahoma City City Court, and the Oklahoma City Police Department (OKCPD). The meeting was attended by all members of the city council and the mayor, mayor and city clerk.
The meeting began with the only voting item for the meeting, which was a resolution to date the budget presentations and public comment hearings on May 18th and June 1st. The council plans to adopt the 2021-22 budget at the next meeting. June 8th.
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Budget Director Doug Dowler has begun his presentation, outlining the budget for next year.
Next year’s city’s total budget will be $ 1,648,600,000. Its budget has fallen slightly from last year, down 2.4%, while its general revenue budget has risen 6.8% to $ 32 million.
The new budget will “unfreeze” many of the positions that remained open last year, fearing a pandemic loss of revenue. This year’s budget will also add 109 staff.
The details haven’t been fully discussed, but it also includes $ 300,000 as a mental health component from the police. We also provide $ 1 million for other concerns such as homelessness, local police, and human rights. How those funds are used is still a matter of debate and negotiation.
The budget also restores many services that were interrupted during the pandemic due to budget shortages. This includes more frequent mowing of the park, restoration of the Spokies program, and other urban services.
Chief Richard Kelly gave a presentation on the fire department’s budget proposal.
This year’s budget includes 999 unified jobs and 40 private jobs. Twenty-one of these positions were frozen on last year’s budget, but this year they will be used to staff at Oklahoma City’s latest fire department, Station # 38. The station building at the southwestern tip of Oklahoma City will be completed in early 2022 and staff will be ready to live on the first day.
The new budget includes two new positions. The first is a business intelligence analyst. Business intelligence analysts use the data that organizations have already collected to build a more cohesive view of how organizations can perform most efficiently and best pursue the results they want to achieve.
Another position is Digital Media Producer. At the hearing, District 7 Parliamentarian Nikki Nice said he hoped that this additional staff member would not mean the resignation of another staff member. Nice said the fire department’s social media presence is very good.
According to Kelly, the focus of this sector is to ensure that 70% of calls arrive within 7 minutes, especially when urban sprawl affects the services provided by the sector. In the previous year, the average was close to 60%. Kelly said higher call rates could be the cause during the two disastrous weather events that Oklahoma City faced last year. Kelly is optimistic that next year’s average will improve.
La Shawn Thompson, the district court’s governor, also gave a budget presentation on Tuesday.
Mr Thompson said the proposed budget included 62 positions, including four local judges appointed by the city council. The court’s proposed budget is $ 8.7 million.
The court wants to add one court officer this year to be part of the court’s outreach program. That position participated in helping the defendant organize all paperwork, or before the judge at a Rule 8 hearing where the defendant is likely to turn out to be “unpaid.” Ready to go to Defendants found to be “poor” may be exempt from fines and fees by the court.
Last year, 7,214 cases were ultimately called poor.
Oklahoma City Police Chief Wade Girly gave the longest presentation of the day, all filled with photos and videos that seemed to make the police station successful.
Girly offered his budget as $ 227,731,144, an increase from last year.
Girly went on to give an hour and a half presentation, including questions and comments from the council. Meanwhile, Gourley talked about the trends in the department over the past two years, including the Violent Crime Arrest Team (VCAT) and the School Resources Officer (SRO).
Girly was convinced that the sector was successful in protecting the community and preventing crime. However, Gourley argued that violent crimes were on the rise nationwide, including Oklahoma City.
Girly’s proposed budget will restore 34 positions. According to Girly, some positions will be filled by civilians in order for police officers to be released to do police work.
Police also want to hire a business intelligence analyst.
At some point in the presentation, the chief said of data management and crime scene investigations, “We are police. You should not do such a job.”
Girly referred to a survey conducted a few years ago and concluded that police needed to add more than 30 new police officers annually. This will increase the current number of police officers in Oklahoma City from the current 1,100 to 1,500.
Girly was asked by Barbara Young, a new councilor in District 3, what city council members can do to assist in the solicitation. Girly said members of the department are the best recruiters because they can tell people how it feels to do a job that makes a difference.
The meeting was closed with public comments. Meanwhile, 10 residents spoke. Only one of those ten commented in favor of the local police.
Patikoch, president of the Windsor Forest Neighborhood Association, talked about the wonders of the police in her neighborhood. She said they would attend a neighborhood meeting and provide great feedback and insights.
The rest of the callers had different perspectives.
Callers have asked the council and police to direct resources to programs that keep communities safe, such as mental health resources and interruptions in violence. Callers said police robbed resources without good results.
In her comment, Holland said Girly was unwilling to talk to the community. She called him a “self-serving liar” before the voice was cut off by the city clerk.
Local rapper and activist Jabby called for the meeting and mentioned Koch’s call. He speculated that her police experience was different from him, as the police probably looked like her in her neighborhood. Jabby said the police officers in his community didn’t come from there and didn’t look like him. He continued to say that the police were in his community to control people.
Budget Director Dowler said the council will hear presentations on May 18 and June 1 for many other city sectors other than those announced on Tuesday.
A resolution of the council created a 20-day comment period. Residents can access the FY22 budget at okc.gov/budget, where they can leave feedback on their budget proposals.
The next meeting of the city council is 8:30 am on May 11th
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Last updated: May 4, 2021 15:48 Brett Dickerson – Editor
OKC City Council hears budget proposals from Fire, Courts, and Police Source link OKC City Council hears budget proposals from Fire, Courts, and Police