In New York on Monday, Mayor Bill de Blasio has agreed to cut $1 billion from the budget of the New York City Police Department.
During the protests against George Floyd’s death, activists and city council members have been requesting a reduction of the police department’s budget of approximately $6 billion, amounting to $1 billion. POLITICO first reported on Sunday night that the mayor’s office had agreed to a series of cuts by the city council. De Blasio initially rejected the proposal, but confirmed at a news conference on Monday that he sent a proposal to the Security Council that included a savings of $1 billion.
The mayor told reporters: “I am pleased to say that we have a plan for real reform and real redistribution, while ensuring that we protect the safety of the city.”
The agreement involves the transfer of unarmed school security agents in police uniforms to the Ministry of Education, the cancellation of the July class of about 1,100 police recruits, and the transfer of certain homeless outreach activities from police control .
According to the law, the city budget must be approved before midnight on Tuesday.
De Blasio declined to discuss most of the details that he had agreed to cut, but confirmed that this would include the redeployment of school safety agencies, which will happen for several years.
De Blasio said that in addition to cutting operating expenses of $1 billion, the New York Police Department’s capital budget will also be cut by more than $500 million, and the money will be used to build youth entertainment centers and public housing development.
“Everything is based on security considerations, so we will be able to ensure the required patrol intensity. We will be able to ensure that school safety will work. The school’s safety issues will be resolved within a few years.” de Blasio said.
de Blasio said: “At first I was very skeptical and wanted to see how everything will fit together.” “In order to find the right way to do things, a lot of hard work has happened.”
Critics have objected to the upcoming transaction.
“Mayor and Speaker of Bracio [Corey] Johnson uses interesting math and budgeting techniques to try to mislead New Yorkers into thinking they plan to meet the sport’s need to cut at least $1B directly,” Anthony Pierre, a spokesman for the Police Reform Community Federation, said he called for a comprehensive freeze on NYPD officials. This is a lie. “
The total budget is expected to be $87 billion, lower than the Mayor’s proposal of $95.3 billion in January. The economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic cost the city more than $7.4 billion in taxes.
De Blasio said he was “disappointed” by the State Senate’s refusal to date to grant the city up to $5 billion in loans to fill the gap. He said that the General Assembly is more willing to accept this idea.
The mayor said that without the aid of the federal government, the approval of the borrowing agency or the labor savings agreement before October 1, the city would have to lay off 22,000 workers.
“This is not the 1970s. I don’t have a consistent answer to why this is not the right choice.” De Blasio said. “Crunch is never the way to go.”
Mike Murphy, a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, said De Blasio failed to address “the legitimate concerns of our senators.”
He said in a statement on Monday: “We are not opposed to a meaningful loan plan, but we are still worried that the mayor began to request $7 billion and then reduced his request to $5 billion to close the $1.6 billion gap “”Prudence requires a plan that cannot be rushed through before actual action is required, especially if the possibility of additional federal assistance is still not resolved.”