This Thursday, Metropolis Council will meet to work via extra of the logistics of town’s largest coverage precedence over the past yr: reimagining public security.
In a memo despatched to Council on April 9, Rey Arellano, assistant metropolis supervisor for public security, detailed a number of agenda objects that revolve round “finances amendments and decoupling actions.”
The primary merchandise is the creation of the Emergency Communications Division, a standalone division that will substitute the Emergency Communications Division, which is at the moment below the jurisdiction of the Austin Police Division. The division, which is staffed by greater than 200 staff, is operational 24/7 and receives roughly 1 million calls a year. That is the a part of the police division the place 911 name receivers and police dispatchers work.
A newly created Emergency Communications Division would report to not APD, however to Arellano. The division would have 222 full-time equal civilian positions and an annual finances of $16,085,640.
In response to the memo, Arellano sees this modification as an “alternative to streamline and supply for steady enchancment in emergency communications whereas additionally permitting APD to deal with their main regulation enforcement capabilities.”
One other operational change Council will contemplate are safety contracts for municipal court docket companies.
At the moment, many court docket safety companies like working screening stations, conducting constructing patrols and hand inspections are carried out by APD officers. Nonetheless, G4S Safe Options Inc. has been recognized as a vendor to complement these companies with unarmed safety guards.
There are some caveats; not all duties would switch over to G4S guards.
In response to the memo, duties “corresponding to prisoner transfers; inmate monitoring; warrant service; contempt of court docket arrests ordered by a choose; and enforcement of lawful orders” would nonetheless be dealt with by APD officers, although the long-term objective is to determine a court docket marshal system that will substitute APD duties completely.
Metropolis administration additionally recommends separating the APD Alarm Administration Unit, a small unit devoted to eliminating false alarms that tie up public security resources.
In response to the unit’s website, “firefighters and paramedics reply to 1000’s of false alarm calls yearly. These pointless responses end in an infinite burden in assets and expense; which in flip reduces emergency unit availability to reply to actual emergencies.”
Separating the unit from APD would transfer six positions out of the police division and have a complete price of $551,790.
Town supervisor’s workplace can also be seeking to take away many administrative capabilities from APD’s scope of labor, together with human assets, public info, facility upkeep, and finance.
Town supervisor would additionally contract funding for issues like Axon physique cams and AT&T cellphone contracts. These contracts shall be managed by the company Monetary Companies Division.
The memo additionally pushes town to additional its relationship with Joyce James Consulting, a agency that gives variety trainings and produces fairness studies and has consulted for town on a lot of its public security reforms over the previous yr.
Arellano says the consulting agency would assist “guarantee profitable implementation of Reimagining Public Security efforts, together with offering reform suggestions, facilitating technique classes, and helping to supply a racial fairness lens to key decision-making.”
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