OAKLAND (CBS SF) — Oakland Mayor Jean Quan said the City Council’s approval early Wednesday of four measures aimed at beefing up and improving the city’s understaffed Police Department represents “an opportunity bring down crime and increase hope.”
Quan said she’s “pleased and encouraged” by council’s actions at a marathon meeting that didn’t end until nearly 3 a.m. and she hopes they will help bring “a different relationship between the police and the community.”
The most controversial measure, and the one that generated the most debate, calls for expanding an existing contract with Massachusetts-based Strategic Policy Partnership to bring on William Bratton, who formerly served as police chief in Los Angeles and police commissioner in New York City and Boston, to provide crime-fighting advice to Oakland.
The partnership is headed by Robert Wasserman, the former chief of staff of the Office of National Drug Control Policy under President Bill Clinton.
City Administrator Deanna Santana entered into a $99,000 contract with the partnership last fall to provide advice, but because the contract is being increased to $250,000 to bring Bratton on board, the matter needed City Council approval.
One of the other measures that was approved calls for hiring 11 Alameda County Sheriff’s deputies for up to 180 days at a cost of up to $265,000 to work ten-hour shifts twice a week on violence-suppression measures in East and West Oakland.
Quan said that measure will have the most immediate impact because the deputies are expected to begin working in Oakland on Feb. 2.