SAN FRANCISCO (BCN) — The San Francisco Police Commission on Wednesday night unanimously voted 4-0 to reject a proposed 11 percent budget cut to the city’s Police Department that would have included layoffs.
Under the proposal, some 210 full-time positions within the department would be cut, including 167 sworn officers and 43 civilian positions, during the upcoming fiscal year 2022-2023.READ MORE: Lake County Luxury Hotel, Housing Project Raises Concerns Over Wildfire Risk
The proposed cuts were part of the two-year budget presented by Mayor London Breed last year.
“I do not agree with what the cuts are, as they would be devastating to our department,” Police Chief Bill Scott said during the meeting.
Citing an uptick in gun violence, not just citywide but also nationwide, Scott said now is not the time for cuts.READ MORE: Theft Leaves San Jose Couple Bereft: 'We’re Heartbroken, All Our Precious Things Are Gone'
“Violence is up,” he said. “We need additional officers to address this, and it’s self-explanatory. We do no want violence to go in the direction that it’s going.”
The proposal comes amid a national movement to defund police departments and other law enforcement agencies, which resulted in city leaders last year cutting $25 million from the police budget, bringing it down from $692.9 million to $667.9 million for this current fiscal year.
In a statement on posted on social media, the San Francisco Police Officers Association applauded the commission’s decision, saying the cuts “would have catastrophic impacts on our ability to address the rise in shootings and other crime in SF. Thank you for standing up for public safety.”
Regardless of the commission’s vote on the cuts, both Breed and the Board of Supervisors will ultimately decide on whether to approve or reject the proposed cuts and city budget altogether sometime before July 1.MORE NEWS: Indoor Restaurant Dining Resumes, Movie Theaters Reopen in SF and Santa Clara Counties
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