Councilors react to mayor's proposed cuts to Burlington Police

Published: Jun. 16, 2020 at 5:15 PM EDT
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Burlington's mayor is pitching a budget plan that takes millions from the police department and sends it to other parts of the community. Our Erin Brown breaks down that $1.9 million proposed budget cuts and has reaction from city councilors.

The total proposed reduction is $1.9 million. That’s a 10.2% cut to the department's budget.

Of that, $1.1 million is for expense cuts to the department.

Mayor Miro Weinberger, D-Burlington, is proposing decreasing the number of officers from 105 to 93.

Another $800,000 will be reallocated to other departments like the Department of Public Works for parking enforcement.

More than 100 people spoke during the public forum at a City Council meeting Monday night but nearly 1,000 people signed up to give their feedback.

I asked two councilors from two different political parties what they think of the mayor's budget proposal.

"I don't think that that goes far enough and is really responsive to what the Racial Justice Alliance has asked for in terms of its demands. The demand was really to reduce sworn officers by 30%," said Max Tracy, P-Burlington City Council.

"But you have to understand that a declaration that we should reduce the police spending by 30 percent isn't a plan," said Joan Shannon, D-Burlington City Council. "It does take working out the details of how things are going to work and how do you get there."

The City Council will not vote on that proposal until June 29. Council President Max Tracy says they must have their budget finalized by July 1.