S.F. Can’t Afford Major Police Reforms, Mayor Says


San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom says the cash-strapped city doesn’t have the tens of millions of dollars needed for the costliest recommendations in a new draft report urging reforms in the police department, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Newsom said the report by the Police Executive Research Forum provides a good road map for needed changes in the problem-plagued department. He added that one of the report’s proposals – calling for more foot patrols and heightened police presence in neighborhoods – would cost $41 million to cover the cost of hiring 268 new officers. “I couldn’t be more pleased with this report,” Newsom told The Chronicle. “But I am not convinced we can find $41 million next year. I would be lying to people if I said that.”

The draft report was requested by Newsom in 2006 after the Chronicle reported that about 100 officers had resorted to using force on citizens far more often than their peers. A key recommended reform is to increase the time officers spend on community policing – working with neighborhoods on problem-solving approaches to crime. One scenario suggests making more time for community policing by cutting the time officers spend responding to calls for service from the average of 42.5 percent to 30 percent of their workweek.

Link: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2008/11/03/MNGR13S21K.DTL

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