Chicago Mayor Boosts Police Spending to $1.9 Billion

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Mayor Lori Lightfoot unveiled a $16.7 billion spending plan that boosts funding for police and relies on federal money to help fill the city’s budget hole as she seeks to move Chicago past the ongoing pandemic and to address rampant gun violence, reports the Chicago Tribune.

Lightfoot’s 2022 budget boosts police spending to $1.9 billion, up from $1.7 billion in 2021, a move that will likely be criticized by some as elected officials debate the best way to address the city’s violence, which has remained elevated after surging in 2020 to some of the highest levels in decades. The mayor opened her budget address Monday by invoking a series of deep Chicago problems, including a wide life expectancy gap between Black and white residents, systemic racism and rampant heroin use in parts of the city. Among other initiatives are $103 million for health spending, including in-home services to new moms and victims of gender-based violence and $85 million for various violence prevention programs.

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