Better East Texas: Austin police funding

Published: Sep. 10, 2020 at 5:08 PM CDT
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EAST TEXAS (KLTV/KTRE) - Urban protests and violent demonstrations continue across the land. Police departments are facing unyielding pressure to make sure there is not even a hint of abuse. It is a challenge that will be with us for the foreseeable future.

The issue of funding and defunding police departments will continue to be a topic for municipalities as well. Recently, the City of Austin passed a budget that cut funding to the Austin Police department. While some of the money will go toward reimagining what the police department should be and shouldn’t be, there are some immediate and near-term cuts that are leaving citizens vulnerable.

Violent crime is up across that city and you don’t have to go far to see the impact that relaxed homeless policies are having on the city’s culture.

Governor Greg Abbott is considering moving the Austin Police under the administration of the State of Texas – specifically the Department of Public Safety. This is a controversial move but one that would return some comfort to many Austin citizens.

The bi-partisan proposal came from former lawmakers and it is gaining traction. It has been said before in this segment that you just can’t defund without a plan. And Austin still doesn’t have a plan to keep its citizens safe. And as the economy emerges post-Covid, there will be more need, not less, for city services including police.

More traffic, more crime, more mental health calls, more of those challenges that police face every day. So, we will see where the Governor ends up and if the State of Texas will be policing Austin.

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