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Budget hearing held to discuss $19 million increase for San Diego Police

San Diego detectives investigating death of man in police custody
Posted at 11:44 AM, May 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-07 14:44:59-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Part of Mayor Todd Gloria’s budget proposal includes a $19 million increase for the San Diego Police Department.

Today, during the city’s budget committee hearing, representatives from the San Diego Police Department laid out the reasons why they need this funding.

They say they’ve been hit by the pandemic too. For instance, not getting money from overseeing events is hurting their bottom line. So they need the city to help make up that difference.

They also say paying pensions is a big chunk of their budget. They have to pay $15.1 million in obligated pension payments.

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Keara Piña, a member of the Community Budget Alliance, was among the many callers who weighed in during the hearing with her opinion about funding for the police.

She believes the money should be reallocated to other projects and departments suggesting that some Police responsibilities should be reassigned.

"This year, instead of adding to an already bloated police budget, we want to do the reimagining of public safety funding alternative to policing, community care, housing, equitable job opportunities, parks and long term programs like youth and young adult violence intervention programs," said Piña.

ABC 10News reached out to Mayor Gloria about the police funding concerns. And his office sent a statement saying:

"Funding the police department aligns with the notion that police practices must evolve and still allows us to invest in our communities. With violence increasing in San Diego, I have proposed a sensible budget that will make our city safer."

The council has until June to finalize the budget.