The Austin City Council just voted to cut its police department budget by $150 million. This comes after months of criticism behind officers and the city’s top cops over the killing of unarmed George Floyd. The defunding of law enforcement in favor of redistributing the funds to social services has been a left-leaning agenda pushed by liberal media outlets for months now.
The decision from the Austin Police Department came after the death of Mike Ramos and the use of force against Black Lives Matter protesters. The council voted in July to limit the officer’s use of force. This includes restrictions on use of deadly force and a ban on using less lethal munitions during protests.
“Unfortunately, the targets of this ‘cancelling’ are the brave men and women who selflessly put their lives on the line to keep our families safe. The city council’s action to slash funding disregards the safety of our capital city, its citizens, and the many guests who frequent it,” Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said.
Immediate cuts from the budget slash would include funding from three planned police cadet classes and pushing those funds to areas like violence prevention, food access, and abortion access programs.
Another $80 million in cuts would be redistributed to forensics sciences, civilian functions, and alternative forms of public safety and community support. The city council seeks a more appropriate recruitment program, despite the fact that Austin’s police department is already severely understaffed as is. The problem is getting worse with more than 180 vacancies and the department’s budget slash.
The best deterrents to crime is a visible police presence, but it doesn’t look like that will be happening anytime soon as more and more officers retire from the force. You can look at crime stats and police vacancies and see that the more open spots you have, the less safe the city is.
Austin’s police department needs more support from their city, not less. The city council is also considering delaying certain cadet classes, depending on the outcome of race and discrimination investigations they have going on. Any suggested changes would also delay the classes, meaning less officers would be graduating and getting into the police force.
This ill-advised effort at virtue signaling will endanger the lives of people in Austin. Cutting the police budget is telling the world that public safety doesn’t matter and that the states can’t really do much to curb the far-left agendas being thrown at them.
Instead of funding for cops to kill, the Dems now want to use those funds for their social service pet projects. It’s never been about the victims of police brutality. We’ll just have to wait for the council members to be the first victims of violent criminals to see that slashing the budget will never keep their communities safe.