Tucsonans Deserve Adequate Funding of Police
In a recent article in the Arizona Daily Star, it is reported that Tucson Police Chief Chris Magnus is pushing for Tucson’s police officers to get a pay raise to help with retention.
The Tucson City Charter states that Mayor and Council shall provide for a permanent police force, which shall consist of such number of policemen as the mayor and council shall, from time to time, deem necessary to preserve the peace, protect the lives and property of the citizens, and enforce the laws and ordinances within the city. Additionally, the council has the power to regulate all traffic of persons and vehicles upon any of the streets or highways of the city plus the promotion and protection of the health, comfort, safety, life, welfare and property of the inhabitants of the city, the preservation of peace and good order.
The city of Tucson continues to grow in both population and number of business while funding of the police department has not kept pace, leaving the department woefully underfunded and understaffed. Tucson currently has 813 sworn officers down from a high of 1113 a decade ago.
Police academy training classes have been reduced from the number offered in previous years; officers are fleeing to other departments that pay more; morale is suffering; there is an ongoing pension problem; and the department has only 500 patrol officers to deploy. It is reported that only 21 motorcycle officers are available to cover all shifts on all streets throughout Tucson’s 226.7 square miles. On a recent Saturday evening, one local business had a break-in, and after several hours waiting for the police the owner was informed that midtown had only five patrol officers on duty.
Tucson Business Owners, Inc. supports increased funding of the Tucson Police Department. As the Tucson City Council continues to work on the upcoming city budget, TUBO advocates for a major increase in funds to be allocated for TPD challenging the City Council to target 1000 officers by 2025. Let your voice be heard, email the mayor and council with your support for increased funding for police: email@example.com
ARIZONA DAILY STAR February 13, 2021
TUCSON CITY CODE: