Los Angeles County Sheriff released the following defiant statement after Los Angeles proposed cutting the law enforcement budget by $145.4 million dollars.
The proposal would also completely eliminate the special victims bureau.
— Alex Villanueva (@LACoSheriff) June 28, 2020
Fox News reports as governments nationwide move forward with plans to shift funds away from law enforcement in the aftermath of George Floyd’s police-involved death last month, Los Angeles CEO Sachi Hamai has put forward a proposed budget with recommendations to cut some $145.4 million allocated to local police.
The bid, which would entail eliminating six units from the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department, earned a sharp rebuke from County Sheriff Alex Villanueva over the weekend.
“The budget cuts are targeted specifically to hurt public safety while sparing virtually every other function of county government from any reductions,” Villanueva stated. “These cuts come at a time when jails were de-populated of over five thousand inmates in order to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. Now that restrictions are lifting, violent crimes, such as murder, are on the rise across the County. Now is not the time to cut vital law enforcement services, that should be the last thing cut.”
The CEO’s proposed budget, as per the LASD, recommends the following LASD units be eliminated:
• Safe Streets Bureau (Gang Enforcement)
• Parks Bureau
• Special Victims Bureau (Sexual/Physical Abuse of Children, Rape, Human Trafficking)
• Community Partnership Bureau (COPS Team)
• Fraud and Cybercrimes Bureau
• Major Crimes Bureau
According to Villanueva, the CEO also advocates for drastically reducing Custody Operations (various units) and Mental Health Evaluation Teams (MET) – accusing the leadership of merely seeking to cover up their own financial planning errors.
“The CEO and the Board have embraced the ‘Defund the Police’ movement and are cynically hiding behind accounting maneuvers, knowing well that loss of revenue in sales tax can be made up by equitably distributing more stable revenue streams like property taxes. This is not acceptable and a willful abandonment of one of the top priorities of all local government, keeping people safe,” he continued. “Curiously, the bloated county bureaucracy remains virtually intact, which should always be the first to suffer reductions. The priorities of the Board of Supervisors are not the priorities of the good people of Los Angeles County.”