Dallas Police PAY is the most IMPORTANT issue for new City of Dallas budget
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Our Request: We respectfully ask that Dallas City Manager T.C. Broadnax, Mayor Mike Rawlings, and the entire City Council work to ensure that all personnel and equipment needs of the Dallas Police Department take precedence over everything else in the upcoming review and approval of the 2018-2019 and 2019-2020 fiscal budgets.
Background: Over the past 24 months, the Dallas Police Department has suffered the loss of 6 officers plus countless injuries to other officers in addition to having hundreds of others that have either left or retired from the force.
Local law enforcement suffered the tragic loss of 5 officers on July 7, 2016 who were simply working to ensure the safety of protestors in downtown. The officers were gunned down by a cowardly sniper and several other officers were injured. This crime, here in Dallas, was the deadliest incident for U.S. law enforcement since the 9/11 attacks.
The officers lost on July 7, 2016 include:
- DPD Senior Cpl. Lorne Ahrens
- DPD Officer Michael Krol
- DPD Sgt. Michael Smith
- DART PD Officer Brent Thompson
- DPD Officer Patricio "Patrick" Zamarripa
Then, on April 24, 2018, rookie Officer Rogelio Santander was shot at almost point blank range by a shoplifter; his partner, Crystal Almeida was shot in the face and seriously injured.
Now, on July 21, 2018, the community mourns the loss of DPD Senior Cpl. Earl "Jamie" Givens who lost his life due to being hit by an alleged drunk driver as he was helping to escort to the final resting place the body of another DPD Officer that had succumbed to cancer.
If the loss and injuries of so many officers in such a brief time wasn't enough, there is also the situation of the extreme mismanagement of the police officer's pension fund through bad investments. Granted, the State of Texas forced the City to accept a solution to ensure the fund was on the path to being refunded; however, that solution will take years to be addressed and the pension fund had been the proverbial carrot for years to attract good candidates to the force since the average pay wasn’t as strong as surrounding communities.
Current Situation: Without this lucrative pension, with a depleted police force, and lower pay than many surrounding cities and towns, candidates are not signing up to work with DPD in the droves that they once were and this is placing an undue hardship on the officers that continue to work for DPD.
Our community has DPD Officers that are mentally, emotionally, and spiritually taxed to the hilt. We cannot in good conscious ask them to take on any more because, simply put, they have been through too much, too fast. We cannot ask them to accept any more half-measures in the way of solutions. We can no longer ask them to accept lower pay than surrounding communities; DPD pay must be as competitive or better than the surrounding communities.
Conclusion: There is no issue in the City of Dallas that should be taking precedence over this and we, the citizens, and our elected and hired officials, owe it to our police officers to ensure the budgets for fiscal years 2018-2019 and 2019-2020 have the needs of DPD placed above and beyond any other item on the proposed budgets.
Therefore, we respectfully ask for the Dallas City Manager, Mayor, and City Council to do their utmost in ensuring the personnel and equipment needs of the Dallas Police Department are addressed and funded in their entirety in the budgets for FY 2018-2019 and 2019-2010.
Deep Ellum Community Watch & Deep Ellum Neighbors Association Board of Directors
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