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So cutting the polic force to help the budget, good idea?

Two months after Camden, NJ, laid off 160 police officers, city prosecutors have released a sobering report showing a dramatic rise in violent crime in the drug-and-crime-ridden city of 80,000 residents.

Aggravated assaults with firearms jumped 259 percent in January and February compared to last year, and violent crime over all is up 19 percent, the Camden County Prosecutor's Office told the Philadelphia Inquirer. Murders and robberies, however, were down for the period.

"I can't tell you we're seeing an increase in crime because of the layoffs," Thomas Garrity Jr., the prosecutor's office investigations chief, told the paper. "I do know we have the perfect storm that includes a sluggish economy, the proliferation of national gangs, and a reduction of police manpower throughout the county."


Many other municipal and state governments find themselves reckoning with similar challenges. In recent months, mayors and governors have been significantly cutting what are usually considered untouchable services like cops, teachers, and basic medical care. Michigan officials say Detroit must close half of its schools, and officials are debating a proposal to let classroom sizes shoot up to an average of 60 students. Arizona is denying lifesaving organ transplants to people on state Medicaid rolls. Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's budget proposal slashes $1 billion to schools and local governments over two years and cuts 1,200 state jobs. California Gov. Jerry Brown is proposing $12.5 billion in cuts to social services, universities, and other programs while asking for a $9.3 billion tax hike over the next five years.

These state-level cuts will trickle down to cities and towns, exacerbating huge budget deficits like Camden's

Answer Question
 
sweet-a-kins

Asked by sweet-a-kins at 10:36 AM on Mar. 8, 2011 in Politics & Current Events

Level 34 (67,502 Credits)
Answers (31)
  • sweet-a-kins

    Comment by sweet-a-kins (original poster) at 10:36 AM on Mar. 8, 2011

  • Cincinnati has cut police and fire fighters.
    tiddliwinks

    Answer by tiddliwinks at 10:37 AM on Mar. 8, 2011

  • No, not a good idea, but if you don't have the funds to pay them, what do you do?
    scout_mom

    Answer by scout_mom at 10:37 AM on Mar. 8, 2011

  • They probably should have cut from another dept, and unless they already had done that with no other choice then its was a bad idea.
    gemgem

    Answer by gemgem at 10:39 AM on Mar. 8, 2011

  • My town got rid of our Police force nearly 20 years ago. The next town over takes care of us and so far it's worked fine. In fact not only has our town done it but so has the one on the other side of us. There simply isn't a need for that many police around here, we have almost no crime.

    Now, I don't know about this particular area, but it works in my town just great!
    SabrinaMBowen

    Answer by SabrinaMBowen at 10:39 AM on Mar. 8, 2011

  • And residents are wasting their time, sources say, if they report nonviolent serious crimes. "If you're not shot or murdered, or if it does not involve a drug gang, it's not going to be investigated," another anonymous cop told the Times. An anti-crime group called The Guardian Angels volunteered to patrol the streets after January's layoffs.


    Camden Mayor Dana Redd said 100 police officers could have kept their jobs if they took a 20 percent wage cut. The officers instead agreed to a wage freeze and unpaid leave days, which was rejected. Sixty-seven firefighters and 100 clerks were also axed in an attempt to close the city's $26.5 million deficit,  The Camden public library was shut down as well.

    sweet-a-kins

    Comment by sweet-a-kins (original poster) at 10:39 AM on Mar. 8, 2011

  • My town got rid of our Police force nearly 20 years ago. The next town over takes care of us and so far it's worked fine


    This is one of the poorest and most dangerous cities, getting rid of fire fighters and cops isn't a positive

    sweet-a-kins

    Comment by sweet-a-kins (original poster) at 10:40 AM on Mar. 8, 2011

  •  

    They probably should have cut from another dept, and unless they already had done that with no other choice then its was a bad idea.

    The dems in the state are trying to cut state employee perks....

    sweet-a-kins

    Comment by sweet-a-kins (original poster) at 10:41 AM on Mar. 8, 2011

  •  

    Cincinnati has cut police and fire fighters.

    They cut FF as well

    sweet-a-kins

    Comment by sweet-a-kins (original poster) at 10:41 AM on Mar. 8, 2011

  • I would start with cutting salaries of the Mayors and Maybe Fire cheif, chief of police, and people like that. Maybe people who get paid a bit too much for their jobs (Admins of various depts) and do it for the good of the people. From there Id take health insurance and any other perks, then look again to see what else could be cut. Cutting LE services is probably the last thing that should be done.
    gemgem

    Answer by gemgem at 10:43 AM on Mar. 8, 2011

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