Reflections on the 2020 Budget and our Collective Work in 2019

  • In a dramatic departure from the addition of nine officers last year, the 2020 budget DOES NOT add any new officers and reduces the sworn force by five.
  • Instead of hiring more cops, the mayor’s supplemental budget invested in public health programming like the Healing Streets initiative and CURE Violence approach and restorative justice efforts, like the ETHOS Restorative Justice Program.
  • In contrast to investing in misguided, surveilling technology like Shot Spotter, the supplemental budget added significant resources toward street-level intervention from community ambassadors and community mental health responders (not embedded in the police department).
  • Rather than doubling down with more funding for police, the supplemental budget invests nearly $500,000 in targeted youth employment programming, funds to ensure recreation center programming stays free, and a pilot for our community members returning from incarceration.
  • Instead of redirecting dollars from a police department that already consumes one-third of the General Fund, additional funding for the supplemental public safety budget will come from an increase in property taxes that will hit hardest in the communities that are most impacted by violence and harm.
  • Instead of building funding for community-led safety into the base budget, for long-term, durable investments, the funding for public health approaches are included in the supplemental budget.
  • A proposal to redirect $200,000 from a parking fund to resource a pilot grant process for community-based gun violence prevention efforts failed.
  • The budget includes no funding to rehire a community-first public safety director to coordinate city efforts and work with the county or resources for a community-first public safety cabinet that would guide the assessment of our city’s needs, gaps, and opportunities, and administer resources to prevent and heal harm.
  • While the more than $1 million committed to community safety, restorative justice and economic development is significant, it is still less than 1% of the funding for SPPD.

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Root & Restore St Paul

Root & Restore St Paul

We are a citywide collaboration of individuals and organizations working to advance police accountability, community-defined safety, and racial justice.