ACLU opposes OPC budget cut 04/22/11
Eure opposes budget cut for OPC 04/08/11
OPC Annual Report for FY 2010 03/17/11
GLAA opposes budget cut for Office of Police Complaints
GAY AND LESBIAN ACTIVISTS ALLIANCE OF WASHINGTON
Fighting for Equal Rights Since 1971
P. O. Box 75265
Washington, D.C. 20013
(202) 667-5139 †
Friday, April 22, 2011
The Honorable Phil Mendelson, Chairperson
Committee on the Judiciary
Council of the District of Columbia
1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, D.C.† 20004
Re: Fiscal Year 2012 Appropriation for the Office of Police Complaints
Dear Chairperson Mendelson:
We are writing to oppose Mayor Grayís proposed reduction in the operating budget for the Office of Police Complaints (OPC) for Fiscal Year 2012, compared to a small proposed increase in the operating budget for the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD).
The growth in MPDís force will negatively impact OPCís investigator to sworn officer ratio, which is already lower than in other major cities such as San Francisco and New York. We remember all too well that the old Civilian Complaint Review Board was undermined by a mushrooming case backlog resulting from insufficient resources.
MPDís public safety mission is too important for its resources to be cut, but the same holds true for OPC. The value of this independent agency, which employs the best practices of citizen oversight of law enforcement, is reflected in the 5.8 percent increase in complaints and the 6.6 percent increase in case closings in Fiscal Year 2010 over the previous year.
The result of OPCís excellent work is not just the identification of areas for improvement or the adjudication of misconduct charges, but the confidence provided both to citizens and to the great majority of good officers that police misconduct complaints will receive impartial investigation and timely resolution. This builds a foundation for improved trust which can lead to increased citizen-police cooperation.
We therefore urge that OPC be treated similarly to MPD in your markup of the Fiscal Year 2012 budget, so that this vital agency can keep up with its caseload.
Richard J. Rosendall
Vice President for Political Affairs
cc: The Honorable Jack Evans
†††††† The Honorable Mary Cheh
†††††† The Honorable Muriel Bowser
†††††† The Honorable Marion Barry
†††††† Philip K. Eure, OPC
†††††† Fritz Mulhauser, ACLU of the Nationís Capital