Mayor Addresses Birmingham Police Department (BPD) Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) Request for New Police Cars
Director of Communications
This week the Birmingham City Council passed the City’s new budget for Fiscal Year 2016. The budget included critical funds needed for neighborhood and community clean up needs, weed abatement and cost of living increases for City Employees. However, did not include critical infrastructure needs for the Birmingham Police Department.
In May, the Mayor’s office asked for $1.9 million for new police cars for the Birmingham Police Department (BPD). The item did not pass. The FOP and the BPD this week asked the Mayor to intervene.
“Our police officers go above and beyond every day for the citizens of this City. We are in the position of not having enough cars for our officers and running existing cars 24/7. We need this problem addressed and addressed this fiscal year,” said Mayor William Bell.
“This vehicle purchase is absolutely critical for our law enforcement operations. Our patrol beat vehicles are driven 23 hours a day, 365 days a year and are often referred to as ‘hot seat’ vehicles. It’s unfortunate but this method means we have officers at the precincts waiting on the officers from the previous shift to drive in and hand them the keys so they can then drive the same vehicle back into the community. This means the vehicles have no down time and due to excessive wear and tear must be replaced sooner,” explained Birmingham Police Chief AC Roper.
$1.9 million will be on Monday’s Budget and Finance Committee with hopes of pulling the funds from fund balance.