I just got off the phone with the Police Commission and the meeting to discuss the SF Special Police is this Wed September 1st. I did my best to pitch Oct 6th but they were resolute saying that if the meeting will be rescheduled, it will be announced at this Wednesday's meeting.
Libertarian Party of San Francisco
Thank you, Mike. Yep, the meeting is scheduled for Sep 1. I am showing up, and if the Commissioners allow public input, I will tell them taxpayers are looking for solutions, and the Patrol Specials could be a solution to the City's economic woes.
Today's Examiner has a cover story about a new report critical of the
Specials (presumably the forthcoming report Ann was talking about)
that is quite unfair to the group, with very negative headlines both
on the cover ("Cops-for-hire called unwieldy") inside the paper
("Patrol Specials drain city funds"), and online ("Report: Patrol
Specials drain city funds").
I posted a comment online and encourage others to weigh in too -- http://www.sfexaminer.com/local/Patrol-Specials-drain-city-funds-101948958.html
One wonders about the timing of this hatchet job, given the Police
Commission's pending review of the program. Speaking of which, is the
Police Commission scheduled to discuss the Patrol Specials today? If
so, when and where is this meeting taking place?
Love & Liberty,
((( starchild )))
Here you go Starchild....I cannot attend.
What are the details for Wednesday night? Time/Place...
5:30 pm City Hall Fourth Floor room 400. However there are a few other items then the entire rest of hours will be presentation and response (public comment). Lokley the report will begin about 6 pm is my guess but could be 6:30. I have heard meetings running to midnight...one can never say. Bring snacks and a book and observe law being made sort of...like sausage....
There will not be a decision on the Patrol Specials Weds, but a 'discussion' as said.. So entering evidence Weds. via testimony and documents is very important because then they go to work and redraft the regulations (which already are too many from my Libertarian stance) and hold a final hearing (then it is too late!). I would say that this date above any later dates is the most significant of all. Usually by the time the city attorney has drafted regulations and there is a public hearing, it is way too late. They just take testimony and vote on it anyway. I hope you understand.
You might consider giving Marcy a letter of your concerns and support and ask her to introduce it into the public record at the end of her comments? They will take written testimony in case you cannot come. I'll let Marcy know in case you wish to do just that. Of course we would like to have you come and speak for 1 to 3 min but no more as they 'ding' you quite unceremoniously.
I just posted this on the Examiner site.
Ann and Marcy.....you are free to enter this comment into the record at the meeting tonight. I wish in retrospect that I had spent more time covering the issue of "draining city funds"...wait, I just posted another reply. Both are below and can be submitted tonight.
Yes, San Francisco should be embracing and supporting the Patrol Specials and all efforts on the part of the citizens to take more control over their own security. Due to the incredible cost of the SFPD, the public would be much better off if the SFPD would see themselves more as educators and staff to support civilian efforts to provide for their own security rather than enforce a role as an expensive monopolistic service provider. The same goes for the Firefighters. We need more public involvement in providing services to the communities. We need an environment where the citizens are encouraged to come forward and fill in the gaps which are many. The Special Patrols are a well-established mechanism for this that is a part of San Francisco's historical character since the gold rush. San Francisco is a town that embraces and preserves it's interesting past. Given the support the patrols get from the communities and merchants, they should be encouraged. The Special Patrols are providing for public safety the way the public wants to buy it. SFPD efforts to push the Special Patrols aside make them appear to be more interested in fighting the "competition" than they are interested in fighting crime and supporting the interests of the taxpayers.
Michael Denny - Richmond District
The idea that $300,000 per year is "draining City funds" from our bloated $6.55B (2010) budget is absolutely ridiculous. Why does City Hall always chose to "punish" the taxpayer/citizens first when responding to a budget crisis rather than looking deep inside its own bloated self and doing what must be done. In a City so concerned with "sustainability", this City's current approach to providing services including the SFPD and Firefighters is certainly "Unsustainable".
Read more at the San Francisco Examiner: http://www.sfexaminer.com/local/Patrol-Specials-drain-city-funds-101948958.html#ixzz0yITe4PI8
Read more at the San Francisco Examiner: http://www.sfexaminer.com/local/Patrol-Specials-drain-city-funds-101948958.html#ixzz0yIPPTOCQ
Starchild and I attended the Police Commission meeting tonight, and we gave our public comments. Starchild was great, as always, speaking in favor of private enterprise and competition. I was a little overwhelmed by the event! However, I managed to get on the record that we taxpayers are looking for solutions to the City budget mess and the Patrol Specials should be viewed as a tool; also, the SFPD 10(b) program makes the Patrol Specials' "drain on City resources" pale by comparison.
I thought the Commissioners were interested on the subject, and asked a ton of good questions. They voluntarily clarified that the report under discussion dealt with the interests (mission and values) of the SFPD. They requested a subsequent meeting that would allow the Patrol Specials to specifically state the benefits they bring to the City.
My personal view of the report presented tonight is that we taxpayers just spent a load of money for the researcher to state the obvious from the perspective of the SFPD. You do not need a fancy report to figure that if SFPD officers can get significant overtime pay by volunteering on the 10(b) program, whey would not want the Patrol Specials to mussel in on that lucrative task. The researcher cleverly side stepped this obvious situation by focusing only on the similarities of the Patrols to private security guards.
My point here is that if we do not show up and present our views, nobody will know our views, and the powers that be will feel free to going with the views of whoever does show up. The Special Patrols showed up! They and their supporters packed the room! Good for them!
P.S. - I listed the name of the group issuing the report incorrectly
in the message below. The correct name is the Public Safety Strategies
Group, and the woman who presented before the Police Commission was
Also, the reason I said "it looks pretty ominous" is that the
commissioners appeared to me to be giving the report's recommendations
their serious consideration. Although they cannot outright abolish the
Patrol Specials themselves because the group is in the City Charter,
they could recommend that it be abolished or impose rules that would
further destroy it. This would be a blow to freedom.
Love & Liberty,
((( starchild )))