TPD to Lay Off 21 Officers

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Updated: 10/27/2009 3:56 pm Published: 10/26/2009 7:29 pm

Tulsa Police Chief Ron Palmer confirms the department will lay off 21 officers from the force, as it tries to trim $2 million from its budget.  But even if the department lays off 21 officers, a federal grant that was approved earlier this month, will still allow the department to hire 18 of those laid off officers back.
But that means the department would still be 3 officers lighter.  This is where they're hoping to make up the $2 million, in addition to other cost-cutting measures.
Mayor Kathy Taylor has been looking to cut millions more from the budget, following a sharp drop in sales tax revenue.  Friday was the deadline for all department heads to submit their ideas for cutting costs.  In her report to council tomorrow, the mayor will reveal where those cuts will come from.
The city as a whole needs to trim $6 million from the original budget plan.  That's on top of $10 million worth of cuts made when that budget plan went into effect July 1st, which required city workers to take 8 furlough days.
The second round of cuts follow a steep drop in September sales tax receipts, which came in more than 5% below expectations.
Unlike the police department, the fire department says it should be able to avoid layoffs through other cost-cutting moves.
Chief Ron Palmer says if TPD has to lay off people, departments would be restructured and those working in special divisions would be moved to patrol division. 
Mayor Taylor says some of the less important departments may be asked to cut more than departments like police and fire, so the city can maintain public safety.

Tune in to Fox 23 News at 5:00 for more details.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

LaKeeta - 1/23/2010 10:20 PM
0 Votes
I lived in Minneapolis for 2 years. I never had to worry about Police especially downtown Minneapolis because there were always officers around, on foot, on Segways, patrol cars. The cold was one reason I moved back home to Tulsa, family is the other. Maybe Tulsa is the reason for the layoffs because there is simply not enough attractions here like in the bigger cities.

8bud500 - 10/27/2009 7:45 PM
0 Votes
Well, we needed a Ballpark alot more than we need the major resources like Police Officers and Firemen, at least according to Mayor Taylor. ONEOK Field is a new baseball park in Tulsa, Oklahoma, that is now under construction. Located in the historic Greenwood district adjacent to downtown Tulsa, it will be primarily used for baseball and will be the home of the Tulsa Drillers of the Texas League.[1] The ballpark was designed by architect firm Populous (formerly HOK Sport Venue Event) of Kansas City, Missouri. It is set to cost $39.2 million; the project also includes the purchase of adjacent land for complementary development, for a total project budget of $60 million. Hmmm how much of that $60 Mil could have helped the budget and kept TPD, TFD and other more important City workers on the job ???

MrGreen - 10/27/2009 5:18 PM
0 Votes
The majority wanted "change." This is just part of the result. You wanted it, now you gettin' it. It all trickels down...from Washington DC right down to little old Tulsa. Better hang on tight cause it's just getting started.

thinkr047 - 10/27/2009 5:14 PM
0 Votes
This is COMPLETELY unacceptable for the citizens of Tulsa! Why in the world can the city of Tulsa NOT manage their money? Everyone else in the free world is expected to pay there bills, but the city isn't? And when they don't pay those bills the rest of us get to suffer! This city needs police men and women to protect us from all of the crime that is taking over this city, with less police out on the streets the problems are going to multiply to extreme levels. I was just watching this story on Fox23 news, and Mayor Taylor states to the building of the Bok center and the new ballpark has nothing to do with the lack of funds. Well, I have to completely disagree with the Mayor. The city of Tulsa is spending MILLIONS of dollars on a new stadium which they DON'T need! Further, that money could be used to save the jobs of these police men and women that provide protection for all of us! I just can't hardly believe this is happening, it is WRONG! I certainly do not feel sorry for the City of Tulsa and there budget shortfall, because frankly I don't believe they know what there doing, or how to create a budget and stick to it. I do feel very sorry for the men and women losing there jobs.

mbow2003 - 10/27/2009 7:19 AM
0 Votes
This is the WORST thing they could do!! Taking away the specialty units obviously saves the city a lot of money! Just wait until they are gone and the city really hurts. This is one last 'slap the police officers in the face' for the mayor before she leaves. I know that the "days off" for these officers probably won't be voted for again because it has caused so much trouble already!! Hello Mayor....leave the people that protect us ALONE!!!

kindagreywolf - 10/27/2009 12:31 AM
0 Votes
Cool! It's 11:30pm and I just saw a Black Male walking down the street with a rifle. 3rd call to 911 and its still busy. By the time I get through, it will take the police at least an hour to respond and we are going to lay them off. Oh the Irony.

probergal - 10/26/2009 9:49 PM
0 Votes
The sales tax is down because no one working for the city can afford to shop. All the days off hurt everyone of these families.
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