- New York City 04/24/2014 by Linda Perry (WBAI)
The City Council unveiled its preliminary budget recommendations for 2015. Some of it is surprising.
They want to hire an additional 1.000 police officers. Vanessa Gibson, new Councilmember from the Bronx and Chair of the Council's Committee on Public Safety says the city needs to focus on precinct resources. The NYPD has been using $600 million per year for overtime. Gibson says the City Council would rather see $200 million of that go to new positions.
NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton says he’d rather see pay raises than more cops, but he agrees with Gibson that they'd be useful in implementing Vision Zero, the plan to keep pedestrians in the city safe.
Councilmember Ydanis Rodriguez says a priority is to put back employment opportunities for summer youth the Bloomberg administration took away.
Overall, the Council's priorities are ambitious: free school lunches for all students, strengthen the city's infrastructure, create new technology incubators to spur entrepreneurship in the outter boroughts, overhaul the city's property tax code, tackle the affordable housing crisis, increase anti-gun violence intitiatives and increase transparency in the capital budget. It says its budget recommendations seek to prioritize critical services and upgrade the quality of life for all New Yorkers.