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City Jobs Being Eliminated Include Needed Police Vacancies

By Marcus Gilmer in News on Oct 1, 2008 4:15PM

2008_10_01_cpd.jpgLast week, we wrote about the shortage of police officers as crime in the city was rising, a correlation Mayor Daley denied. In keeping with his line of (faulty?) thought, a number of the proposed job vacancies being eliminated in the City's attempt to get it's $420 million budget under control includes several hundred police positions. According to the Sun Times, "the Chicago Police Department has 329 sworn vacancies and 424 openings for non-sworn police employees. That's in addition to the 705 officers on medical leave and 625 officers on limited or convalescent duty status." These vacancies would be eliminated in spite of Daley's promise earlier this year to add more officers to the force.

Understandably, none of this sits well with Fraternal Order of Police President Mark Donahue, who said:

It's a stupid move at a time when violent crime is on the rise in Chicago. We recently lost two police officers -- and now, the mayor is gonna further reduce the numbers. This mayor -- or somebody in his administration -- needs to stop by midnight roll calls anywhere in the city and observe the number of one-man cars that are patrolling our city streets during some of the busiest hours.
For his part, Daley would only say, "We're looking at every department...You cannot say, 'These are sacred cows. Nothing can happen to them.' You take out 60, 70 percent of your budget. You can't do that." Note to Donahue: next time, make sure you mention how this might affect the city's 2016 Olympic bid. Then you might actually see some results.