Phoenix to discuss police department restructuring plan

PHOENIX - Will it make your neighborhood safer, or slow down police response times? That's the question at the center of a growing debate involving the Phoenix Police Department.

Phoenix police and city officials will meet Monday to discuss the police departments restructuring plan.

Police union officials said the restructuring will redraw precinct boundaries. Eliminating squads, moving officers and making precincts bigger.

Phoenix Law Enforcement Association treasurer Will Buividas said it's a move that will give police more resources.

"I think you're going to see response times getting better because we will have more officers there to get to calls faster," said Buividas.

Critics of the plan aren't so sure though. Phoenix city councilman Sal DiCiccio said the math doesn't add up.

"We've lost 500 officers since 2008. Now you're going to have less officers covering a bigger areas which means less protection for neighborhoods," said DiCiccio.

Full details of the plan have not been released but so far the restructuring would eliminate 24 squads and sergeant positions and move them into other areas.

Union officials insist that no jobs will be lost during the restructuring process and that jobs would be rebid during the redistricting.

Monday’s meeting is just the first of many. After the meeting with city council staff, meetings with city council members and public comment meetings will also have to be held.

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