City-county councilors consider increasing IMPD’s 2021 budget

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INDIANAPOLIS — During a roughly six-hour Indianapolis City-County Council committee meeting, IMPD presented a budget proposal for roughly $261 million.

That is more than a $7 million increase for next year.

The increase will go toward already approved salary increases for IMPD officers with certain years of service, fully funding 1,743 IMPD officers, additional body worn camera expenses, leases and legal settlements, vehicles, and equipment such as a drone, motorcycle, and replacement bomb suits.

During her presentation, Deputy Chief Valerie Cunningham also delivered a budgeting for equity portion of the proposal. She was adamant that having funding to hire a diverse recruit team is critical.

“[It] allows us to be aggressive in our recruiting of people that are lining up to commit to this profession at this very challenging time,” Cunningham said. “Having the courage to get up there and raise their hand and say they want to do this are the ones that want to reform this profession to what the community and people are crying for.”

The public submitted dozens of pages of comments, mainly calling for defunding police. While no councilors on the Public Safety Committee expressed interest in defunding IMPD, many said they would like to see an increase in funding for mental health services within our community.

The next hearing for the public safety committee is on Oct. 7.

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