New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and the City Council passed the city’s $88.1 billion budget, which includes slashing $1 billion from the NYPD.

From The New York Post:

The substantial cuts to the NYPD came in response to demonstrations seeking to defund the department in the wake of George Floyd’s death at the hands of police in Minneapolis.

The effects will include, in part, reducing overtime by $352 million and trimming the size of the police force by 1,163 cops, which Mayor Bill de Blasio insisted would not decrease public safety despite a recent surge in shootings.

A large chunk of the NYPD cuts — $349.5‬ million — was realized by transferring the department’s school safety and crossing guard functions to other city agencies.

Johnson promised the shift was indicative of a larger policy shift in how schools and students are policed.

The budget passed with a 32-17 vote.

Councilman Donovan Richards (D-Queens) voted against the budget:

“My concern with this budget is not just about the $1 billion cut, but more about the NYPD’s culture,” said Richards, chairman of the committee that oversees the NYPD and the prohibitive favorite to become the next Queens borough president.

“A $1 billion budget cut can’t address the racism that runs rampant in the NYPD,” he said.

“We must send a clear message that it’s not okay to kettle peaceful protesters, that it’s not okay to place black and brown New Yorkers in a chokehold as they gasp for air.”

Added Richards: “We must send a clear message that it’s not okay to shoot unarmed black men like Sean Bell and Ramarley Graham.”

NYC Council Minority Whip Joseph Borelli reminded everyone that violence has escalated in the city and the cuts will make it worse. He noted that New Yorkers witnessed “72 shootings last week alone, and not one shot by [a] NYPD officer.”

Demonstrators and protesters have camped out in City Hall Park for about a week, demanding the council defund the NYPD.

They clashed with officers yesterday ahead of the vote:

Police say 18-year-old Dominique Tombeau was caught spray painting the statue on 31 Chambers Street at 2:40 a.m. Tuesday.

Tombeau has been charged with making graffiti, resisting arrest, obstructing governmental administration, criminal mischief, reckless endangerment, criminal tampering and disorderly conduct.

Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said there were “incidents of vandalism,” “graffiti on some of the statues” and “attempts to damage some cameras” used by police.

Officers arrested a man they say punched an officer in the face and head with his fist around 5:45 a.m. Joseph Konnaris, 20, of Queens, is charged with assault, menacing, disorderly conduct and harassment.

A third arrest, for disorderly conduct, is pending.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortex, who represents the Bronx and Queens, rejected the budget. She wants to defund the police:

The protesters and demonstrators hate the new budget. Activist Jawanza James Williams said they “are being gaslit” and it shows “they don’t understand what we’re saying.”

The NYPD and protesters had another clash Wednesday morning:

Police in riot gear descended on protesters camped outside City Hall early Wednesday, just hours after the City Council voted to slash the NYPD’s funding by $1 billion.

Posts on social media show cops making several arrests as they pull away barricades that penned in the protesters demanding massive cuts to the NYPD.

Several dozen cops encircled the penned in protesters beginning at 5:30 a.m. before moving in and removing barricades, protesters said on Twitter.

Cops moved in after protesters decided to keep occupying City Hall Park even after the City Council passed a budget just after 12 a.m. that slashes the NYPD’s funding by about $1 billion.

“They are surrounding the camp with riot police after protesters voted to keep the camp,” poster Left Voice wrote on Twitter.

Another poster said that cops brought chain saws to clear the barricades, but it wasn’t immediately clear if they were used.

The police retreated from the protesters after the clash. Protesters screamed, “Whose Streets? Our streets!” Others sang to the cops, “Na na na na, hey hey hey, goodbye.”

 

 
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