Lansing residents attended a budget hearing on Tuesday night at the Southside Community Center. Some were there to get answers from the administration and council members, but others made sure their voices were heard.
Mike Morofsky lives in the Colonial Village area and spoke out at the meeting. He says he and several other concerned residents started patrolling the neighborhood voluntarily after officers were laid off last year. Now, he's furious to hear money from the police millage may not be spent entirely on hiring officers.
"There are people trying to give people the sense that they're not all alone...you can't have enough police officers," Morofsky said.
Other residents say they understand the money is not set aside exclusively for personnel. Lansing resident Kathy Tobe voted for the millage and thinks how the mayor wants to spend the money is fair game.
"Police do need cars, they do need equipment to do their jobs. The idea is that they will be in their vehicles on the street," Tobe said.
The public safety issue is stirring debate within the community and is also a crucial topic for third ward council member A'Lynne Robinson.
"That is something that's extremely crucial to the south end of town as we are trying to make sure the quality of life for such a large population of people is kept at the level they've become accustomed to."
Councilmember Robinson is urging residents to speak out before the budget gets voted on.
"Anything that a neighbor says that has some credence, that has been researched...I think is certainly going to weigh heavily with those of us that anticipate that we will be making some changes or adjustments to the budget," Robinson said.
Council hopes to vote on the budget by May 14th, though the deadline isn't until May 21st.