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Lansing council member pushes to defund the police

Published: Jul. 13, 2020 at 11:25 PM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) -

A Lansing City Council Member is pushing to defund the police department on Monday night during a zoom council meeting.

During the public comment portion there was a lot of support coming from the public.

“It’s not their money, it’s ours. 49 odd million dollars for the police. We have to ask what are we getting for all this money? I don’t think we are getting what we should be for that money,” said Lansing Resident.

City Council Member Brandon Betz brought the global discussion local by introducing a resolution to take action here in Lansing. The measure would create a committee of community members that would find ways to reduce the police budget and reinvest those funds into other city programs. The committee would then make recommendations to the city council on how to do that.

“I think that we can have a police department. We can just not fund it. I think that that is the answer. If there’s no way for us to disband the police department per se, we can just not fund the police department and have a different department that we fund for public safety,” said council member Betz.

City council members remained silent about the resolution, while others voiced their thoughts. Some on the other side of the debate say they think defunding the police would be a mistake.

“I think it’s a misguided attempt to try to solve societal ill that took generations to occur over a 5 year time period. By stealing money, if you will, from police. If the public is genuinely interested in accomplishing these goals they need to commit to funding them out of pocket through taxes, milages or check off boxes on their tax forms,” said a Lansing resident.

Council member Betz says he understands his plan would come at a price and likely mean less police officers on the street.

There was no word on when the city council plans to vote on the resolution to defund the Lansing Police Department.

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