by Staff Writer
Seattle – This Afternoon Seattle Mayor Ed Murray announced that his 2015-16 budget to be formally proposed on Sept. 22 will make new investments in public safety and the safety net, including funding to South Seattle area violence prevention groups.
The budget, as currently constituted, seeks to allocate $100,000 for the Breakfast Group Mentoring Program, a program designed to provide young men of color in Seattle Public Schools with wrap-around services, individualized instruction plans and mentoring to complete their secondary education and improve employment opportunities for them.
The mayor’s budget also designates $75,000 for the Rainier Valley Corp, located in Hillman City, to recruit emerging leaders from diverse immigrant communities and provide training, support and mentorship. South Seattle currently has the highest concentration of immigrants and first generation Americans of anywhere else in the city.
“Public safety is our number one priority, and my budget for the police department reflects these basic budgeting principles by investing in best management practices and more effective use of resources to get better outcomes.” Said Murray.
In regard to direct investment in public safety, Murray’s 2015-16 budget for the Seattle Police Department will propose funding more civilian expertise, including a civilian Chief Operating Officer and a civilian Chief Information Officer for improved operations and systems management and innovation. The COO has been hired, and has already implemented CompStat, the crime and disorder data tracking and analysis method made famous by Commissioner William Bratton in New York City in the 1990s, where it was credited with reducing crime by 60 percent.
“CompStat will take the police department to the next level in observing, mapping and tracking patterns of crime and disorder, and in mobilizing, analyzing and evaluating officer response,” said Murray. “It is a major reform that I believe is the key to our future success in crime prevention, in efficient and effective deployment of SPD resources, and in police accountability.”
CompStat will be used in conjunction with the “micro-policing plans” that Chief Kathy O’Toole will deliver and make publicly available by the end of 2014, Murray said. The plans will reflect the specific needs and circumstances of each of the unique neighborhoods of the city, and are intended to reconnect officers with the communities they serve. CompStat will provide timely and accurate data to inform an ever-evolving patrol strategy, focusing resources on areas of concern and ensuring that police are present and visible where needed most.