City council approves budget to increase police staffing - WNEM TV 5

City council approves budget to increase police staffing

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FLINT, MI (WNEM) -

There have been 35 homicides in the city this year, compared to 29 a year ago.

Mayor Dayne Walling reached out for additional help from the state police, and he got it.

"You have some individuals who that are solving problems with guns instead of other means and it's leading to tragic consequences," Walling said.

At least on a temporary basis.  They agreed to step up patrols during this week's Back to the Bricks classic car celebration.

"There is going to be a robust presence downtown this weekend, we don't have any particular safety concerns for the folks that will come downtown,” Walling said. “To your point it's a good opportunity to showcase Flint. We will make it safe for those folks that want to visit."

There is a growing sentiment at City Hall that there needs to be more men and women in uniform on the streets of Flint and that is something that Walling says is priority one.

Each officer would cost the city roughly $65,000, a cost the city is prepared to pay.  They would be on the city payroll and paid for with money from a surplus in the fire department.

Lt. Thomas Kish is the Flint post commander for state.

“It would not be an easy decision but it's one that I believe we need to talk about and I hope that the outcome is we have additional police officers in the Flint Police Department,” Kish said.

The city council agreed to a budget amendment that would reallocate funds to add more police officers at the meeting on Aug. 10.

The funding will add five police officers to the Flint Police Department.

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