Tags: Bill de Blasio | Mayor De Blasio | NYPD

Mayor de Blasio Agrees to Add 1,300 Officers to NYPD

Image: Mayor de Blasio Agrees to Add 1,300 Officers to NYPD
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By    |   Wednesday, 24 Jun 2015 02:13 PM

Following months of resistance by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio to increase the headcount of the New York Police Department, the mayor did an about-face and announced the agency would add some 1,300 new officers to its rolls, according to Capital New York.com.

In addition to the new hires, an additional 400 officers currently on desk duty will be returned to patrol the streets.

The news stunned even City Council speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, who had lobbied for 1,000 new officers, The New York Times reports.

The mayor insists that his reversal is not tied to a spike in homicides and shootings in the city, but maintains that Police Commissioner Bill Bratton convinced him that the additional officers would benefit the department’s growing community policing effort.

Bratton, according to Capital New York, is expected to discuss details of the new policing strategy sometime this week, though it’s reported that it will "resemble old-fashioned foot patrol: officers walking the streets, introducing themselves to shop owners and getting to know residents."

There are plans for about 300 of the new officers to form a new counterterrorism team to patrol high-risk areas of the city, such as Times Square, according to the Times.

"There were some meetings with the commissioner in the last few weeks, where we went from a broader discussion of his vision to a much more detailed one that became very, very compelling to me, because he proved to me, to my satisfaction, that his vision of neighborhood policing that so many of us have wanted to see relayed for years and years actually could be reached with an investment that we could find a way to achieve," de Blasio said Tuesday.

De Blasio drew the ire of police last year for appearing with protesters demonstrating against his own Police Department and for saying that he has taught his biracial son to be cautious around police.

The NYPD, according to the Times, currently employs 34,600 uniformed personnel and another 890 are expected to graduate from the Police Academy next month.

"The force was significantly expanded in the early 1990s, under former Mayor David N. Dinkins," the newspaper reports. "Since then, it has shrunk amid recessions and a sharp drop in urban crime."

At the press conference, de Blasio said a cap on police overtime influenced his decision to hire more officers.

The news of the force expansion was unwelcome by advocacy groups calling for police reform.

"This deal to increase the NYPD head count seems like politics at its worst," Monifa Bandele of Communities United for Police Reform told the Times. "It's disappointing and perplexing that the city budget will increase the NYPD head count when systemic problems with police accountability and culture, that allow New Yorkers to be abused and killed, have yet to be fixed."

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Following months of resistance by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio to increase the headcount of the New York Police Department, the mayor did an about-face and announced the agency would add some 1,300 new officers to its rolls, according to Capital New York.com.
Bill de Blasio, Mayor De Blasio, NYPD
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2015-13-24
Wednesday, 24 Jun 2015 02:13 PM
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