Neighborhood Network

June 7, 2021

Dear Neighbor,

The Austin Police Department’s 144th Cadet Class begins today. Nearly a hundred cadets will start the academy, which graduates early next year.

The community is invited to meet the new cadet class on Tuesday, June 15, from 4:00 until 6:30 p.m. at Edward Rendon Sr. Park (2101 Jesse E. Segovia Street).

Interim Police Chief Joseph Chacon reported to the Austin City Council last week that the action steps in the city manager’s blueprint for a reimagined cadet academy have been completed.

The police department currently has 140 total vacancies in addition to the 150 positions cut last year. Turning the police staffing crisis around will require filling vacancies, scheduling more cadet classes next year, and slowing attrition.

Austin needs a new evidence-based police staffing model. Three staffing studies since 2012 have recommended plans based on workload analysis (calls for service) and an uncommitted time target (i.e., community policing).

This summer, the Greater Austin Crime Commission is partnering with business and community groups to develop a police staffing plan for the city council and manager to consider. National experts will help design a model that balances response times with community expectations about patrol functions and service levels.

The Neighborhood Network will host forums across the city in July and August. These programs will feature community discussions on public safety priorities and the proposed fiscal year 2022 budget. If you would like to host or sponsor a forum, please contact us.

Phase two of the public camping ordinance implementation begins next week. Police will issue written warnings and initial citations to persons failing to comply. The Downtown Austin Community Court will connect individuals with services and assign community service.

Best,

Corby

P.S. Please plan to join us for the Twentieth Annual 9/11 Memorial on Friday, September 10, 8:00 a.m., at the Austin Club. More event information and a registration link will be available soon.