Category: Neighborhood Network

Neighborhood Network

January 26, 2021

Dear Neighbor, Austin faces serious public safety challenges, notably homelessness and police staffing. This week, let’s discuss police patrol shortages and academy training. The first round of Austin Police Department staffing reassignments went into effect this month, which moved eighty-nine officers from specialized units back to patrol. These reallocations were made to adjust the patrol workload to account… Read more »

Neighborhood Network

January 13, 2021

Dear Neighbor, Last year was defined by the pandemic and politics. This year, the community will work together to end a public health crisis and focus on homelessness and public safety. The Texas Legislature convened yesterday for the 87th Regular Session. Criminal justice and public safety will be among the top issues facing state lawmakers. For example,… Read more »

Neighborhood Network

December 7, 2020

Dear Neighbor, Is this the Austin we want? In the first ten months of this year, murder increased 54 percent in Austin, arson is up 34 percent, auto theft increased 30 percent, and aggravated assault is up 19 percent. Robberies, building thefts, vandalism, and burglaries have also increased. (The latest Chief’s Monthly Report is available here.) Despite rising crime… Read more »

Neighborhood Network

November 16, 2020

Dear Neighbor, At the cost of thirteen police officers for a year, we have another city study. Last week, the Austin City Council approved a contract worth up to $1.3 million with Kroll Associates Inc. to “conduct a comprehensive, multi-pronged investigation of the extent to which forms of racism, bigotry, and discrimination are present in the protocols, practices, and… Read more »

Neighborhood Network

October 26, 2020

Dear Neighbor, The last scheduled class of forty-two police cadets graduated Friday. They deserve the support of the community and its leaders. How did one Austin City Council member thank them? By saying, “The academy we have is not training people consistent with the values of this community.” It’s a claim as alarming as it is wrong.… Read more »

Neighborhood Network

October 20, 2020

Dear Neighbor, In August, the Austin City Council voted unanimously to make significant reductions to the police budget. Now, some city council members who celebrated the cuts have changed their story. You can’t have it both ways. What really happened? It’s confusing. The Austin City Council cut an additional $21.5 million from the city manager’s proposed budget and… Read more »

Neighborhood Network

October 15, 2020

Dear Neighbor, NUA — No Units Available That’s the patrol status when you call 9-1-1 and police can’t respond. And it’s happening in Austin. Forty-seven police cadets are expected to graduate from the training academy next Friday. After that, no more cadet classes are scheduled. Why? Despite rising crime and slower response times, the Austin City Council… Read more »

Neighborhood Network

October 5, 2020

Dear Neighbor, Today is the voter registration deadline for the November 3 election. Five Austin City Council seats are on the ballot. Be an informed voter. Find your council district.
 Early voting begins October 13.
 Election Day is November 3.
 The Greater Austin Crime Commission and a coalition of business and community groups will urge the Austin City Council to make… Read more »

Neighborhood Network

September 28, 2020

Dear Neighbor, The latest Chief’s Monthly Report indicates several crime categories continue to rise compared to last year. In the first eight months of 2020: Murder increased 43%. Auto theft increased 33%. Arson increased 24%. Aggravated assaults increased 17%. Robberies, building theft, vandalism, and burglaries increased. Despite rising crime and slower response times, the Austin City Council voted unanimously last month to cut… Read more »

Neighborhood Network

September 8, 2020

Dear Neighbor, The City-Community Task Force to “reimagine” public safety has met three times for more than seven hours and has yet to discuss any of the Austin Police Department programs and services under consideration to be cut or moved. The task force is scheduled to meet again this week to consider how to organize and structure its work. What is… Read more »