LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles Police Department has requested an additional $119 million for the 2023-24 fiscal year, which would bring their grand total to $2 billion. The Los Angeles Board of Police Commissioners approved the proposed budget increase in late November, but still needs to clear the LA City Council and mayor.

The LAPD plans to use most of the additional funding to pay for salaries and expenses, including $105.5 million to hire 780 officers and rehire as many as 200 sworn personnel.  

What You Need To Know

  • LAPD requested an additional $119 million for the 2023-24 fiscal year

  • The proposed budget cleared the LA Board of Police Commissioners, but still needs approval from the mayor and city council

  • LAPD plans to use $105.5 million to hire 780 officers and rehire up to 200 sworn personnel

  • The police budget also included $38 million to replace aging vehicles and $15.6 million for two helicopters 

“Inside the Issues” host Alex Cohen spoke with Chief Michel Moore about why the department has asked for such a sizable increase in funds for the upcoming year. He said the budget request is an effort to restore hundreds of positions that were lost over the last three years of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“With hundreds of open positions in our civilian rank and hundreds in our sworn rank, we’re also seeing a reduction in our ability to provide specialized investigative resources for human trafficking and other serious crimes,” Moore noted.

The LAPD chief said these record-low staffing numbers have impacted the department’s ability to quickly respond to 911 calls as well curb violent crimes and property crimes throughout the city, which have increased in the pandemic’s aftermath.

Beyond additional staff, the police budget included $38 million to replace aging vehicles and $15.6 million for two new helicopters. The funds would provide critical equipment and vehicles to their fleet, and allow for technology to be updated throughout the department to increase efficiency, Moore said.

“The budget request for modernization of these legacy systems would allow us to be more effective, spend more time in the field, more time engaging with our communities, building trust but also preventing violent crime,” he added.

Some Angelenos are critical of the LAPD budget request, including new Council member Eunisses Hernandez, who tweeted that the additional $119 million should go toward expanding the amount of mental health professionals who respond to mental health crises throughout the city instead of the LA Police Department. 

However, Moore argues that cops are vital to the city’s fight to decrease crime.

“Cops count. We see study after study that when officers have more time to spend in their community, when they develop relationships in our community, that we see violent crime go down, we see property crime go down,” he said.

The department also will have an active role in efforts to reduce homelessness in Los Angeles. 

Moore said he fully supports Mayor Karen Bass’ recent declaration for a state of emergency on homelessness and that the LAPD will work together with the mayor’s office to find effective solutions for interim and permanent housing initiatives. The police department’s role will be to reinforce public safety and not criminalize homelessness.

“I appreciate that her approach toward homelessness is not being led by the police, but in reality the police involvement of this is for the safety of everyone involved, for outreach workers, for sanitation workers, for persons experiencing homelessness themselves,” Moore stated.

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