The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department will not try to hire 100 sworn officers that were promised last year when the City-County Council raised the county income tax.
Instead, city officials said Wednesday, the department this year spent the amount of money it would have cost to hire those officers on immediate needs not covered in the 2008 budget: retirement benefits, overtime, fuel and contractual raises.
Next year, Public Safety Director Scott Newman said, the department plans to hire 40 civilian public assistance officers. The new, lower-paid positions would handle less-difficult duties such as vandalism and accident reports, allowing sworn officers more time for bigger challenges.
far from being the unaffordable tax hike that ballard and friends portrayed it as, the COIT increase turns out to have been too small, such that it doesn't bring in enough money to cover the expenses it was planned to... and that's not even counting the police pensions it was also supposed to cover. (ipopa thinks he knows why the public safety budget is a mess: expensive micromanagement.)
of course, some of us have known all along that the increase would never be repealed, because despite what ballard said on the campaign trail, the city desperately needed the money. but if there was ever any doubt, this story should squash it. this announcement officially kills two pillars of the ballard campaign: that the COIT increase was bad, and that he would hire more cops. (hiring rent-a-cops and calling them cops doesn't count.) ¶