Portland’s skyrocketing crime leads to mayor asking for more police
Portland’s huge spike in crime has caused the mayor to request re-funding its police department.
Ted Wheeler, the mayor of the Pacific Northwest city – often called America’s “most woke” – is asking for another $5 million for police officers and body cameras this fall.
This comes after Portland had more murders in 2021 than during any previous year in its history according to the Daily Mail.
Portland’s regular, far-left Antifa protests strongly support plans to defund or even abolish its police department, even more so following George Floyd’s May 2020 murder by police in Minneapolis.
Three weeks later, city council defunded its police budget by $15 million.
Consequently, “many Portlanders no longer feel safe in their city,” said Wheeler during a news conference earlier this week, according to the Daily Mail.
The FBI says their data shows Portland homicides have increased nearly 30% from 2019 to 2020 and from the beginning of 2020 to now, that figure has gone up 83%.
The police budget was cut by $27 million in 2020 with $11 million due to the pandemic-induced financial emergency.
“Business owners have closed up shop, for fear of doing business in high risk areas,” said Wheeler.
“Commuters fear for their safety, whether taking public transport or going by foot. Parents are scared to let their children play outside.”
The executive director of Portland’s police union said the department is “running on fumes.”
Daryl Turner told Fox the city needs to hire 840 officers over the next five years to properly police Portland and keep residents safe.
Currently, Portland’s police department has 130 officers but Wheeler wants to add 300 officers by 2023 with the Tribune reporting the mayor is offering a $25,000 signing bonus to the first 50 sworn officers or public safety specialists and wants to hire back 25 retired police officers.
The Tribune says Wheeler wants part of a $60 million general fund excess balance from 2020 business taxes to be used on new equipment and better education and training for police.
“Without these investments, the outlook for violence in our city is grim,” said the mayor.