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OKC Civic Life Journal: Would police cuts betray voters' trust?

Fraternal Order of Police President John George says proposed funding cuts for police officers could be seen as a betrayal of the city council's promise to voters. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman]
Fraternal Order of Police President John George says proposed funding cuts for police officers could be seen as a betrayal of the city council's promise to voters. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman]


Will the Oklahoma City Council cut the number of police officer positions authorized in new budget? The police union has thoughts.

With sales tax revenue growth slowing but still outperforming the latest statewide numbers, will coronavirus affect budget planning?

And voters say 'no' to a parks improvement proposal. That and more in this week's OKC Civic Life Journal.

• Budget season is here. The Police Department proposes cutting the number of authorized officers to meet spending targets set by the city managers office. Voters just approved a sales tax increase two years ago based on the city council's promise to add officers. The police union's president is concerned.

• The mayor focuses the 2020 State of the City address on undertaking a "collaborative conversation" on improving public schools.

• And breaking news from The Oklahoman: The attorney general weighs in on the gaming standoff between the governor and tribes.

• Oklahoma City voters had approved every citizens' initiative to qualify for the ballot until March 3, when they turned down a proposed one-eighth cent sales tax increase, with revenue dedicated to parks. Find the initiative campaign leader's thoughts on how a secretive money group's anti-tax media blitz affected the outcome along with election facts and figures in this week's OKC Civic Life column.

• The 2020 U.S. Census begins contacting OKC residents March 12. Here are some things to know. To learn more, check the city of Oklahoma City, National Public Radio's myth-busters list, and the official census site.

• Oklahoma City's sales tax gain contrasts with a statewide decline. City government depends on sales tax for day-to-day operating expenses. Sales tax also finances MAPS and Better Streets Safer City street resurfacing.

• MAPS 4 is in line for $9 million from MAPS 3. Read about prospects for an early start on construction of the new coliseum at State Fair Park. Prep athletes will have a new Big House where championships are decided.

• Minor crime at Scissortail Park, the cost of upgrading the Bricktown Canal lighting system, a pollution compromise approved by the city council and census concerns answered highlight the late winter OKC Civic Life columns.

• An outdated city charter could get a makeover by year's end.

Related Photos
Fraternal Order of Police President John George says proposed funding cuts for police officers could be seen as a betrayal of the city council's promise to voters. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman]

Fraternal Order of Police President John George says proposed funding cuts for police officers could be seen as a betrayal of the city council's promise to voters. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman]

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-87971dedd4b2ed376b8f3a6b8813b8c3.jpg" alt="Photo - Fraternal Order of Police President John George says proposed funding cuts for police officers could be seen as a betrayal of the city council's promise to voters. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman]" title="Fraternal Order of Police President John George says proposed funding cuts for police officers could be seen as a betrayal of the city council's promise to voters. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>Fraternal Order of Police President John George says proposed funding cuts for police officers could be seen as a betrayal of the city council's promise to voters. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure>
William Crum

OU and Norman High School graduate, formerly worked as a reporter and editor for the Associated Press, the Star Tribune in Minneapolis, and the Norman Transcript. Married, two children, lives in Norman. Read more ›

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