Ald. Jose Perez
Press Release

Aldermen Peréz voices disappointment in Mayor Barrett’s veto decision

Statement by Aldermen José Peréz

By - Oct 18th, 2017 05:27 pm

I am very disappointed in Mayor Barrett’s decision to veto the resolution, passed by the Common Council just yesterday, asking the State of Wisconsin to let the Council remove a chief of police from office with a super-majority vote.

Given the remarkable speed with which this veto was issued, I would have thought his rationale for it would have been some obvious flaw in its drafting or logic. Instead, however, he offers a poor defense of his decision arguing that this change would inappropriately reduce the authority of the Fire and Police Commission and politicize the management of the Milwaukee Police Department.

If the Mayor can be taken at his word, he’s late in developing this level of respect for the Fire and Police Commission. The Mayor publically supports the Commission, yet only offers it minimal funding when it comes to budget time. He undermined its authority during the process for hiring Chief Flynn and did not wait for a new executive director of the Commission to be hired prior to pushing through the most recent renewal of the Chief’s contract. Moreover, he has never asked to be relieved of the veto he wields over any directive issued by the Commission to the Chief. On the contrary, he openly considered using it when the Commission directed the Chief to alter the department’s pursuit policy.

As for politicizing the management of the department, I hope the Mayor does not think the public so ill-informed as to think politics plays no role in the management of the Milwaukee Police Department. The Chief’s decision to embrace the new pursuit policy, as well as traffic safety, generally came from no data-driven analysis. His decision to implement recommendations from the draft collaborative reform report he labored mightily to discredit was the result of neither sudden conversion nor deep reflection.

The Common Council’s resolution seeks only to hold the Milwaukee Chief of Police – this Chief or any Milwaukee Chief – accountable. The Mayor should have understood and supported this instead of issuing his ill-considered veto.

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3 thoughts on “Aldermen Peréz voices disappointment in Mayor Barrett’s veto decision”

  1. Jeff M says:

    The mayor is correct. The aldermen are hell bent on politicizing.

  2. MARY GLASS says:

    October 19, 2017

    The recent step toward joint-Charter officers of Milwaukee management and real public policy making was executed by the vote of the Common Council to weigh-in on the effectiveness and longevity of the Chief of Police in the city of Milwaukee. What better way than a statutory link.

    Yes. Tom Barrett, mayor, continues down the path of authoritarianism while hoodwinking many with the, “good ole Tom speech” – appointments to committees and boards – huge swaths of the annual budget that run concurrent in cycle and style – photo optics that are misleading to the “uninformed” – and his co-opting with MMAC, MEDC BOARD, GRE and MILWAUKEE 7.

    The Common Council must retrench and mount a pushback here. Since you knew he had the power of veto, what’s your Plan B? There must be a successful Plan B.

    Now that the Common Council has the door ajar, give a huge kick and OPEN THE DOOR WIDE in the leadership of legislators of Milwaukee city government.

  3. Vincent Hanna says:

    October 19, 2017
    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    Weigh in on his performance, or just make it so that they can fire Flynn? There’s a big difference. They weigh in on a daily basis. Are they doing what their constituents are demanding they do or just grandstanding?

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