Ald. Bob Donovan
Press Release

County’s defensive reaction to committee testimony disappointing

Statement from Alderman Bob Donovan June 7, 2016

By - Jun 7th, 2016 10:45 am

The news reports late yesterday detailing the quick and defensive response by Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele and Health and Human Services Director Hector Colón to testimony before the Public Safety Committee earlier Monday were quite disappointing.

The special Public Safety Committee meeting Monday was the first in a series that Common Council President Hamilton, I and my Common Council colleagues believe are critical to improving overall public safety in Milwaukee. We are intending to have very frank discussions about our public safety challenges with those in our city, county, region and state charged with the very critical task of keeping us safe and administering justice. The County Executive’s defensive reaction to some of the testimony delivered yesterday was centered on “the blame game.”

First, the special meetings and the direct, light-of-day testimony featured is intended to get the issues on the table so that we can identify where we need to better focus resources or change tactics to improve public safety. We need to work together with all agencies to find solutions for our challenges, and we are committed to working across governments and across agencies to do that. But the County Executive is missing this critical point: We first need to have the courage to identify where we’re coming up short, and where our main challenges are, if we are going to solve them, together.

Anyone who watched yesterday’s committee meeting would have a very difficult time claiming that it was all about “the blame game.” That is simply nonsense.

Mr. Colón is scheduled to appear at a future special Public Safety Committee meeting, and we look forward to listening to his testimony and discussing issues with him. If Mr. Abele thinks Chief Flynn is wrong, we invite him to also attend one of the special meetings and tell us why he thinks the Chief is wrong.

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