Ald. Bob Donovan
Press Release

The administration owes the residents of this city a public safety plan

Statement from Alderman Bob Donovan - August 29, 2017

By - Aug 29th, 2017 09:07 am

A year ago, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett and Reggie Moore with the Office of Violence Prevention, both promised a public safety plan for the citizens of Milwaukee. Yet one year later, and $1 million of grant money allocated, and we still have nothing to show for it except “pretty power points.”

Milwaukee is seeing growth in two areas — a growing investment in downtown, and a growing number of neighborhoods that are struggling with public safety. Our residents are facing a stubbornly high homicide rate, regular shootings, armed robberies, carjackings, street drugs, prostitution, reckless driving, and human trafficking. Even our teachers at Milwaukee Public Schools (MPS) are being attacked in the classroom, making teacher retention difficult and robbing students of a safe learning environment. To compound the issue, morale among police officers is incredibly low, with response times and active policing falling short for various reasons including a shrinking force.

It’s been nearly a year since the Milwaukee Common Council proposed a common sense public safety plan to establish order and safety across our city. After dismissing the Common Council’s plan, Mayor Barrett indicated he would unveil a plan of his own in 2016 claiming,”(It) has been in the works for quite some time.” Still, Mayor Barrett has unveiled nothing and instead hired Reggie Moore with the Office of Violence Prevention at nearly $100,000 a year to help the mayor develop a plan. Yet, in another round of mixed messages, Moore was quoted as saying, “this isn’t the mayor’s plan.” However, even the webpage for the Office of Violence Prevention indicates they’d unveil a safety plan in June 2017, we’re still waiting. Moore’s office was also given a five-year $5 million grant to address Milwaukee’s safety issues, yet the question remains — what do we have to show for it? The lack of leadership and follow through is forcing many families to deal with the serious challenges of unsafe neighborhoods, fueling the flight of middle class workers.

Recently, Mayor Barrett proposed a sales tax, which ironically was one of the recommendations of the Common Council’s public safety plan, an idea I supported for quite some time with the understanding it would be used to bring back hundreds of police officers cut over the last few years. However, the mayor simply wants to use the funding to maintain the status quo, which is clearly a failing endeavor.

It is time we saw a strategic plan laid out by Mayor Barrett and his administration, which demonstrates definitive plans on how to restore neighborhood safety, so our residents are convinced their neighborhoods are cared about as much as downtown is.

Mentioned in This Press Release

Recent Press Releases by Ald. Bob Donovan

Will No One Have the Courage and Good Sense to Postpone the Spring General Election?

Statement from Alderman Bob Donovan March 31, 2020

In the Stand-Off Between Mayor Barrett and Chief Morales, Residents are the Real Losers

Statement from Alderman Bob Donovan - March 9, 2020

Red Light Cameras Are Not the Cure for What Ails Milwaukee

A Long-Term Solution to Reckless Driving Will Require Leadership

Leave a Reply

You must be an Urban Milwaukee member to leave a comment. Membership, which includes a host of perks, including an ad-free website, tickets to marquee events like Summerfest, the Wisconsin State Fair and the Florentine Opera, a better photo browser and access to members-only, behind-the-scenes tours, starts at $9/month. Learn more.

Join now and cancel anytime.

If you are an existing member, sign-in to leave a comment.

Have questions? Need to report an error? Contact Us