Wednesday, August 02, 2017

As Police Manpower Slips Away, Alderman Tunney Lies About Staffing Promise

Police manpower in the 19th District is slipping.

Alderman Tom "Tunocchio" Tunney | Artist's Rendering
Staffing levels are lower than local Alderman Tom Tunney promised us when he voted in favor of Chicago’s record-breaking property tax hike in exchange for a 35-officer increase during 2016.

So what is Tunney doing about it?

Lying, apparently.

In his latest newsletter, Tunney wrote that “while the number of officers in the 19th District is still higher than in January 2016 and higher than the commitment made by the Mayor in November of 2015, we will continue to work for the resources we need and deserve.”

The “commitment” he refers to is the 35 cops he says Rahm Emanuel promised to add to the 19th District. That commitment was made in October (not November) 2015 in exchange for Tunney’s property tax vote.

Here are Tunney’s exact words, sent in a statement on October 28, 2015:

“I have been assured that 35 additional police officers will be assigned to the 19th District in 2016…”

The 19th District began 2016 with 331 officers.

Adding 35 to that, the minimum staffing level needed for the mayor to meet his purported commitment is 366.

This month, the 19th District has 363 officers assigned to it. Tunney said so in his July 21 newsletter, and CWBChicago has been given identical staffing information directly from the Chicago Police Department.

363 is less than 366, leading us to conclude that—contrary to Tunney’s latest newsletter—manpower numbers here are NOT higher than the commitment made by the mayor.

We asked Tunney’s office to explain Tunney's apparently false statement. They continued the alderman's 14-month practice of not responding to us.
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