According to a budget report made public Tuesday, City Administrative Officer Miguel Santana has recommended that the LAPD assume command of the Office of Public Safety, a move that would immediately save Los Angeles $2.2 million annually by eliminating redundancies in duties without boosting the number of sworn officers, the City Maven blog reports.
The Office of Public Safety is part of the General Services Department, which provides security to a string of public sites such as libraries, parks, the L.A. Zoo, the Convention Center and wastewater treatment plants run by the Bureau of Sanitation. Within Eagle Rock, OPS officers are responsible for security at the , for example—an area that has had its share of troubles over the past few years, including several unprovokded, violent attacks on members of the public by unruly teenagers.
“If Public Safety personnel are moved to the LAPD, they would become part of the new Security Services Division,” writes the City Maven, who blogs exclusively from City Hall. “That division would have three sub-sections: City Security, Special Services and Administration.”
Under the proposed plan, OPS officers would have to go through new training and those who pass all the requisite medical and psychological exams would have the option of becoming sworn officers.
Santana’s recommendation shares some similarities with another proposal that Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa considered in 2010 as a way to add 1,000 officers to the LAPD by shuffling around public safety officers. Click here to read about that proposal in an April 2010 Los Angeles Times story.
If Santana’s proposal is adopted, the City’s General Fund is eventually expected to save as much as $2.9 million per year after the new Security Services Division is consolidated. Villaraigosa is scheduled to release his 2012-13 budget for the City on Friday.
And take our poll below about whether you think it’s wise to consolidate the LAPD and the Office of Public Safety.