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Council continues to reimagine public safety with budget amendments

Monday, April 26, 2021 by Elizabeth Pagano

City Council has approved a series of budget amendments aimed at shifting city responsibilities away from the Austin Police Department. On Thursday, Council approved a number of amendments that, significantly, created a new Emergency Communications Department that will handle emergency calls, moving 222 full-time positions and more than $16 million out of the police budget. The approved changes also move an alarm unit to the Development Services Department and move APD human resources, public information, facility maintenance and finance to city departments. Council members voted 9-1-1 to approve the budget amendments, with Mackenzie Kelly voting in opposition and Vanessa Fuentes absent for the vote.

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