NYPD budget: Mayor, City Council have framework for $1 billion in cuts

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- Mayor Bill de Blasio said he and the New York City Council have come up with a tentative plan for the future of policing while redistributing $1 billion from the NYPD budget to other community-based programs and resources.

"I'm excited to say that we have a plan that can achieve real reform, that can achieve real redistribution and at the same time can assure that we can keep our city safe," de Blasio said.

De Blasio said the mayor's office presented the plan to City Hall over the weekend.

"What I can tell you is we have found a plan that will keep the city safe, will achieve the $1 billion in savings, will allow us to redistribute money to youth programs and the communities that need it most," de Blasio said. "Everything is with an eye to safety, so we will be able to ensure patrol strength we need."

Sources tell Eyewitness News the cuts could include shifting school safety agents from police to the education department and no July Police Academy.

"We will be able to ensure school safety can do its job," he said. "The school safety issue will be addressed over several years, and we will have more details as we work on an agreement."

De Blasio also outlined a half-billion in construction and capital programs that could be shifted from police to youth programs, community centers and NYCHA.

"Look, we can do this, we can strike the balance, we can keep this city safe so negotiations continue," he said. "I think they've been very productive."

He also assured residents that the plans can be altered if necessary, and that all precautions will be taken to help ensure they are successful.

"I need to see we can make these changes," he said. "I need to feel it in my heart and soul that the city will be safe. You know, I am very concerned with the uptick in shootings. We have to be able to handle that, and we have to make reform. I came here to make reform. We have to make reform the right way, and I am convinced we have now struck that balance."

Negotiations on the $87 billion budget continue. It would take effect July 1 following a vote by the City Council.

PBA President Pat Lynch, however, blasted the announcement.

"Mayor de Blasio's message to New Yorkers today was clear: you will have fewer cops on your streets," he said in a statement. "Shootings more than doubled again last week. Even right now, the NYPD doesn't have enough manpower to shift cops to one neighborhood without making another neighborhood less safe. We will say it again: the Mayor and the City Council have surrendered the city to lawlessness. Things won't improve until New Yorkers hold them responsible."

And it's not just police facing a huge cut. Teachers could suffer as well, with the potential for hundreds of millions to be cut from schools.

"We always seem to have money for cops and not our children," teacher Jabari Brisport said. "Why are the helicopters circling a peaceful protest, and our kids can't get textbooks?"

Since 9/11, the NYPD's budget has almost doubled to about $6 billion.

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