Monday, May 23, 2022

Robbin' Vos wants Dem stimulus to pay for cops. But won't do anything to fund the police himself

Ever since the Biden stimulus gave funds to the State of Wisconsin and to communities around the state, Assembly Speaker Robbin' Vos and other Republicans in the gerrymandered Legislature have resented the fact that they can't tie the hands of Governor Evers or other Dem-led cities with how those funds are used. But that's not stopping them from making "suggestions", most recently by recommending that the local assistance funds be used to pay for more police.

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos doubled down on that stance in a letter to the city of Racine’s mayor and common council. Both Sen. Van Wanggaard (R-Racine) and Rep. Robert Wittke (R-Racine) joined Vos in issuing the letter, calling on the city to spend its allocated American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds on law enforcement.

In a statement made after issuing the letter Vos said the letter urged Racine officials, “to commit a substantial amount of federal funds towards reducing crime and protecting communities by investing in additional policing.” The city of Racine has been allocated $46 million in ARPA funds, with a second wave of monies on its way. Vos accused the state’s parole commissioner John Tate, a member of Racine’s common council, of being “soft on crime,” adding, “no wonder crime is on the rise.” So far this year, the city of Racine has seen six homicides, which is double the number recorded last year. One recent shooting victim was a local business owner....

“This is an opportunity to show the community they [city officials] are addressing public safety and supporting the police too,” said Vos, who pointed out that the Racine Police Department currently has 20 vacancies. In their joint letter Vos, Wanggard, and Wittke scold and lambast Racine’s local elected officials. “Property crime is also on the rise,” the letter states. “Following years of declining rates of motor vehicle theft, incidents in the city are the highest they have been since before Mayor Mason and most of you were elected.” The letter adds, “Immediate action must be taken to put more officers on the street.”
First of all, it's hilarious to see Vos try to promote ARPA dollars as a way to deal with a problem, because zero Republicans voted for ARPA in Congress. This means that if those funds are used to shore up law enforcement, all of the thanks should go to Joe Biden and other Dems who put ARPA into law, right?

Governor Evers called Vos's bluff today, by setting aside some of the state's ARPA funds to make changes around Milwaukee's Deer District after there were shootings following the last Bucks home playoff game, as well as other safety improvements.
Gov. Tony Evers announced Monday he will send $2.2 million in federal funding for additional security measures in downtown Milwaukee and support other police investigative efforts.

For downtown, the funds will help pay for police overtime costs in that area this summer, according to a news release from Evers’ office. It will also allow the city to install fencing that can be remotely raised and lowered to create pedestrian-only zones on weekends and during major events.

The money will also help the Milwaukee Police Department hire civilian contractors to manage ballistics technology used to investigate gun crimes and the processing of sexual assault kits, the release said. Forensic workstations, “night vision devices,” and a device that will provide instant, on-scene ballistics analysis can also now be purchased by using the funds.
That seems to be a good one-time deal, and the equipment and technology upgrades should have ongoing benefits. But as a "fiscal conservative", Robbin' Vos should recognize that asking to pay for ongoing increases in spending with one-time funds is going to be a problem when those funds run out. So is Robbin' and the rest of the Wisconsin GOP going to do anything to help cities like Racine and Milwaukee be able to afford those officers in the future?

HAHAHAHA!!! You're funny.

And Vos and the rest of the WisGOPs won't allow levy limits to be raised to help local communities afford officers, or giving those communities the chance to pass a sales tax, even if all of those sales tax dollars could only go to police, fire protection or other public safety services.

But that sure won't keep Robbin' Vos and the rest of the dishonest WisGOPs from trying to claim that its Dems who somehow "defund the police". Even though it's WisGOPs who prevent many Wisconsin communities from having the resources to pay for and maintain their police forces. And that reality can't be repeated enough.

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