Berkeley takes step to reimagine public safety by fully funding the police
BERKELEY, Calif. - The city of Berkeley passed a two-year balanced budget that would fully fund the police department as part of their plan to re-imagine public safety.
The budget would fund a new department of community safety, violence prevention and youth services, and mental health services including a mental health center at Berkeley High school.
The city planned to have a full police staff of 181 officers, Mayor Jesse Arreguin told KTVU.
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There would also be a specialized care unit with nurses and clinicians who would respond to people in mental health or substance abuse crises, Arreguin said.
Non-serious calls for service, such as noise complaints, would be handled by a team of community service officers, the Mayor added.
The city also planned to invest in its infrastructure, including road repairs and bike and pedestrian improvements.