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Old 07-11-2013, 09:10 AM   #1
curious
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Marble Falls PD

What the devil is the city manager and council doing to the PD?!! They were severely short handed, already. The city appoved hiring 2 more officers. Then they cut the PD budget by $250K?
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Old 07-11-2013, 01:25 PM   #2
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Not to worry. That money can be spent to throw more money at something that has not worked before, and won't work this time.
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Old 07-17-2013, 08:32 AM   #3
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I am very disappointed in how this is turning out. The PD will now be at staffing levels from 13 years ago. When I started with MFPD in 1998, it was pretty rowdy around here. We had bars with almost nightly fights, druggies doing deals in town, gangs from Killeen hanging around. The city gave the PD the manpower and tools to combat all of that. The PD had the manpower to be proactive and really go after the bad guys, and the bad guys were run outta town.

Now, all of that hard work is on the verge of being dismantled. With the growth that Marble Falls has seen in the last 15 years, the traffic increase, the increase in retail stores, a new hospital, and annexing miles of 281 to the south - we're actually going to DECREASE manpower?
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Old 07-18-2013, 07:35 AM   #4
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But, we need a new soccer field. Let's see, where will we get $250,000?
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Old 07-18-2013, 11:47 AM   #5
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For a long time there has been a desire to help MFPD with the crowded space that they occupy. Several years ago, a new building was considered but the cost came in at $10M+ which was/is more that we could afford. Several other proposals have been made but they were not considered acceptable

As the new budget cycle began, the PD was given the option of a new building provided the PD budget could be reduced to cover the bond payments. An annual bond payment of $225K for 20 years at today's interest rates will provide $3M.

The Chief, together with his command staff, worked through the details and identified $301K in budget reductions to make the bond payments. They made the decisions about the budgets changes.

The next step is to for an architect to work with PD to convert their space needs into conceptual drawings and to develop cost estimates.

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Old 07-18-2013, 11:49 AM   #6
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But, we need a new soccer field. Let's see, where will we get $250,000?
The funding for the new soccer fields and swimming pool will be bonds and the annual payment coming from funds generated by a property tax increase. The voters will decide in the November Election if they want to increase property taxes to pay for these projects. At this point, the estimated property tax increase for these two projects would be $72/year for a house with a $180K valuation.

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Old 07-18-2013, 12:06 PM   #7
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Butch - thank you for coming on here and explaining how the details of this work.
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Old 07-19-2013, 07:13 AM   #8
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The PD found 301 thousand dollars to cut???? Wow that is a lot. who will be loosing their job for this? Where else or who else cut their budgets? Isn't there a person in our city department, ie the city manager who could find and apply for a grant? This doesn't sound good, or feel right.
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Old 07-19-2013, 09:01 AM   #9
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The PD found 301 thousand dollars to cut???? Wow that is a lot. who will be loosing their job for this? Where else or who else cut their budgets? Isn't there a person in our city department, ie the city manager who could find and apply for a grant? This doesn't sound good, or feel right.
The two newest officers that were just hired lost their jobs. A couple of other officers were demoted.
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Old 07-19-2013, 09:08 AM   #10
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were there any jobs lost in the city department? Losing a job sucks, especially for a building. Maybe we don't need so much park land to maintain. Really need to go to some of these counsel meetings.
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Old 07-21-2013, 03:38 PM   #11
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The funding for the new soccer fields and swimming pool will be bonds and the annual payment coming from funds generated by a property tax increase. The voters will decide in the November Election if they want to increase property taxes to pay for these projects. At this point, the estimated property tax increase for these two projects would be $72/year for a house with a $180K valuation.

Butch
Pools loose money and are a waste of TAX payer dollars.

Soccer fields are just stripped grass with a net on each end and we have those.

I truely HOPE the voters shoot that down come election time.

Old saying in this world. Use it up wear it out make it do or do with out.
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Old 07-21-2013, 03:47 PM   #12
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[QUOTE=butchkemper;16369]For a long time there has been a desire to help MFPD with the crowded space that they occupy. Several years ago, a new building was considered but the cost came in at $10M+ which was/is more that we could afford. Several other proposals have been made but they were not considered acceptable

Part of the reason other proposals were not acceptable were due to them not being on a grand enough scale and not being NEW construction.

As the new budget cycle began, the PD was given the option of a new building provided the PD budget could be reduced to cover the bond payments. An annual bond payment of $225K for 20 years at today's interest rates will provide $3M.


If bonds are used does that mean that the property owners will be paying for this??And if so at what increase in rate or value increase?
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Old 07-21-2013, 03:57 PM   #13
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I am very disappointed in how this is turning out. The PD will now be at staffing levels from 13 years ago. When I started with MFPD in 1998, it was pretty rowdy around here. We had bars with almost nightly fights, druggies doing deals in town, gangs from Killeen hanging around. The city gave the PD the manpower and tools to combat all of that. The PD had the manpower to be proactive and really go after the bad guys, and the bad guys were run outta town.

Now, all of that hard work is on the verge of being dismantled. With the growth that Marble Falls has seen in the last 15 years, the traffic increase, the increase in retail stores, a new hospital, and annexing miles of 281 to the south - we're actually going to DECREASE manpower?
Yes they annexed miles to the south of town but really. How much effort does it take to patrol that area?. Its not like there are many neighborhoods and there are only so many companies. The north side needs alot more watching for bad guys. Especially near wally world.
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Old 07-21-2013, 04:00 PM   #14
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But, we need a new soccer field. Let's see, where will we get $250,000?
Oh thats an easy answer. its called OPM.
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Old 07-21-2013, 09:49 PM   #15
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If bonds are used does that mean that the property owners will be paying for this??And if so at what increase in rate or value increase?
There will be no increase in the tax rate as the funds to pay for the PD building will come from existing funds allocated to PD.

If the soccer fields and swimming pool are approved by the voters in the November Election, there will be an increase in the tax rate to make those bond payments.

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Old 07-22-2013, 07:34 AM   #16
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How do you improve on the soccer fields? The swimming pool? It hasn't been that long since it was 'remodeled'. Again I ask, who lost their jobs with the city department(s)?
My understanding that there was funding for the new police department, before the last flood and the monies went there for clean up. Since Northwood is now a cut thru street to 1431 to 281, it has become a race track in the mornings! Could use those extra officers here to ticket and make the city a good chunk of change! The area is growing and cutting police staff is stupid!
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Old 07-22-2013, 08:59 AM   #17
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How do you improve on the soccer fields? The swimming pool? It hasn't been that long since it was 'remodeled'. Again I ask, who lost their jobs with the city department(s)?
My understanding that there was funding for the new police department, before the last flood and the monies went there for clean up. Since Northwood is now a cut thru street to 1431 to 281, it has become a race track in the mornings! Could use those extra officers here to ticket and make the city a good chunk of change! The area is growing and cutting police staff is stupid!
You have to understand the Nature of Government and money. Some times things have to get tweaked a little here and a little there to make it all work properly.

Why do you seem to feel that we Need more POs?. Judging by your statement you sound like you only want them for REVENUE generators .
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Old 07-23-2013, 08:35 AM   #18
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Caretaker, I don't think we necessarily need more POs at this moment, but we certainly do not need less. The PD is stretched pretty thin. You talk about the 281 south not being hard to patrol. However, even a minor wreck on that stretch of highway is the responsibility of the PD. If they only have two officers on the street, they will both be out there handling it and the rest of the city will be uncovered. These officers are very busy, and it really is unsafe to expect them to do the job with the staffing they will have if this cut is allowed to stand.
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Old 07-24-2013, 11:38 AM   #19
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Bad Judgement in Reducing Police Presence

Was the police chief supportive of this idea? It would seem strange that he would hire two new officers only to let them go three months later. I can only assume that the two new officers were hired to match the projections in population increase, and therefore, the need for increased police presence.

So, if three months later he has to let them go, it seems clear that the budget constraints causing the layoffs are not in line with what the police department leadership would consider good judgement to ensure that the people of Marble Falls have enough manpower to cover the demands and keep people safe.

I think there may be a failure in leadership as far as determining priorities. Pools, soccer fields, etc., are ultimately nice-to-have items, while a strong police department is a must-have item. If the population increases, the police presence should increase to meet the need, not the other way around. Police is a priority 1 issue, while soccer fields and pools are priority 2 issues, and one should not decrease a priority 1 issue to advance priority 2 projects.

The new building should not come from the operation budget of the PD, and they should not be forced to lay-off important personnel to build a new building. Police leadership clearly felt it was important to hire two new officers - we should respect that judgement and keep police at a level that meets demand. If the current course of action doesn't allow for this, City leadership should go back to the drawing board until they have a solution that doesn't cut our police force down.
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Old 07-27-2013, 07:32 AM   #20
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were there any jobs lost in the city department? Losing a job sucks, especially for a building. Maybe we don't need so much park land to maintain. Really need to go to some of these counsel meetings.

While i am not sure if other departments let anyone go due to cut backs there are several positions which have recently become vacant. In the finance department a utility clerk spot is vacant. And in the Public works there is the Street superintendent slot is vacant.
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Old 07-29-2013, 08:27 AM   #21
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I think there may be a failure in leadership as far as determining priorities. Pools, soccer fields, etc., are ultimately nice-to-have items, while a strong police department is a must-have item. If the population increases, the police presence should increase to meet the need, not the other way around. Police is a priority 1 issue, while soccer fields and pools are priority 2 issues, and one should not decrease a priority 1 issue to advance priority 2 projects.

The new building should not come from the operation budget of the PD, and they should not be forced to lay-off important personnel to build a new building. Police leadership clearly felt it was important to hire two new officers - we should respect that judgement and keep police at a level that meets demand. If the current course of action doesn't allow for this, City leadership should go back to the drawing board until they have a solution that doesn't cut our police force down.
I agree wholeheartedly.
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Old 07-30-2013, 07:19 AM   #22
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I agree, something doesn't feel right about this situation at all. The city annexed several miles south, now they have to service water and sewer and security, this adds to the police departments area to cover, with two less officers. Other police departments in the 'area' say we are understaffed as it is ( no I will not say who said ). and Caretaker, yes it is the police job to stop and ticket lawbreakers, which is a funding of the city and department. Maybe our Mayor and city manager could enlighten us in their decisions to 'demand' the police to cut their costs?... I doubt it.
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Old 07-30-2013, 03:52 PM   #23
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I agree, something doesn't feel right about this situation at all. The city annexed several miles south, now they have to service water and sewer and security, this adds to the police departments area to cover, with two less officers. Other police departments in the 'area' say we are understaffed as it is ( no I will not say who said ). and Caretaker, yes it is the police job to stop and ticket lawbreakers, which is a funding of the city and department. Maybe our Mayor and city manager could enlighten us in their decisions to 'demand' the police to cut their costs?... I doubt it.
You just made it clear that Tickets are REVENUE for the city. It is NOT about keeping the public safe.

As far as the mayor and city manager Demanding the police cut their costs. More then likely they were asked to cut back so the city could put resources elsewhere like providing water and sewer to those recently annexed areas they just had to have for the tax base. Now if you have any doubts of Their decisions or concerns with Why they decided certain things. call them up or send them an email and ASK them. I am sure they will give you a great answer.
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Old 08-12-2013, 09:11 AM   #24
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How many officer's are on the streets? As far as Tickets for Revenue that doesn't go back to the Police Department it goes to the City. I would venture to say that if there aren't enough Police on the streets that the citation count will go down due to having to answer calls. Also what kind of safety issue is there for both the Citizens of Marble Falls and the Police Officers if they are cutting positions at the Police Department?
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Old 08-12-2013, 10:39 AM   #25
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There are 2 officers on days and 2 on nights with a Sergeant working a split to cover the busiest times.
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