The Mayor’s intergovernmental affairs staff released to aldermen this week a new version of the administration’s police reform ordinance and various briefing documents explaining how it compares to two alternative aldermanic proposals.
On Monday, Corporation Counsel Steve Patton held a series of briefings with aldermen on the new reform plan, which includes the budget appropriation for the two new police oversight agencies.
Documents distributed to aldermen:
- Updated Police Accountability Draft Ordinance – This is the new version of the police reform ordinance which includes updated language on the budget for COPA and for the new Public Safety Deputy within the city’s Inspector General’s Office. Under the revised plan, the Civilian Office of Police Accountability (COPA) will receive 1% of the Chicago Police Department’s annual appropriation, excluding grant funds. Based on CPD’s 2016 budget of $1.45 billion, COPA would receive about $14 million, nearly double what Independent Police Review Authority (IPRA) received in 2016. (On Monday, we reported that enterprise funds, such as money from O’Hare and Midway Airport, would also be excluded, but according to the updated ordinance, that money would be part of the percentage.) The IG’s office will also get a funding bump, from 0.1% of the city’s corporate fund to 0.14%.
- Ervin (FAIR Cops) Ordinance Comparison – This document outlines which aspects of Ald. Jason Ervin’s (28) FAIR Cops Ordinance the administration included in their police reform plan. According to this chart, one recommendation–that the City Council be allowed to force the police department to implement a recommendation offered by the new Public Safety Deputy–was not included. The chart notes that the city reviewed practices in other jurisdictions and found that “the function of an IG is to identify issues and make recommendations; none use or recommend a mechanism that makes such recommendations binding or mandatory.”
- Hairston Ordinance Comparison – One provision in Ald. Leslie Hairston’s (5) police reform ordinance was not included, according to this chart. Ald. Hairston called for the creation of a selection process for the new chief administrator that involves community input. The chart notes that IPRA Chief Administrator Sharon Fairley will stay on as the interim chief administrator for COPA until the City Council creates a permanent mechanism for how her successor should be appointed. That mechanism will likely be drafted when the Council officially creates the Community Oversight Board, the third prong in the reform process, which is expected to be considered in the next six to nine months.
- IPRA/COPA Matrix – This chart compares IPRA’s current powers and duties with that of COPA, what Ald. Haiston had called for in her police reform ordinance, and what the mayor’s Police Accountability Task Force recommended. One interesting point: the chief administrator of COPA may be a former CPD member (civilian or officer) or former employee of the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office so long as it wasn’t within five years of the appointment. IPRA has no such restrictions, the PATF report recommended the five year cooling period, while Ald. Hairston’s ordinance specifically said a chief administrator can’t have had any prior employment with either agency.
- Public Safety Deputy/FAIR Cops Matrix – Similar to the above chart, this document compares the proposed role of the Public Safety Deputy, the recommendations outlined in Ald. Ervin’s FAIR Cops ordinance, and the recommendations of the PATF report.