Chief Steve Anderson’s remarks ob body cameras

(Photo: WKRN)

• It is an honor to represent the men and women of the Metropolitan Police Department, several of whom are seated behind me, as we discuss our budget request for fiscal year 2017-18 and beyond.

• It is our continued privilege to serve as the guardians for Nashville’s families and visitors. We continue to build partnership with the community at-large, working together in solving problems and improving quality of life in neighborhoods throughout the city.

• During 2016, the men and women of our police department supported 648 neighborhood and business groups. We attended 2,265 meetings with citizens, an average of more than six meetings a day, every day of the year.

• Thanks to the partnerships across the city, and the tremendous work of our officers and professional support staff, and despite a rapidly rising population, we were able to hold overall major crime relatively in check from 2015 to 2016, with an increase of about one percent.

• With your backing, and that of the Metropolitan Council, we have been keeping pace with attrition to maintain a fully staffed police department of 1,440 officers.

• But, as Nashville continues to experience tremendous growth and development, the police department must also grow and do more than just keep pace with attrition.

• We know that public safety must be a priority if our city is to continue attracting new residents and businesses, and if our existing families are to continue enjoying the quality of life for which Nashville has become known.

• Today, we are proposing an operating budget increase of $26 million. This increase is highlighted by a proposal to grow the police department by 128 new officers. These new officers would contribute to our public safety mission in a number of ways.

• We would like to present our proposals in somewhat of a priority order.

• First, we are requesting a total of $8,242,900 to replace and upgrade our current Mobile Data Computers as well as the AVL Hardware and Software. The current in-car computer system is six years old. The AVL hardware and software is eleven years old.

MDCs with Printers and Mounts 4,729,700
AVL/GPS upgrade 3,513,200
TOTAL 8,242,900
• Notable changes to this replacement and upgrade include:
• Sliding overhead trunk tray to house equipment and free up trunk space for other public safety type equipment.
• Streamlining the cockpit area for improved safety, comfort and efficiency. Everything will be removed from cockpit except tablet, printer, keyboard and mount.
• Necessary to support an integrated camera system. (Makes the car a hotspot.)

Next, an integrated Body Worn Camera—Dash Camera System
Integrated Dash Cam System (880)—Body Worn Cam (3,100) with upload storage. 20,857,000
Disaster Recovery (Back up servers) 9,905,000
Wireless Upload Capability 2,235,000
TOTAL 32,997,000

• The total cost of hardware, software and infrastructure for the camera projects and in-car computer update is $41,239,900. We are requesting that funds for the hardware, software and infrastructure come from the Capital Improvement Budget.

• Then, there must be additional Human Resource to successfully facilitate the operation of the camera system.

• 24 FTEs—Sergeants to facilitate camera program 2,070,500
• 2 FTEs—Public Information Office 187,000
• 7 FTEs—IT Technicians 728,100
• 5% Premium Pay for officers utilizing cameras 4,973,300
• Non Salary (IT maintenance and initial issue)

TOTAL 8,930,400

• We understand that this is a significant expenditure of the public funds. In my tenure as chief I have never made a request for funding that in any way approaches this amount. I believe, however, that this is a necessary expenditure. I also believe, and want to emphasize, that if Nashville is to have a successful camera program we must embrace it in its totality. This means a full implementation of the program, taking no shortcuts.

• Our proposals also include the following:
• The implementation of a pilot walking patrol program with 22 of the new officers.

• The addition of 48 officers across the eight precincts (2 officers for each shift) would be utilized to reduce response times.

• We would add 22 officers next fiscal year as part of the gradual staffing build-up for the opening of a 9th full service precinct in fiscal year 2020-21. A total of 66 new officers will be needed for the opening of the new precinct. We propose to add the other 44 over the next two fiscal years.

• I also want to briefly touch on some other areas of our budget request.

• We are asking for $2.3 million for the staffing of Special Events throughout the city, which continue to grow. As you know, this line item allows us to staff Special Events such as the New Year’s Eve and 4th of July Celebrations, Christmas Parade, Live on the Green, the Marathon, and many other large gatherings with off-duty officers. This way, neighborhood coverage is not impacted.

• Due to the workload at our Crime Laboratory, we are asking for $1.6 million to hire five new scientists and 2 forensic technicians. We want very much to use science to help solve burglaries and other property crimes. We have seen a significant increase in requests for fingerprint analysis. Additional scientists will help reduce a backlog of requested fingerprint and forensic biology testing.

• We are also asking for funding to expand our Domestic Violence Division, Traffic Unit and Criminal Investigations components to keep up with increasing caseloads and requests.

• We are proposing to add two positions to our Behavioral Health Services component due to the remarkable increased demand for critical incident debriefing and counseling services for officers over the past five years.

• Mayor Barry, I know that you visit our officers regularly and learn, first hand, of their commitment and tremendous hard work. I am very proud of the work they do and I am very happy that you continue to spend time with them.

• Thank you for your continued support, and we would be pleased to answer any questions you may have.