Don’t be fooled: After careful review, Mayor Schaaf’s proposed budget for FY2021-23 makes significant increases to the police budget, ignoring both the demands of the People of Oakland to #DefundOPD and invest in community services and programs. Schaaf’s proposal promises to increase the police budget to $351 million in the fiscal year of 2023.
We will not allow increased policing in our communities. Our demands are clear – we are REJECTING five decisions in Libby’s budget proposal to: 1.) Increase the police budget;
2.) Invest in cop academies;
3.) Formalize and legitimize OPD’s overtime abuses;
4.) Invest $19 million on police buildings; and
5.) Spend $500K to plan for a new $500 million dollar OPD headquarters.
In addition, we demand complete and transparent access to Schaaf’s proposed budget. Many people speaking during public comment on the City Council meeting yesterday reported finding it difficult to access all of the information when looking at the budget on the website. Our people keep hitting roadblocks to the Mayor’s proposed budget but we will continue to demand that changes are implemented immediately to make the proposal readily available and accessible to the people. “The document and links released on Friday give virtually no opportunity for residents and advocates to respond and do not offer clear explanations of the expenditures and cuts the Mayor intends to make in the next two years. Ironically, the Mayor’s refusal to release a detailed, timely, accessible budget violates the very, Consolidated Fiscal Policy that then-Councilmember Schaaf authored and helped pass in 2013.” Read the Refund Oakland Coalition’s statement on the Mayor’s late budget release.
After a long week waiting for the reveal of Mayor Schaaf’s late budget proposal, City Council met this Monday, May 10th to review and discuss her proposal. The Mayor disclosing her proposed budget a week after the legal deadline is both irresponsible, and divisive to City Council, community organizations, and the people of Oakland who are held to strict legal standards and deadlines around the budget. Schaaf continues to try to undermine the movement to pass a real People’s Budget by reducing the amount of time to provide informed feedback about the 500-page long document. We won’t be deterred and will continue to demand full transparency and accountability from the Mayor and City Administration during every step of the City budget negotiations.
ACTION ALERT: We highly recommend people turn out to the City Council Townhalls (beginning this week) to share your public opinion on the Mayor’s budget proposal with your councilmembers. The community budget forums welcome any and all community input, feedback and questions around the budget process and negotiations. Click below to find a townhall in your district area. Find your district’s townhall.