Long Beach : Police Union Belatedly Endorses Proposition E
The Long Beach Police Officers Assn. on Wednesday came out in support of Proposition E, a ballot measure that would add 75 officers to the Police Department and levy a property tax to pay for them.
Association President Mike Tracy said the union endorsed Proposition E because there is “a critical need for police in this city.”
The police union withheld support until Wednesday, Tracy said, because it wanted to make sure that the estimated $7.3 million the tax could generate would not go toward administrative jobs or special task forces.
Tracy said City Council members have assured the union that most of the money would pay for 70 patrol officers and five sergeants. About $1.5 million would buy cars, radios and uniforms and pay for training, according to Bob Torres, the city’s budget manager.
Councilman Les Robbins had accused the union of withholding its support for its own political purposes. If crime continues to escalate, Robbins said, voters would be turned off by the incumbents and would instead turn to candidates backed by the police union in future elections. Union leaders denied Robbins’ allegations.