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Okay, it is 530 so I’d like to call this meeting the special meeting of the Longmont housing and Human Services Advisory Board to order. Our first order of business is whether there is any public invited to be heard.
No, there is not I did not get any requests from anybody to join the meeting, either in person or
Thank you. And it does look like we have 1234567 board members so we do have a quorum. Okay, so the reason that we got together tonight is the follow up to our regular meeting where we discussed the potential making a potential request to have council to redirect 10% of the policing budget towards the housing Human Services Advisory housing, Human Services budget. So we do have two variations of the letter one created by the group, the board member group that was put together to look at language given the feedback that was given during the last meeting. And then another variation which was put together by staff and consideration of their insight into the mechanisms of Longmont, city government and how that may or may not influence success. So I thought what would be helpful if somebody wants to just jump in and make a motion and we can have all this discussion within that. At what I thought would be helpful is just to hear from each group or representative of each group on the rational Behind the wording and the document, and proceed that way. I am open to emotion if somebody wants to start there, we’re going to end there anyway. So, you know, we can have all this discussion within the motion as well. It’s I’m agnostic on which way it happens, but I’m certain that some discussion will be of benefit to the group.
Mr. Vice Chair.
Thanks, Mr. Chair. If you want the motion now, I can make it I would actually probably be more comfortable hearing from folks before. Before emotions made just to make sure that before we anyone here on this board states and opinion one way or another that that everybody involved in the process has a chance to get their thoughts out. I think that might be helpful.
I tend to agree with that if that’s acceptable to the other board members, and let’s go ahead and do that. So our boards committee not committee. our working group was comprised of Bram, Madeline and Deanna Yep. Thank you. So why doesn’t one of you open it up with your if you can just, you know, some background on the structure the letter and why it was you wanted to create it the way that you did.
So you’re all just not doing anything else outside.
Excellent. Thank you, Madeline.
the rationale, my rationale behind it was to make it
make it a little
more firm, little firm merger of
two City Council. So They wouldn’t just read it and push it aside. And so I spent a considerable amount of time writing a letter, and I forwarded that letter to.
I folded that
I forwarded that letter to Ella Berto and Ella Berto. I’m not sure. I was. I don’t know.
I thought it would be shared with all the board members but I’m pretty sure he edited it.
So, yeah, other than that, that was my my intent to make it stronger.
Right So, so. So for mammen sake Yeah, Madeline’s sent her letter and then the subject and then I made those edits and then I sent it out. To the subcommittee one last time for revisions, and then Graham, revise it and send it back out for any further comments or revision. Hearing none, I sent I gave that to Nicole to send out to the board. So it was based on Madeline’s original lender, and then Graham’s revisions, my edits and graduations to that to those edits.
Thank you, Roberto.
Madeline, I just wanted to ask you on this point of, of edits, are you satisfied with the way that the letter turned out relative to your own intentions?
Oh, yeah, yeah, it’s okay. I just would have preferred to have been notified of that. But but it reads Well, it’s, uh, it’s a little lengthy, but maybe my maybe mine was too I don’t know.
Okay. All right. Thank you.
I have one other question. Ella Berto and Karen created one right? They created a little okay. I guess my question is if we were working on this if they were going to do it.
Well, why did they need while you?
Wow, what was our purpose?
Yeah, that’s a good question, Madeline. So if you don’t mind, let’s do this. Let’s hear from grandma and Deanna. And then I think when we address the second version, Ella baritone, Karen will have an opportunity to give a more detailed response to your question. That’s
Okay. Thank you.
Deanna, would you like to weigh in?
So, you know, I
spent a lot of time reflecting and thinking about how this letter should be drafted and the most effective way to try and communicate our points and I think obviously, the main difference between these two position Is the advocating 10% reallocation from the police budget. And I can see the pros and cons to both of these approaches. But I think that subcommittee in our discussions, were we were interested in two things, right, like, making sure that we increase the budget if we can for our services, and also sort of being a little incendiary to try and get the ball rolling to get the community engaged and having this discussion. Right. And I think if you take away that concern, then the second letter is probably more effective. I’m sort of, I guess, giving you my thoughts on the second letter, and I’m not sure that you asked for that, but I’m doing it anyway. But it may be more effective in terms of not alienating counsel, but it certainly isn’t gonna really push the envelope. I don’t think but. So I think we all need to talk about whether that’s our motive here or not our motivation.
That’s really helpful. Thank you, Graham. Would you like to Comments?
Sure, I think as a general report about how the meeting went is Deanna and Madeline both submitted revised versions of the letter. And then the committee reviewed both of those versions and liberto you know, in real time before a sort of cut and paste and, and wove those two letters together, and then we added some language and took away some language. So that’s how the structure of the meeting went such that liberto came up with the letter you see here. I think I personally was a little surprised about how this subcommittee one I feel like the feedback some of the feedback I got from the larger group prior to included removing the relationship with the police included detailing how much money and how is it to be distributed, etc. And I think the subcommittee group decided that a lot of those issues were in the to counsel and not us, and so seemed like we were settled in on the letter needs to be sort of this value proposition. And then we added some interesting points about suggesting a request feedback from, you know, VIP OC groups, about their interface with the police, etc. and a couple other main points, but yeah, I think the the intent is to continue to be
incendiary or provocative or
to make a statement about number one, mainly that nonprofits need funding we did before COVID. And now all the more because of COVID. And we think it’s worth mentioning and relating, you know, the issue about the Public Safety Department in their funds. And then we mentioned those three programs which are you know, Angela initiative and, and, and those and we discussed that and we discussed how those are in large parts funded by grants, though there is a baseline funding, which comes from the department. Anyway, we wanted to specifically call those out as something we really want to encourage and appreciate about public safety.
I think that’s all I have to say about.
I’ve got a couple questions, but I want to, you know, think let’s just try to have a dialogue like we did the last meeting. Well, let me think through this, I probably should have done this before we jumped on. Actually, if I may. Let me ask Ella baritone, Karen to kind of walk through their version. And then let’s open it up for discussion and make sure everybody’s comfortable with with
Just pensive. That’s kind
of my general attitude, Mr. Chair.
Yes, I totally get it. Okay. All right. So, Karen L. Umberto, do one of you want to open up with a kind of viewpoint on your own creation?
How about Karen?
So so. So Madeline, to your point? Your question is it it really wasn’t our intent. And also I’ll
write a letter. And
sorry, hang on one second. Karen. I think you’re cutting out a little bit. Is it just me or
Yeah, no, I can’t hear.
I can’t hear her. You’re cutting out
the poster. Better.
no, no, no, no.
was better what you just said was better.
Oh, I so I guess Oh, yeah, no. So, um,
so the the intention wasn’t for, for staff writing staff to write a letter. And but I was stressed at the at the last meeting that did that 10% redirect. I felt very strongly was a non starter. And oh, certainly I’m involved in the budget process. I know what we’re looking at in
my budget here and I can’t I can’t hear Karen.
Brilliant. So don’t worry about it. Don’t worry about it. Let’s just go ahead and go ahead with the meeting. It’s okay.
you know, so really was that 10%? And
going back to what I think what what Brian had identified in terms of I wanted to try to highlight, and maybe it’s that you really what’s the purpose? What are the facts what what I had written down was money for Human Services is our number one priority, and then advocate address our whole turn our community address V, and their role, and then to really talk about what is our role as an advisory board in that work and to be provocative. So those were the five things that I had written down. So what so I just felt very strongly and I wanted to just articulate it that if city council representatives Letter Council, City Council staff, what do you think? That is what I think is what is what alligretto. And I wrote so that the we wrote that. And so if council asked the question, I wanted the advisory board to know this is how I would answer that question. I see that having more money for humans, it is your honor. After that advocate path, I am certainly working on other avenues to get funding. We do want to start investing I think more in how do we keep people even out of needing to contact the police department know for getting there humans. I would make sure that everyone help you start in life and
that they aren’t evolving.
So they aren’t having to call 911 when they need basic services. I think we can all. I mean, my sense is that we can all agree with that. And we do need some more money and greater investments. That and I just don’t think the same 10% from the services budget when I know we are, we are going to be our revenues, point $1 million, the interest. But I just think that our message about the importance of funding, obviously, will get lost. As I think of a path forward if we advocate for get so we’re going to get 2.1 $9 you know, no, but is there more money that we can try to advocate for and I think we get in When budget even though we are looking at revenue, so I’m just saying we’re working it trying to get a funny we’re trying to stay on course and present you an offer public safety services very strongly that that is not the right strategy or effectiveness. So so then if counsel asked Ellie Berto on said yes, Karen so what do you think? What I would say is what I is what is in the letter are many parts that you tried to capture the essence of some of the things you saw in the letter just gather. If we even include Hey, we were gonna, we considered the 10% asked and so we tried to tried le Barrett to try to capture what we thought. We’re going to
out saying, Give us 10%
that that was the that was the main.
So I wanted to know that they asked me a question. What do you think, Karen? That is what I would say.
And I just thought it was important for you all to know.
I don’t know. I would like to be one.
Yeah, so thank you. And before Roberto speaks, so we could hear at least I could most of what you said, I followed the thread. You may check your audio settings. If it’s a new computer, maybe there’s something or it could be your, your, your your earbuds.
just just throwing it out there and we’ll let Phil and
Brian I couldn’t hear Karen just for the record.
Okay, thank you, Madeline. Alabama, Alberto.
Yeah, I think I’m gonna I think to Karen’s point, right when I mean, I brought it up at the subcommittee, my concerns about the 10%. And the the, you know, I agree what was what we talked about that we have one opportunity, and I think for me, I wanted to honor the idea of the provocativeness. And they’re at the idea of addressing you know, the realities of of institutional and systemic racism. That is everywhere. And Longmont is not immune from that. So I wanted to make sure that that was up front and center, which why when I drafted it, it’s in the first or second paragraph. And at the same time I’ve been I’ve been talking to nonprofits, I’ve been hearing from nonprofits. I’ve been seeing surveys at nonprofits filling out of the funders collaborative and just seeing and hearing the reality of the struggles they’re facing as far as as far as financially is concerned. I sat on a couple of committees for both community Foundation’s long one embolden Foundation, that when they were giving out when they’re awarding some of their COVID response dollars. And so I really, really believe that it’s highly important that whenever we can, if we can, if it’s possible, that we increase the level of funding that we can provide, to ensure that that that, you know, some of our most important safety net nonprofits in the area, continue to thrive and serve in a time when they when they have been needed more than ever before. So that’s that was that’s kind of my, my focus is want to make sure that we honor the what the board is looking for as far as addressing racism. And we want to make sure that we’re the most successful as possible to increase funding to support these nonprofits. So that’s that that was my my Might take when I when I help draft this letter from the staff. Thank you, Karen.
Oh, Can I Can you hear me now? I took my your butt out. Yes. All right. Thank you. Oh, sorry.
It was same kind of I can hear.
There’s like coming in on unlike every other word, which is making it hard to understand like the full context,
right. That’s why I was putting my earbuds. I don’t know.
Go ahead and give it a shot. Karen, it’s important that you’re
getting a few more to say I just wanted to check to see if this audio is better.
I find it to be better. Better. Okay. Yeah. Okay.
Okay, so let’s go ahead and have a discussion. Is there anybody who has Oh Graham, go ahead.
So I’m curious to ask staff. If the
Is it that you don’t think the right thing to do is to reallocate 10%? Or you just don’t think it’s an ask that counsel will take seriously or absorb? Like, I guess which one is that? Which one is it?
I would say both Graham
I think it’s I think it’s both so
I answered your question so I don’t where they want me.
But thank you. Yeah, cuz you know, because we did talk about that there are I mean, that no one is perfect, obviously. But that I think the fact that you all had quite a bit of discussion asked me out, um, you know, some of the work that that the llama department is doing, has been doing, who to really try when they do come across contact with people who have health issues that’s ever I think this department believes darn strongly that those problems should not be solved in the US. So they have put into place the programs really try to divert people who are really struggling from the criminal justice system, getting the services. We heard that I think from adilyn know Mellon, here’s the but when she talked about when you know that money, Glenda had really been talking to my Butler about that. So So, you know, I just don’t then we also talked about not punishing another department in this. So, so I just believe that it’s not the I don’t believe in that strategy. And and I also think
But I think everything else in the letter, you know, if it was at 10%, I think you did a great job with the letter. I think it reflected our conversation, though. I might not agree with everything, but I’ll have to do everything. But it really is that.
Can I say something?
Sure, yes. Karen. Go ahead. I just why can’t we say like, 10% of the budget that we’re asking for, if the police can use that 10% to do to put it toward Human Services, you know, I mean, why why would we have to take it away from the police when, if we, if they, you know, a lot of 10% of that budget to go toward Human Services and that were there. He wouldn’t take Get away from the police. But they’d have to prove or show that 10% of the budget would go toward helping mental health in situations like that.
I don’t The only thing I would say to that, Karen, is that when you when you talk about a $2.1 million reduction, you’re talking about layoffs. I mean, you really are. It’s been, so it’s not. Not that easy. So, we’re just saying, I think so. That kind of hit on top of the reduction that we’re gonna have is basically we’re saying, hey, pay off.
folks that work in public safety.
have additional money.
thank you. Um, I so I can say, for me, I fully understand where to start. If it’s coming from in terms of advising what they think the city will do, I can also say that I think our police, I think our police budget needs to be reduced. I think the money needs to be out of the hands of people who have who have guns. I think that it needs to very clearly be distinct and separate. And so I think that it’s really important to not just say, in this time and to what we’re reacting to, that it is not just about increasing Human Services, it is also about reducing the possibility of those funds getting reallocated next year within the police department to something that can be used to harm members of our community. I know that.
I think it’s, for me, it’s really
it’s tough because there are I do think there are good Police officers, but the system in which they operate, regardless of where that is, is a system that relies on using violence and guns to ensure compliance with laws. And I really just think that in order to expand our imagination about what it looks like to have public safety, it means that we need to reallocate those funds to other places. I mean, even just looking at the total budget for public safety in Longmont, and then the police state budget as compared to like the human services that we’re putting into the community here. There’s a huge difference there. And granted, that’s not all the city is spending on housing and Human Services. But there’s a huge disconnect there. And I think that it’s really important to make a statement that this is not that this is about responding to that call from communities of black Indigenous and other people of color that saying we need to divest from police specifically and invest in community scaffolding. And so I think like for me, I don’t I, I will always say like, let’s find more human services, but it’s important to have that pairing of divesting and investing together.
Thank you, Caitlin.
Other questions, comments? Jake? Yes.
It’s Mr. Chair. Um, I take it we’re kind of in the general discussion section of this conversation now. So I, I think I would ask folks on the board and I first of all, I want to say I appreciate the position staff has and and I understand where they’re coming from. You know, a letter from an advisory board saying something like this could certainly start a community wide conversation that isn’t necessarily a community wide conversation that staff or Council on half I get that I get the position that the That, that that creates for them. But I think for and I understand also, you know, kind of the fundamental thing that we have to ask ourselves in this conversation is what are we trying to do here? Are we trying to make a statement about exactly what Caitlin’s talking about the gap between how we fund law enforcement and how we fund human services? Or are we trying to simply make a statement about funding for our, you know, our funding cycle and the plan that that Council on? Those are, I think, the choices and whatever and wherever you come down in that conversation about what the point of this is, I think we’re going to you’re going to come down here. For me, the point of it’s pretty clear. And I think we as a board have an obligation to speak, you know, plainly about, you know, since we started the conversation. You know, about whether or not law enforcement is really the best and most effective provider of human services in our community about whether we as a community believes That we should be asking law enforcement to remain the number one mental health provider in Boulder County and in our community? Or do we want to say, hey, council recognizing fully, that the likelihood of councils seriously considering a 10%. And I think it’s I want to make this acknowledgement recognizing that they would seriously consider making that budget adjustment. It’s pretty small, pretty thin, pretty slim. But we as a board, starting that conversation, and encouraging that discussion and saying, you know, what are we as a community going to try and do to create, to create an environment where all of our all of our residents feel safe? And where our law enforcement and our human services sector doing the roles that they’re supposed to do? And asking that question which we’ve asked many times in these calls,
our decision services being provided by law enforcement on the Human Services side really someone you know, do you need someone with a gun showing up to a demand to to mental health welfare check if you need someone. And I think what we’re doing by sending that first letter, which I applaud that the task force for the work and I think staff for their assistance as well and something I’m sure it’s not the most comfortable thing in the world. What we do by sending that first letter to council the saying, No, we want to have this conversation. We want to have this conversation about human services needs, and whether or not we need to reconfigure some of this. So I am fully supportive of the first letter I’ll wait to, to make a motion until there’s further discussion. But that’s, that’s where I’m at right now.
Thank you. Thank you. And
well, I am not in support of the first letter I I think asking to defund. 10% is not only realistic, but we do not know really How the department is working right now. I’d rather see somebody do an audit on the department and really see how they’re doing. I know they have statistics. I know they have boards that look over what they do, I’d really like to know how they are doing and hear from the public how they think they’re doing. Um, and then, you know, I read the letter that Karen sent from was a Dan.
And, you know, he taught that
email that Polly passed through from
Yeah, well, that’s right, Polly site. And he, you know, he’s talked about more work still needs to be done. I’d rather find out what that work is, you know, I’d rather ask counsel to really see how the department the police department is doing and then see what still needs to be done because I, I, I don’t think it’s good to just label department a certain way when they’re, they may not be like that. It’s like, I guess I take it kind of personally because a lot of people talk about social workers in that manner also. And I’ve worked really hard for like 20 years. And it just feels like kind of a label to me without even knowing what kind of work I’ve done without really knowing what kind of work but police department has done. And they, yes, they do take guns out to these calls. And thank God because I’ve been with them in the middle of the night, going into a home and having to take children out of the house, when you just go in there and think it’s just gonna be a little talk with parents, and it becomes violent and scary and you have to take kids out of the house. And so I think to just think that
just hope that these colors will not be violent is just
I just don’t know what I would have done without them or what we would do without them.
And so I am not. I would. I’m glad staff came up with another letter. I think the letter that you all did was really amazing.
I really liked it. I just can’t really get on board with it. I think like Madeline the work she’s done with the boulder police department is amazing. You know what happened there was absolutely horrible and I admire her for getting involved and and you know, really putting herself out there to take care of that because she was asked to do it. Because they knew she’d do a good job but I I just
I can’t go along with it. Not knowing What how the department is working? Because I mean, do you want to get in your car after people vomit all over in it? Do you want to be spitting? The I mean, the job is so hard and not know how that department is really working or not. I think it’s just a slap in the face to say we can defend U
turn Phillips Yeah, I just did anybody see that editorial about that policeman that wrote in this morning and the times call? You just got that basically, what he was saying in the end there is that the police could use more training, you know, that and why couldn’t we, you know, say something about taking that 10% and using it for training on mental health issues. You know, I don’t know why. Maybe I see it too, simply. But why we can’t you know, but the guy was just saying, you know, people want them and the police have given him that and people want this and the police have given him that and he finally said, you know, Could use with more training, police officers could use more training on mental health.
Thank you, Caitlin. And then Jake,
I think to respond to that.
there have been several studies done on anti bias training and Mental Health Training for police. And as far as I’m aware, and what I’ve read, which I have actually read fairly extensively on this, there is zero indication that it reduces use of force, or that it protects or reduces the number of black and brown people who are killed in this country. zero evidence. There is an anecdote from a man, a black man who conducted anti bias training for a police force in Texas. They were all in on that training. They did it for three years. They trained every police officer, they trained every member of their public safety team, that same police department. One of those officers he trained, attacked him during protests recently broke his arm and put him in the hospital. That biased Training did not protect that man from being hurt. And I totally got, like the desire and the belief that training can do this. But I think that the training exists within the context of how policing works. And if it’s not evidence based, I don’t think we should put our money into it. I don’t think we should be putting our money into training folks in a way that we don’t know actually protects members of our community, which I think is the thing that like, and also it ends up that like that training budget is still within the control of a police department, which means they’re the ones who are picking who, who’s doing it, how it’s done, you know, those sorts of things. And I just
like, I that’s all I’ll say about that.
Thank you came on, Jake.
Thanks, Mr. Chair, just to echo a little bit of what Caitlin was saying. If you look at some of the work from groups like a Can’t wait You know, some other organizations that have worked on this issue. Um, the data kind of reflects kind of that that reality that that what changes, policing is not necessarily training but as policy and policy changes are made, then then that’s the most effective way to get where we want to go, I think kind of just reflecting on on what Dan said, and I really appreciate what Dan has to say, as I mentioned here before we made up his cup in the city for 14 years. I recognize it’s been awfully hard job that broken mentally. It’s a brutal job. But I think what we’re asking the city to consider by sending this is is not about any one department. It’s not about Longmont. It’s not about any one organization. It’s about a system that isn’t working. It’s not working and how do we want to be as a leader as a community in addressing systematic reform and how do we want to go above you know, having a good police department which I think We do, saying we’re going to make some real systemic changes here, that that really can put us at the forefront of leading. And asking questions about our cops the right delivery system for human services, which is kind of what we’re asking them to do right now, or are the nonprofit’s that we support the right delivery system for those human services? And are those dollars going to be more effectively utilized? If we have additional resources to support those agencies? That’s the core question. I think we’re asking. I think the answer to that question is, is yes, I would ask that. I hope, you know, I’m ready to lead on that. And yeah, I think that’s that’s all say for tonight, unless something else comes up, but that’s Yeah, just appreciate what Caitlin said. And,
I mean, I get what you’re saying, Jake, but you say it’s not against any certain department. But it is Because you’re asking for 2 million from the Longmont police department. Yeah.
Oh, okay, I’m unmuted I
finally get in Sorry I’m late. That’ll double time with the computer thing.
I really think it’s important that we have this conversation publicly. And I applaud Graham for bringing this forward. It is a difficult conversation. But this is the time to do it. We can’t lose momentum. I agree with an however I we are trying to punish a department that has done nothing but try for at least A decade to do everything that it needs to do. You can say that we don’t need a mental health person to go along with them on a ride along. But we do we the police are the frontline of this. Nobody else gets called when somebody who has mental health problems that you love, who’s part of your family. I mean, I know people who’ve done this, they their kid goes bananas, and he’s a full grown person that is living at home because he has autism or whatever, and they call the police. If they don’t mention to the police, that this person is their son, and that he has mental health problems, then the police will assume that this is just somebody who’s threatening them. They have to you have to tell them that this is a mental health person problem and then They will get somebody who specializes in de escalating and these are not people who are part of the police department. They are called their specialists to come along with the police that the police contracted with specifically to help them with this. Because these are people who understand how to de escalate the situation. There isn’t anybody else who’s going to do this because the police are the only people who do do this. They also they are the only connection with homeless people who are causing problems or whatever the you know, so they know how to connect them. They are Sarah Aaron and David Kennedy had been doing this for years.
they’re very heartfelt people. They also don’t put up with a lot of crap either, but they will connect people who are homeless with hope. They’ll connect them with a copy. They’ll connect them with services from the our center. They’ll connect them with all These other things, and they will try to help them. There isn’t anybody else who’s doing this and there isn’t going to be any. The mental Mental Health Partners doesn’t go around and do this stuff because that’s really not their job. This is in the police department’s job, instead of taking, and, as I’ve said before, I’ve lived other places and in my opinion, the the Oakland Police for when I lived there, 35 years ago, they should have been just eliminated top to bottom. They were racist scum. Likewise, the Denver Police Department when I lived there, 30 years ago, we’re just scum. It takes leadership and it takes training, but it also does and it and implicit bias as part of that I talked to chief butler about that six years ago and he explained to me the training that they did, because I had been reading a
reading about it. implicit bias. And
anyway, I guess what I’m saying is, I want to have this conversation. It’s timely. I don’t want to lose momentum, we just lost. john lewis and CT Vickers and these are great leaders in the civil rights movement. And we can’t go backwards, we have to keep our finger on the pulse of holding people accountable. Plus, we’re also hiring a new chief of public safety. And that’s very important. So this community needs to understand that we are not going to allow somebody to be hired, who isn’t aware of these issues and who’s not going to be hiring the right people. That’s where it starts is hiring the right people. If you don’t hire if you hire somebody who’s a racist to begin with, no amount of training is going to fix that. And the I believe our department has tried very, very hard to get the right people in the first place. But I do think it’s useful to have this letter. I think it’s useful to have this discussion. I think it cannot ever do any harm for this community to understand and have it reiterated what this police department does do and what they should not be expected to keep doing. But what they also do do most of the homeless people, I think it’s like 35% of the people who are homeless or homeless because of domestic violence. When the police go to a home where there’s domestic violence happening. They have no idea what’s going to happen.
They have to have a gun.
I don’t like that. Nobody who would do that job. Very few of us would do that job. It’s really difficult. I If I had a family, I would not put myself in that position, but they do. And we need them. So we need to they need to know we hold them accountable. And we need to know the stuff that they do. And this is a good way to start the conversation. Whether I agree with everything in the letter is irrelevant. This is a way to have that conversation. And so I I applaud doing that. Anyway, that’s all I have to say.
Thank you, Caitlin.
Hi, sorry. I feel like I have said a lot here. And I want to make sure that other folks have room to speak as well. I think a couple of things stood out to me from what Councilman Christiansen said. The first is I think the assumption that a reduction in funding is a punishment for police, I think is a really dangerous way to think about how we fund Various things in our city and in our communities. Reducing funding is not a punishment. It’s a reallocation of our priorities. When we reduce school funding, it’s not because we’re punishing schools, when we reduce funding to other areas, it’s not because we’re punishing people for that, in the same way that allocating additional funds is not necessarily a saying you have done the most amazing job. It’s because we’re reallocating our priorities. And I think, to me like that is a really important mental space to be in is that taking funding or saying that we should reallocate funding from the police is not to say it’s because you personally have done a bad job? It’s because we are saying our priority is on funding these community services. Whether you’ve done a good job or not, whether that should be part of your job, is up for debate.
I also think like
there was a mention about
Some people are the only ones who are in contact with homeless folks who are causing issues. And my my response to that is a little bit like, why are they the only ones? If we of course, in some ways, there’s not going to be anyone else, when that’s where we’re putting our funding. There’s no opportunity for alternatives when we are saying that they are the only ones and can be the only ones. The final thing guess is I think it’s great to hire somebody, a head of public safety, who is going to look for hiring right people,
my husband’s life, my children’s life, other members of our community who are black and brown, they cannot rely on us happening to hire the right people. We need systemic changes. So that
like a neighbor calls the cops on my husband because they don’t recognize him because he’s black in a mostly white neighborhood. I can’t rely on the fact that he’s going to be lucky and get a police officer who is not going to turn that violent. I can’t rely on that, like that does not that is not something that I can sleep with at night, knowing that that’s our protection for members of our community. And I think to that extent, it means that like, we need alternatives that people can call, we need ways to, we need systems that are holding them accountable. And it’s not clear to me that we necessarily have those systems when we’re piling a whole bunch of different jobs into the police. One of the ways to hold police accountable and others is by actually separating those job duties, right. So like, and you’re a social worker, having what you do be separate and sort of your scope of practice. Your scope of practice doesn’t include arresting people, you know, as in the same way, having police Like very limiting the scope of their practice is one way we hold accountable, we make sure that we can keep members of our community safe.
Thank you, Caitlin. Karen Phillips, did you have Did you raise your hand? Well, well, no, it’s just, um, you know, as far as I think the conversation needs to be had for sure. And, you know, we however that can happen, because, you know, we know issues, but like, Caitlin was just saying, you know, who’s to know when you knock on the door, if there’s an issue and you know, I mean, how is who we’re going to, we’re going to turn to if you’re not going to turn to the police. And if a policeman comes to the door, like and said, you know, who knows what’s going to be behind that door, and you’re not going to be able to just have a social worker appear out of nowhere to help the situation out. These are spontaneous things that happen immediately. And, you know, the conversation needs to be had and, you know, I think we’ve got to find the Ways of, you know, we consider and talk about this, but there’s no solutions that are happening. So if we open the door to conversations because, like Madeline said, you know, there’s a great pool of people that we should be able to come up with something, but it’s really complicated, and I suppose we need to, you know, start the conversation.
Deanna, did you
raise your hand? This
is not an easy conversation to have. Right. And
generally, the consensus is that the police in Longmont have done a great job with a lot of different things. One of the issues that I had is that as I said at our last meeting, I don’t truly know that as a as a white person experiencing what the police are like in Longmont. That’s one of the things that I suggested we include in that letter is that the police do serve that the city does some investigation and figure out exactly how people in the community aren’t experiencing the police. But I also am very hesitant to jump on to the pattern that I think a lot of white people suffer from, which is like over study over study over study, right? Like we can study this. People have studied this for a while now and things are not changing. I think there’s a lot of value in taking an approach that’s going to encourage conversation. Do I think that they’re going to take 10% of the budget and give it to us? No, they’re not going to do that. It’s a non starter. Do I think that there’s probably going to be some people who are feeling defensive and feeling offended, like we are blaming them? Probably that’s the case. And that’s unfortunate, because I don’t think that’s anybody’s intention, I think, at least on the subcommittee, I can say for myself that the goal here was really to encourage a conversation to try and make people think about securing funding for for nonprofits, but to also really Encourage a conversation about systemic change in our country. And I think there’s a lot of value to having that conversation.
Yes, that’s all I’ll say about it.
Thank you, everybody else. Graham, Graham, Councilmember Christiansen
so I don’t feel like staffs letter will start the conversation. I think it’s well written and I appreciate their time and effort in that. I just don’t think it will start the conversation we want to so if it’s appropriate chair, I’ll motion we submit the first letter.
Okay. Councilmember Christiansen you you wanted to speak.
I like Deanna. I mean, Deana brought up a very good idea, you know, chief butler and Dan benefi does have been walking around the neighborhoods for years and talking to people. And I’ve gone on these things and many people have gone on these these things. And what Marta Marino said to me is, oh, they’re not gonna tell him what they think. And you know, that’s true. You know, when somebody is walking around the neighborhood, you’re not going to say, you know, you cops are like, there, there should be a way that we could start a conversation that would be anonymous where people could call in. Because this because we’re in the process of hiring somebody and you don’t hire. You can’t make policy based on personality. You have to make policy based on having standard protocol, the police when there is a use of force, you have to have a policy For that, otherwise everybody just does what they feel like. And that is not a good bet. It’s not a policy. But having some anonymous thing it can since we can’t have a an open forum, and people would not be
many of the people who came to that with not
many to people who have had bad experiences with police would not come to an open forum would not feel comfortable trying to say what has happened to them. With the police, they wouldn’t be comfortable if they had an anonymous
way that they could
submit some information about their experiences with the police. And I certainly know that my experience is not the same as other people. For instance, I went to a conference a few years ago. My son forgot that I was did that he had the keys and he locked me out of the house because I showed up earlier than was expected and I had to break into my own house
Henry Louis Gates, who’s very well known, got arrested for breaking into his own house, because he lost his key.
But he got arrested because he was black.
I probably I was thinking when I as I was breaking into my house in high heels and a skirt and up a stepladder, that I probably somebody might call the police on me, but probably not, you know. So my experience is very different. And I know that, but we need to hear from people anonymously about what their experience has been, as whatever, whatever. Whether it’s as a woman, as someone who’s gay as somebody who’s Latino, and somebody black, whatever, some anonymous way that they we can know whether they feel that they have been unfairly treated by our police department. That’s the only way we’ll ever find out. So I, I thought Deana suggestion about
a way to do that would be an interesting thing. I’m not sure how to do that. But
it’s hard to get ahold of the people who should be telling us their stories. They don’t interact often with people because they don’t trust them because they’re badly treated. So, you know, why would they trust people? Anyway, I, I’m going to check into seeing how we can do that.
Thank you. I’ll just throw in a couple thoughts real quick. So from listening to everybody. You know, one thing is clear, everybody wants a safer community. And I think part of the Certainly the intention of either letter is to drive towards a solution for a safer community. The one of the principal intentions we’re showing in this is that we believe we can get there by having greater levels of Human Services funding. And I certainly agree with with both of those. My concern my own concerns with the 10% are that first, I do think it’ll provoke a conversation. I have no doubt about that. I think it will very much be perceived as punitive. And I, I feel like part of that is because we don’t really have precise targets for how that money would be used. So it’s really a pretty round number so really ends up taking on a symbolic Meaning rather than a practical meaning in terms of how does this money create a safer community? And, you know, I would I would love to wave my magic wand and make happen. I don’t have one. But if I had one, I would waive it and say, you know, what is the path to a safer community in terms of like, I worry that if there are let’s say that, that taking 10% away means fewer police on the street? I don’t know what would happen. Honestly, I don’t know what losing that amount of funding would mean but let’s say it meant fewer police then my question is, well, are our Human Services Agency currently actually equipped to deal with the kinds of situations the police are going into? Or do they need training In order to be equipped to go into these more volatile situations, and if so are we asking for funds to train those human service agencies? Is there a transition plan from the police as a partner, moving responsibilities away from them and towards non police, non armed elements of our community? That’s what I, you know, I would think, okay, let’s have a transition plan. And so I fear that this will be perceived as punitive. And it will put us at odds with the police department who actually serves as a critical partner and a lot of the services that do happen, granted, a relatively imperfect partner. So those are just you know, some of my own concerns, but I think whatever however this boat goes, we certainly can acknowledge that we do want to say for a better future community and there is a sense of urgency around doing this. And there is a moment that we need to capture. So, you know, I think the the disagreements tend to come in exactly how to do that to the best possible effect. And frankly, we don’t know. I mean, there is this new conversation for everybody we just don’t know. So that’s my 10 cents.
and I have a local here.
Go ahead, Madeline.
Now, I’m wondering, having heard everybody know, I’m wondering, should we be sending a letter at all
Have to drop the bomb didn’t chip?
Well, I mean, and then the other side of that is Karen is going to be asked by counsel, what does she think she told us what she thinks? So why are we doing anything? I don’t know. I’m questioning
our intent. Thank you.
counsel and counsel may not asked me. So I’ve just said if then that’s how I would answer it. Might I?
Thanks for a practical question for Karen and Alberto and staff. What what happens from here with this, if anything? I mean, does this go to city manager in the mayor and say, when do we want to do we want to put this on our agenda and agenda what what does it does it just get sent what happens if we were to adopt the first letter? What happens?
You know, I would say, I would say that would be part of the direction from the advisor for what you want to happen, I think.
I think all I had suggested that we outsource, so we show up to the meeting. I think he’ll be part of whatever letter you adopt or whatever. And it’s like, that’s the first part and then how do we want How do you want to do? So, remember, Christensen has some ideas about that. But I think you know, that’s that’s
and Councilmember Christiansen you’re You have the floor and I’m going to quickly escape to the restroom and be back but don’t let my my short absence stop you from talking.
Okay. Um, two things. Anybody wants to see how the police spend their money can look at the budget. It’s public information, and it’s broken down into line items. You know, this much is spent on radios this semester spent on video cameras, this much is spent on software upgrades as much as spent on salaries, this much is spent on pensions, etc. So that might be informative to some people. I would think that this would be sent to
the city manager
and the city clerk for distribution to City Council, and then I would think we would put it on the agenda. I, I think that unless we do that it won’t be put on the agenda because
asked for about two months ago for presentation on the police department’s use of force. That hasn’t happened. Anyway, yeah, I think we should do this because we need to keep the momentum of this moment going to have these discussions. However difficult they are. Nothing happens unless you have difficult conversations. I mean, nothing happens. So let’s have a difficult conversation.
Wow, Brian, you’re fast. I’m impressed.
I told you
but you know, women were just as much slower.
And I washed my hands. Jake.
Thanks, Mr. Chair. Um,
you know, I’m struggling with this a little bit because I think our intent here is is righteous. Our intent here is good. I am struggling with a couple of points and this is this is just kind of where I’m at, I want if we’re going to send one of these two letters, I would rather be the first letter. My challenge is, if we send this from the board on what looks like will be a divided vote A divided conversation and then if if staff has their own reservations about it and is asked to comment on and this isn’t, you know, just commented all about about staff, I would, you know, staffs entitled to their opinion, but I recognize that we don’t necessarily have you know, if we send the first letter, the strongest advocate for it, potentially presenting it to Council, they can present it and we can be there to argue our case, what have you, um, I’m struggling with. I’m struggling with that a little bit. And I don’t necessarily want to send something when we are divided, and have staff go in with their own issues with it, and I don’t No with that represents to us as well as pot as it possibly can. I don’t know what that represents. So I guess I’m going to voice those concerns. I’m still I mean, I obviously seconded the motion. I’m still in favor of it. But I’m going to voice those concerns. And I’d love to hear from members of the board on those two specific issues about whether, you know, we individually can advocate for these positions or whether because my hope had been and in that I was the one who made the motion for the subcommittee, my hope had been that we could construct something that would get unanimous support.
So I’m struggling a little bit with that. So
thank you. So and then Taryn Phillips.
I guess I would rather see us take a little bit more time and really think you know, I’m hearing what Madeline said like, Where are we? At this point? I would like to see real change in the community. I would like to find out if and what Problems are in the police department in Longmont. And then I would like to spend some time maybe it’s a community meeting, or maybe what Polly said, you know, surveys are sent out. I do that all the time at work. And it’s amazing what you get back if it’s anonymous, and you can just, you know, get information that way and then really see what change we need to do. You know, much more.
I guess that’s how I’d like to see it. I’d like to explore how things are working on the warm up police department, whether that’s City Council, checking it out, or community members, or maybe there’s already a committee that does that, finding out what the needs are, and then finding out what people in the community say about it and then going from there, but I just think sending these letters is not the way to go.
Thank you It’s Karen Phillips and then Karen Roni. Well, I’ve just how is the best way? How is the best thing to do to get the conversation going, you know, how do we get the conversation going by it by this letter? Or, you know, like Polly she knows what the city council but you know, if it doesn’t get on the agenda and that kind of thing, but you know, how do we get the conversation going? Where, where they’re not defensive and all that kind of thing. And we’re, you know, dividing that place against the human services. So, how could we start the conversation? What would be the best way to do it? Yeah, great question. Right. So let’s treat that rhetorically for a moment. Karen and Karen, Roni and Polly.
Oh, you know what I want to speak to.
out, just lean right into it.
I was up to Jake’s point about,
about about staff and I’ll just speak for me so. So what I just want to tell you is that it’s not our role to work actively against what the advisors were wants to do, and we would not do that. So, so I am but sometimes it’s not all the time. Is that what I just wanted to make sure that if we were asked what you think we would say something along white with a letter that we would not have a role for actively advocate against whatever. So I did. I appreciate you making that comment and that I wanted to clarify that but i just i also want to be transparent.
what do you think we would pretty much go with about everything that you have in your letters of that template. That’s all but we will not work against this.
Thank you, Karen. Councilmember Christiansen
I also several weeks ago, I said, oh, let’s go down this deck and get this in by the August 1, because we’ll be back in the council chambers. Well, the council chambers are all done. But you know, we can’t really use them the right way. And so we’re not going to be back in there until September. And that makes it difficult to present something like this. But I I still think it’s timely and I would say bring it forward. But that means that what you should, everyone instead of us being able to actually have a conversation in a room together like normal people and be able to see each other’s faces. You’ll only sees city counts. And staff visually, and then everyone else would have to call in. But I would advise you if this letter does come before Council, to all the people who advocate for it to call in and
talk about why you why this board would like to see some discussion on this topic.
But that means, you know, everybody coming and talking, well phoning in and talking, which is not terribly onerous, but you know, it isn’t what I would like to see which is a big happy family, having a big discussion, or having a big community forum, where we could sit at different tables and people might be more comfortable saying, well when I was walking down the street one day, and I think that solely because I was Latino, somebody called the police saying I was doing something suspicious and the police did this and this and this to me, and I’m telling you this this exists in Longmont. I think that will never happen. People aren’t going to come to public invited to be heard in city council and say that they will do that maybe in a smaller group. The only way we’ll But anyway, it is what it is we have this virus and
we have to
diminish it and we will But meanwhile, we have to cope with what we have. But we also simultaneously have a crisis going on in all over this country in the fact that white people can now see on phones videos, black people have been saying their whole lives. And we have to address it.
If we change the 10% to 5% would and staff and Karen, would you guys be in more support the letter then then I’m surmising you’re now.
And no, no, Karen. Man.
You know, I know that’s really why. So, I just I,
I just I think, you know, it’s it’s really that we reckon I think it’s important to have the company, obviously. Well, you know, five is less than 10. I just think it’s that, but it’s the it’s onset of
I think of others.
my letter so. So,
you know, I’m willing if everyone else wants to do the first letter I’m willing to.
If I’m the only dissenting voice, I’m willing to step aside.
And if that’s what you all want to do, I’ve been at this for two and a half years, and if it’s important to you all, and you want, and, you know, you want it all to be together, and I’m the dissenting voice, I’m happy to just step aside.
Well, I, I would just
thank you. And
I would suggest that there’s no need, certainly to have anybody step aside because they’re in disagreement with, you know, elements of what’s being voted on. I mean, that that’s why we have a vote. And that’s why we have a quorum and a majority carries and you know, In regards to us having differences of opinion, that makes us more like a real family than the actual happy family that that, you know, we probably would all like to think we are. And I do think related to a council member Christian sins, strong suggestion that whatever if this if a letter goes in front of council that we support it. Well, we, we are there to comment on it. As members, we all can still have a voice without saying I don’t support it. Right. I mean, it’s I think everybody can say, you know, this is what I this was a hard decision. It’s complicated. Here’s why we voted yes. And here are concerns that you know, of course, we’re going to need to address so Anyway, and I just really feel like you would need to step aside because
you voted against a measure.
that our purpose should be to start conversation.
And just do we need to revise the letter to say that or to say something that would bring that about? Because right now, I’m kind of I’m thinking we probably shouldn’t send you the one. Thank you.
Thank you, Madeline. Karen, and then Karen Phillips and then I come down
Like, and it’s like I don’t want to vote on it either, because I just, you know, I want to support but I want this, but I’m just saying that the letter starts the conversation. That’s the only thing that will start the conversation that we should vote yes to send a letter, if that’s the only way that conversation is going to start. But I feel like and too, it’s like, well, I don’t know if I should do a vote on this because I don’t want to be the Debbie Downer gone. I don’t want to do this. But the conversation needs to be started. So I don’t know.
Thank you. I do have one question. And it’s directed at Caitlin and Madeline. And you know, I’m really asking this in the utmost sincerity because I’m not in a position where I have to worry about my safety. So I don’t have that lens. I don’t have that perspective. And my question is, and it’s really kind of a clarifying question. It If the department if this letter successfully reduced funding of the Longmont police by 10%. Do you feel that that bet does make in itself the community safer?
And I that’s not intended to put anybody on the spot and sorry, I almost am sorry for asking it. But I’m really trying to get down to some of the intentions and underlying motivations behind what we’re doing and what we’re talking about to understand that piece of it a little bit better. Because if you said yes, I back it in a second. I have to tell you.
a building burned down of the few weeks ago.
I think it was that Hilton that new Hilton it’s over. Anyway, I don’t know for sure which one but there was a building that burned that someone put the set on fire. And kkk was written on the front for what was left of the building. When I asked open my sisters chief butler about that and what had they investigated, he didn’t know. He didn’t know about it. Oh, one other thing the honor is black. I lifted tidbit out, but So to answer your question
I don’t know.
For for My own piece of it.
I think so the amount isn’t Of particular concern to me. It’s more understanding how that amount
is going to generate change,
the change that we’re all wanting. And so I do for a large part go back to this idea of, you know, if we said we would like to see 10% of funding redirected to moving police activities and social services into social services with the court. I don’t know what the hell to say no corresponding training, blah, blah, blah, whatever right. To me that would feel much more comfortable because we would have a clear idea of why why we want to move that money and And Caitlin I really your point about you know, the the psychology of having guns using being prepared to use force having that as a primary tool in the toolbox. You know, it struck me I mean that that is a we’re seeing that with the militarization of our police force and increasingly these movements towards more and more hostile reactions to community events. And that is, I mean, that’s, that’s real, and that’s what we don’t want.
How do we affect change in that?
Um, I wanted to ask if
others have seen there’s
there’s a document that’s put out by by a group called critical resistance that basically talks about, and I’m happy to share it with staff to send to folks. It’s one it’s a, it’s a lens for looking through looking at funding decisions, and whether they sort of increase the likelihood of the use of violence versus adequately funding alternatives. It’s something that I learned about a couple of years ago, but has been really helpful for me to sort of like frame thinking around this, these kind of questions. And I’m just I guess my question is, if folks have heard of it, and one of the things that looks at is, does this funding increase power of police in a community or does this funding increase community power, around safety, for example, and so there There are some examples. For example, one example would be like putting more money into building more prisons is a way that you sort of transfer more power into prisons and police without necessarily having clear indication that that makes the community safer. And then there’s a contrast to like funding more housing and human services, and what that looks like. And so I don’t know if anyone else has seen that like framing of funding, but it’s something that I think might be interesting for folks to look at if you haven’t seen it before.
Yeah, thank you sounds spot on. And
I think we should vote soon, because it’s getting late.
But I wanted to say maybe what we should do at this point, is I’m really proud of the conversations we’ve had tonight and the other night like I just it’s hard And I I’m just Madeline said, it’s not very complicated in some ways. It’s not complicated at all. But it’s I’m just proud of all of us for being able to do this. And so maybe the next step is just having City Council, watch these, and see how it’s weighing on our hearts and seeing how much as community members we really like. Caitlyn, I just feel for you, and the situation you and your family are in. But I have my own feelings about the police department, and I just think it’s really heavy, but inspiring as well. And maybe they should watch this.
But I think we should vote to
Yeah, thank you, Jake.
So question for Councilmember Christiansen. Thank you, Mr. Chair.
I think we’ve all kind of said tonight that that what we want including folks who support sending the first Letter. At least I’ll I won’t speak for others, I’ll speak for myself. Um, I want to start a conversation about policing. And I want to ask our council to think about not the way things as they are not about the great work David Kennedy does or about the good work that a lot of our long police department does. But ask hard questions about whether that’s really how the system should operate. And or and whether that $2.1 million we’re talking about would be better used in the nonprofit human services sector than in the hands of law enforcement. That’s the question I think, I want to ask So, Mike, but I also don’t want to have a conversation that and I am I agree with you, and I’m very proud of the board and the work that we’ve done. And I appreciate the work of staff as well. I don’t want that conversation to be. I don’t want our decision to send a letter that is potentially very difficult because I know what happens when things go in front of council to become a partisan political fight where everybody runs to their corners very quickly and where the city just I don’t think that serves our interests, right, because what counsel would, I would think would be inclined to do in that case is probably trying to, I don’t know, put it in a drawer is the right sense, but try and minimize the impact of what we’re doing. If it comes from us, so I guess my question for Councilmember Christiansen would be, do you Councilmember need a letter to start this conversation to start this dialogue about structural change and about funding beliefs? Or is this potentially something that counsel can take upon itself under the advisement of this advisory board and say, Hey, we want this conversation to happen. We want you to carry this, this, we’re passing this torch on to you and say, Hey, we really want to see this happen. We want this conversation to be had. Could you do that? Or do you need this letter? If you say you need this letter, I’m going to hold up my My support of it and send it your way. I would just think that. So I’ll ask the question, do you think you need this letter to start that conversation?
Yeah, I do think I do, because I’ve been trying to get them to do a presentation on the protocol for police force police use of force for months. And I keep getting kind of stiffed and I, they said, Oh, well, you know, it’s on the, on the website. That’s not good enough. You know, it’s good enough. Nobody cares what’s on the website is you have to have a public discussion about it. And if this board which has spent several meetings now discussing this, really feels strongly about they want to have a public community above a public discussion about it, that would be very helpful because I can tell you the minute I bring up something there will be three city council members who will oppose whatever I do just some general principle. So it would be good to have this board that has spent a lot of who are all intelligent people have spent a lot of time reflecting upon this. send a letter The other thing that it occurred to me is that we have long month public media and we can do whatever we want to with that they’re looking for content we could we could put together a community forum and have some people
I mean, it’s difficult with COVID but we could
figure out a way to do that and get some people from say, oh comity from Cirque from
when the our center people to talk about you know, because wealthy White people don’t have a problem with the police. It’s poor people who have, please. So find people who are usually served by the various services. We’re talking about, you know, human services, and have them talk about their experiences, either members of the who actually do the work, not the board members, but the actual people like Joseph and Mark who are doing the work. Talk about what their experiences with their clients and the police or better yet get people off the street who are willing to talk about their experience. That’s the way we can use public media to actually say what we would like to say instead of having it filtered through
of the bureaucracy, which is what city council is
You know what I mean? It’s, um, it’s one way we could actually have more of a robust discussion. I think it I just don’t think we can discuss this enough. We just have to keep discussing the reality of the situation of different groups of people in our society, because it’s very, very different.
Thank you. So Madeline wanted to say something, then we’ll go to Jake and then we’ll call for vote.
All right. I just wanted to correct what I said about the building that burned, it did not burn down. It burned. And significant damage was is that Ken Pratt near the roundabout, that’s the location and also wanted to add that of those organizations that Polly mentioned. We have now have an n double A CP. Just so you know.
Thank you. All right. Thank you, Madeline.
Just a follow up for Councilmember Christiansen just to be 100%.
You’re saying that you believe you do you need this specific letter with the 10% request to start this conversation? Or do you are you saying you need the support of the board to start this conversation? You need something from the board in order to go in this direction? Because just because I’m hearing I’m hearing you you want the board’s backing and support and I think we can all get there. I want to be 100% certain that you think that we need to have this specific letter as the starting point and if you do that all all support calling the question and moving forward.
I don’t know about this specific letter, but in order to have it heard before city council and start Conversation with City Council, which is important. As far as I think all of us agree. We need to have make a strong statement. I think this makes a strong statement. I don’t happen to agree with taking 10% away from the police department, I would have us try to find 10% more to give to human services. That’s the problem is that human services is chronically underfunded, and we all know that. But anyway,
having this discussion means we need a strong letter. I think this is a strong letter. It does not make the slightest difference whether I agree with it or not. Is this is a way to have that conversation.
Okay, thank you.
Okay. Let’s call the vote. Oh, sorry, Caitlin.
Sorry, I have one more clarifying question for Councilman Christiansen, what I hear you saying is that having board and or potentially community support for this conversation is what you’re really looking for so that you are not sort of a lone voice, like beating a drum to have the conversation. Is that correct? And to that end, is there because I am hearing that there are differences in sort of how folks want to approach this. I wonder if the call from the board is really about how do we have that conversation as a community about shifting of funds without necessarily putting a number on it? number one, and number two, whether there’s a community driven call for this because I think that there are members of our community that are asking for this conversation to happen, but they are not the focus Are onboards they’re not the folks who are writing to city council. They are not the folks who are in, like, the types of conversations that we’re having. But I think that there are a lot of folks who support having these conversations. And so, you know, I’m just thinking about like, I’ve seen instances where people have sort of had a public thing where people can sign on, and they share it with their friends, and so forth. And so it’s really a call for that conversation. It sounds to me like that. You don’t necessarily need this specific letter to have that conversation, but that it needs to be something that is more community LED and not Holly Christiansen, banging the drum to get city council to agree to have this conversation. Is that accurate?
Well, what I’m saying is, we need to have this conversation in many, many venues. One of them is city council because if you send this letter, it will make the police department have to come and do a present Which they have not done for a while. And they need to, they need to be answering these questions and responding. And I think they would be happy to do that. But right now, I don’t know. It’s just because they are in the midst of having a hiring a new public safety Chief, but it’s important to hear from the police and this will get the police to come do a presentation before City Council, answer some questions, have this conversation for the, for the members of city council to examine what our what our accountability is, what our budget is, many, many things. That’s one venue, but we need to have, as you say, a community conversation in lots of different venues, which of course is really very difficult right now because of COVID. But as I said we could use the Longmont public medium To have a small group of people have a forum. And we could keep doing this, you know, week after week after this conversation. They’re always looking for content. So let’s give them some content.
Thank you, Jake. I guess
my question is, are we sure that that will be the outcome? Councilmember? Are we sure that that are sending this letter will actually get the police department down to council more than the community push and councils, majority of councils and systems I guess I just have not.
My my challenge right now is
I hear the concerns of the board and I hear, you know, the concerns
I hear these concerns. So I,
guess my question is, will it though will will actually create that outcome because I’m not in my head confident that it will And then it would get them down there more than what you’ve already done which has asked for them to come down there. And I, I suspect that was a motion that was made that the full majority of council supported or not, no. Go ahead.
You’re on mute.
I don’t remember whether that was emotion that was a suggestion to the city manager. But I don’t think it went beyond that. I don’t think anything’s you know, it’s just right now, everything is
backed up and difficult. However, I don’t see any public outcry. So let’s get let’s have, this is a community advisory board. This is a board that is public that is that’s part of the job is to give city council your advice. And, and, and so give your advice. Yeah, that’s all I’m saying because no, there’s no guaranteed outcome on anything in life, Jake, but you know, this is, this is one thing we can do, and it will get something, some discussion going and we have to keep the momentum going to have a discussion about
you’re on mute again.
Nicole, did you mute council member Christians sent out a spike,
I’m typing away I don’t even have an extra hand
is it’s hot and we’re all trying to figure out what’s going on and we’re getting to, it’s getting late and we’re hungry and the pizzas on its way. And anyway,
so be an advisory board Advisory Council. That they need to have this discussion that they need a presentation from the police department about what they do what they don’t do. We need to have this public conversation. This is one way we can have it. There are many other ways and we all need to pursue them.
If I may, just real quick, you know, there there is a potentially easy amendment to the first letter we could make, which is to say that the board strongly urges, counsel. So counsel, explore the role of policing in the community, the allocation of resources, you know, given all of the background that’s been given, right, and essentially to say in lieu of that, if you know, in lieu of that conversation, starting an actual meaningful progress being made, we ask that 10% be immediately allocated And the intention there is simply to say, this, this needs to happen. We’re clear on that. And if you can’t have it, if it’s just going to if we’re going to drag our feet on it, then let’s just take 10% move it, because something has to happen.
I think that like that idea of like revising the letter in a way that says, like, we need to be having these conversations, not just this board, this board has spent a lot of time on it. I think it’s really important to actually share even that with City Council to say like, this is a conversation that’s important in our community. City Council should be having this conversation. Other boards and committees should be having this conversation in our city. Our community should be having these conversations. And, you know, and if we’re not willing to engage in those Conversations Yes, let’s just do something. Because if like the conversations would, would, are better, I think, then then just like transferring funds, but like, if you’re not going to have the conversation, do something and just be done with it. Like, if you don’t want to engage the public and the community on these questions, here’s a quick way you can just be done with that conversation and not have to, like get into the sort of weeds in the mud of it, because it is like, it’s it’s hard stuff. So I really, I actually really like that idea of if the idea is to really generate conversation is to actually push for that and push for counsel to, you know, have the police in there talking about it, and to have other community members in there talking about it. But if they don’t want to do that, and it’s not like a priority, then do something else. But make it clear that something is being done.
Well, let’s do this. It’s late and said Half an hour ago, it’s still true. So let’s go ahead and call for vote. And so the motion on the table is to submit the the first letter as written to city council.
All those in favor? Now, go ahead, Mr. Chair. I’m
sorry, I just I just need to say on the record real quick before we vote. After the conversation that I’ve heard tonight, I and I really appreciate it. I’m just I’m not convinced that the reasons that I’ve supported this, this process and I really appreciate grant bringing forward I’m not convinced even though a second to the motion after listening and hearing from everybody, I’m not convinced that this particular letter is going to serve our goals in the way that that we want them to be served. I know I’m not convinced that this letter is going to do more than start apart. In conversation, and that concerns me a great deal. So I am going to vote no right now. And I want us to continue and I can explain more. I want this to happen. I want the conversation, and I don’t want people running to their corners. And that’s what worries me right now. So I am happy. That’s why Matt, and then we can continue. That’s why we agree.
Thank you, Jake. Okay, and my, my expertise on Robert’s Rules of Order runs an inch deep and about two feet wide. I don’t even make it the mile. So I’m thinking there is still a second on the table. So we will call the vote. So all those in favor of submitting the letter to counsel as is please raise your hand, leave them raise so Nicole can make a record Have your
Great. All those opposed?
I didn’t know what Madeline did. Yeah.
I’m gonna I’m abstaining.
Nicole, my rudimentary finger math tells me that the motion did not pass.
Okay, so it’s late. And one thing I do know outside of the fact that it’s late is that we are all agreed something needs to happen. Wasn’t this exactly. manifestation but something needs to happen. Councilmember Christiansen Do you have a recommendation? or?
Yeah, at the next meeting, which is a regular session, I’m going to recommend that we have this discussion, I’m going to explain that we have had this extensive conversation and recommend that we have a police presentation with the police because we need to be have this community conversation. So, and I would like to work with and maybe about trying to do get some community survey things since you say that you’ve been doing that. I think we we could do that through the city. But I i’ve, my experience with that is that it’s the same people again and again, who responded to city and there Usually not the people who were having problems.
Maybe not the right
time, the different time. Yeah.
Right. Let’s go Jake. And then Karen. Ronnie,
I want to make a motion. Mr. Chair. If Councilmember Christiansen is going to do that I want to move. In fact, I do move
that this board
offer in our record. I don’t I don’t know quite how to phrase it. And if anyone has some phraseology advice, I would take it support for Councilmember Christiansen bringing this discussion forward and bringing it to Council.
some kind of an acknowledgment that we would like this community conversation to take place. That is reflected in our record. So I’ll make that motion and if someone has a better way of phrasing it, I would accept that.
okay. Thank you. So we’ll go into discussion real quick, Karen. Ronnie
So the only thing
the one thing that I wanted to just mention in a couple of folks have talked about it is the value of the conversations spies reporters had. Nice. Oh, you know, I think it is. We might want to think about how to how to create food or Holly, just, you know, a link to our last two meetings. I have referred people to go to look at our conversation last last time about how to have a conversation, challenging conversation by the very challenging happen, and people listen, and knowledge, respect, even shifting They’re their beliefs. You all were amazing. And I was and I think several you talked about how proud you were to be part of this body. And and I think night is also helpful. So So I think there is value at some point to figure out how to share this link in a way for folks to really look at this is, this is how you have these conversations. And these are the ingredients, having difficult come
out helping people understand
that amazing work.
Thank you, Karen.
motion on the table about
Yeah, I just wanted to see if Nicole could if you recorded what Jake said. So we can Get a clear emotion.
Yeah, I might need a little help. So it sounds like it just was motion for community conversation to be included in the advisory boards record. Is that what you wanted?
To have? You have a if you were kind of on
I had, I had thought I have I’m not sure if it’s exactly what you’re saying, but I didn’t have a thought. So. So what I understood from the motion, the motion is to formally support Councilman Christiansen to bring this conversation to city council. And it’ll be recorded in this board’s official record. That’s the way I understood it.
That’s a better way to phrase it. Yeah, that’s what I’m after.
Yeah, sorry. Oh.
No further discussion.
Let’s go ahead and take a vote. All those in favor, please raise your hand.
Hold on, don’t come in.
Or you can just
yes, yes, yes, yes. Yes. Thank you.
Any abstentions? Okay, the Motion passes. I do want to just end by saying I really beyond what we just did. I think this board should consider what further actions we want to take. And I don’t know when the next meeting is coming up.
But it’s probably in a couple weeks, I guess.
Thursday and August. I don’t know.
Okay. All right. So let’s
do you want so So Brian, do you want us to make sure that we put this as a
And the item.
Yes, please. I think everybody here is in favor of taking a firm, aggressive stance on addressing this issue. And let’s take another crack at what that looks like.
And did you have anything to add or you’re okay. Okay. On with that. Is there a motion to adjourn? I motion to adjourn. I don’t know why I knew you’d be the first one.
Okay. All those
fears on that’s why
it’s work everyone. Yes.
buddy. Thank you, Graham.
Yeah. Thank you to the community. Anybody?
Yeah. Bye. Good job. Thank you, everyone.
Oh, okay. All right. Oh, try in your head. phones cuz i agree i think it’s your fan but they said they couldn’t hear me when I had my headphones my headphones
see and I thought your headphones were better but that was just me. So
they said they couldn’t hear me at all.
So what happens is like you talk for like four here Do you want to come sit at my desk and I want
to hear what it sounds like so let’s switch and then all
that often come up. So I could, how can I hear that? Is okay
do you have your earphone in can plug them you can plug them in if you want. They’re right there on the piano. Okay?
So I’m just talking into your computer normal without headphones. hear the difference? Like you just start talking and then all of a sudden it just disappears. And I think maybe if you go like this, but who wants to look at somebody’s forehead?
can hear you. So so you’re not cut so I’m not cutting in and out or doing anything funky. variously.
Right. That is really weird. Let me like a B, C, F G. therapy. I can hear your voice. I’m going to close the door. Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah.
You just have to get a hearing
in here, and I think that’s probably why I can hear you too.
Okay. Okay, so I’ll just sit like you would like kind of back at your desk and kind of answer I’ll just read the dear Longmont City Council. We’re living in a moment where community minded people are urging their city leaders to redirect portions of the budget group specializing to addressing more comprehensive. How’s that? So I didn’t hear like the last word. That’s what happens all of a sudden you talk fine, and then it just disappears. I don’t understand what happens when you put the head the earbuds in. Sorry, maybe I share those. We’re probably violating some COVID thing. Oh, I’m sure we’re totally violating it, but that’s okay. So does that help any better or is it still weird? I’ll read the next. Therefore, we are tasked with reimagining what it looks like to get one month community members to the right responder at the right time by increasing access to the ready and willing nonprofits that are indicated in here. And is it is it like following Call it for you. Mostly Yeah. And I think honestly, I think it’s gonna depend on the person’s computer on the other end like how well their mic is so I think that’s why like Madeline was struggling on phone and Brian pop knowing Brian, he probably has a super fancy. Like, you know what I mean? Like just the more up to date thing, so it wasn’t. Oh, but that still isn’t right because your own computer you can hear my my laptop just humming it just is Oh, I can hear him. Yeah. Yeah, it’s just going. I don’t think that’s right. And your own computer. You could hear you crystal clear. All right. I’m almost asked. Yep. Yeah.
So that I had
We still, we were still recording.
No one said they couldn’t hear you. Right.
Let me go Stop it. So Susan doesn’t laugh at our conversations.
All right, stop.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai