Mayor Mark Farrell Annouces Strategic Plan to Add 250 Sworn Personnel to the San Francisco Police Department
Mayor’s two-year budget proposal features $34.2 million in additional public safety investments, including funding support for hiring plan, new equipment, vehicles and ongoing police reforms
Mayor Mark Farrell today announced $34.2 million in new public safety investments, including a strategic plan to add 250 more sworn personnel to the police department over the next four years and additional funding for new vehicles, equipment and reform efforts.
As part of Mayor Farrell’s hiring plan, 130 new officers will enter the police academy in the next fiscal year, establishing the foundation of a four-year strategic hiring plan that will result in 250 new members.
“Public safety has always been my top priority as Mayor—I am following through on my commitment to add additional officers to neighborhoods across San Francisco,” said Mayor Farrell. “The men and women of the San Francisco Police Department are some of the finest officers in the country—we just need more of them. This budget proposal will provide our police department with the resources they need to succeed while we work with our communities to ensure a collaborative, cooperative approach to public safety.”
The budget also includes $7.5 million for 130 new police vehicles, $1.7 million for police reform measures and community engagement initiatives and $3 million for Controlled Electrical Devices, less-lethal safety options commonly referred to as Tasers.
The strategic hiring plan will provide increased opportunities for promotions at the San Francisco Police Department (SFPD), including 20 sergeant and two lieutenant positions that will be added to the command roster. The plan includes funding for additional civilian analytical expertise and provides resources to shift highly trained civilians into some positions held by sworn personnel, enabling the department to redeploy the sworn members.
The new hires will bolster existing public safety improvement efforts championed by Mayor Farrell and Police Chief William Scott. Those enhancements include increasing the citywide foot patrol plan, adding investigation teams at stations to allow for seven-day staffing, and expanding the burglary and serial crime units.
In addition, the new hires will support the Healthy Streets Operation Center, an interagency response to homelessness, behavioral health issues and drug use incidents on city streets, along with measures to provide coordinated care for frequent users of the City’s mental health services.
“This commitment from Mayor Farrell will enable and empower the hardworking men and women of the San Francisco Police Department to better address the evolving public safety needs of our City,” said Chief William Scott. “By providing for the additional deployment of 250 sworn members, funding for much-needed equipment and other crime reduction efforts, we can continue to meet the challenges facing San Francisco and advance our mission of providing safety with respect for all in our City.”
In addition to bolstering the size of the department, Mayor Farrell’s budget support efforts of the SFPD’s ongoing police reforms. In 2016, the SFPD entered into a voluntary agreement with the United States Department of Justice to carry out 272 reform measures, many related to use-of-force operations. The SFPD is now collaborating with the California Department of Justice to finish implementing all the reforms.
“For decades, the SFPD has been understaffed, leaving them without the ability to combat crime and the related social issues due to the lack of personnel and the need for the current officers to respond to calls for service,” said Police Commission President Thomas Mazzucco. “Strategic and fair policing require highly trained officers with the necessary equipment to address the issues impacting our city and making our streets safe for our residents and visitors.”
“Today’s announcement by Mayor Farrell is a positive commitment to public safety in San Francisco,” said Supervisor Catherine Stefani. “For too long our Police Department has been understaffed and underfunded. This commitment will provide more patrols on our streets, help address the property crime epidemic and make our neighborhoods safer.”
“I applaud Mayor Farrell’s initiative to fully staff our police force,” said Supervisor Jeff Sheehy. “When I came on the Board last year I recognized that we were understaffed and I was the only member of the Budget Committee to ask for an increase. These additional officers will enable us to turn the corner on property crime and make all of our residents safer.”