Archive for Tuesday, May 1, 2012

City to study how much public funding needed for new police headquarters

May 1, 2012


Lawrence city commissioners all agreed Tuesday that $30 million is a big price tag for a new police headquarters building.

But commissioners at their weekly meeting said they want to see an even bigger number.

At a study session to review a feasibility study for a new police headquarters building, commissioners directed staff members to create an estimate of how much public funding it would take to address building needs, staffing needs and equipment needs of the Lawrence Police Department.

“What overwhelms me is the amount of need there is here,” City Commissioner Mike Dever said. “How would we pay for additional staffing, operations and the construction costs? We need to get a real feel for the number we’re talking about and then float it out there.”

Ultimately, commissioners said the total dollar amount to fund police needs may be large enough that commissioners will want to put the issue to a public vote.

On Tuesday, commissioners received a report that estimated a new police headquarters building to meet the needs of at least the next 20 years would cost $30 million to build and equip.

But Police Chief Tarik Khatib told commissioners he believes staffing at the police force still needs to increase by about 30 positions in order for the department to meet the current expectations of the community.

Khatib also said the department has significant equipment needs, ranging from new in-car video systems to replacement of aging vehicles.

Commissioners expressed concern about moving forward only with the building project but not addressing the staffing or equipment issues.

City Manager David Corliss said his staff would prepare a report within the next six weeks on what costs to address to police needs. He said the report also would attempt to quantify how much the city may save by having the department located in one facility. Currently the department is split between a facility downtown and near the intersection of Bob Billings Parkway and Wakarusa Drive.

The department conducted a two-month study and found department employees during the time period drove 2,000 miles back and forth between the downtown and west Lawrence facility, which are five miles apart.

Commissioners are expected to consider the police headquarters issue again as part of their 2013 budget process, which will conclude by August.


DillonBarnes 5 years ago

Ask for 10 million dollars, you'll get 10 millions dollars and grumbling taxpayers.

Ask for 30 million dollars, you'll get 20 million and happy taxpayers that they saved 10 million.

nativeson 5 years ago

There is always more need than resources to meet those needs for almost any organization. For some reason, the LPD believes they are exempt from the need to discipline their requests.

justtired 5 years ago

Why don't they study why they are denying city workers fresh water and the ability to have a safe workplace! Seems this should be a priority!!!!!!!

blindrabbit 5 years ago

The Police Department would probably save half the asking price by getting rid/not needing all of the idle police cars. Drive by the Judicial Center South Lot to get a perspective of what I'm talking about. Also others at West Center at 15th and Wauky, and the city service area on East 11th as well as parking garages at Riverfront Mall and New Hampshire Street, and those at City Jail.

John Duval 5 years ago

if they got rid of all the idle police cars how would they get to the basket ball games ????

JackMcKee 5 years ago

Why do we need 30 more officers? Lawrence hasn't grown in 10 years and it doesn't look like that's going to change anytime soon. This just seems like a money grab.

lepchun 5 years ago

Now I know why I moved from Lawrence. 5 years ago they were money hungry increasing ever tax they could, and guess what? They still are. I believe in having a police force, but I also believe in using the resources you already have. Empty buildings etc. We all have to budget why is it the state, city don't.

Ricky_Vaughn 5 years ago

Have a bake sale. Keep your hand out of my pocket!

Sunny Parker 5 years ago

An Eighty Million Dollar library is certainly more important! haha

Crazy_Larry 5 years ago

They should study how much public funding will be needed once the War on Drugs has ended. Here's a hint: downsizing of the police, judicial and penal systems. Let's make it happen.

Richard Heckler 5 years ago

It's a move to militarize local law enforcement. The lack of jobs for Americans is frustrating which is to say the government fears an uprising,

An uprising could be prevented by government putting Americans back to work so they can feed their families and pay the bills. In fact it would be tax dollars spent wisely. Spending more tax dollars on law enforcement,jails and court proceedings is a large money hole and destructive to Americans.

After all it was politicians aka Bush admin turning a blind eye to the banks operating in a fraudulent manner that killed the economy and millions of jobs. Therefore it becomes the government's responsibility to put people back to work instead of letting the USA go down the tubes further yet.

For example: * Instead of blowing $30 million on a new police station replace all of the old sidewalks in Lawrence Kansas which would put more than 30 people back to work and beautify Lawrence at the same time. A way better bang for the tax buck

  • The federal government could literally take over restoration and maintenance of the federal highway system as it should because we taxpayers own this highway system. As it is states do not maintain this roadway with any continuity therefore is basically neglected until a road caves in or an interstate bridge falls down. This would employ large numbers of workers in every state. And be good use of tax dollars.

Now if we want people to be busted let's start with the white collar Wall Street folks,banking officials and any regulatory officials who turned blind eyes no matter what their political leanings. Get rid of the white collar crooks..... lock them up and charge them room and board. Remember these are the people who killed the economy and millions upon millions of jobs. Let's not overlook Sam Brownback for he was there doing nothing about it!

gl0ck0wn3r 5 years ago

"It's a move to militarize local law enforcement. The lack of jobs for Americans is frustrating which is to say the government fears an uprising."


"Instead of blowing $30 million on a new police station replace all of the old sidewalks in Lawrence Kansas which would put more than 30 people back to work and beautify Lawrence at the same time. A way better bang for the tax buck"

Lulz. Evidence?

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