Wednesday, June 20, 2001
Mayor-Elect Hahn Says He Looks Forward to ‘a Few More Years’ With Parks
By KIMBERLY EDDS, Staff Writer
Mayor-elect Jim Hahn said yesterday he looks forward to continuing his working relationship with Police Chief Bernard Parks for “a few more years.”
The comments came after a discussing public safety with Parks in Hahn’s first unofficial meeting with a city department since being elected mayor.
Hahn said that having worked with Parks for a number of years as city attorney, he looks to continue the successful relationship the two have had in the past.
Hahn, along with the Police Commission, will decide whether to renew Parks’ contract when it expires in August 2002.
The city council does have the right to take action if it is unsatisfied with the decision made by Hahn and the Police Commission.
Yesterday’s discussion included stressing recruiting and retaining more police officers, improving community policing and after-school programs, and boosting officer moral.
“I believe public safety is job one of government,” Hahn said.
While Hahn and Parks denied discussing the “3-12 plan” specifically during the meeting, Parks emphasized he would implement the plan if it became pubic policy despite earlier voicing concerns about the plan.
The plan would shorten the police workweek by giving officers on patrol a three-day-a-week, 12-hour shift and detectives a four-day-a-week, 10-hour shift.
“If there is a public policy decision made, it is our job as city managers and city administrators to implement public policy,” Parks said.
Hahn, who won the endorsement of the Police Protective League during his campaign in part by agreeing to implement the controversial plan, renewed his commitment to his campaign promise yesterday.
“I’m committed to implementing the compressed work schedule,” Hahn said.
Hahn, who used the endorsement of the police union to help establish his law-and-order credentials among moderate and conservative voters, had originally promised to implement a shorter workweek for officers in 90 days, but said it might take a little longer than three months to “make sure we are protecting public safety.”
The mayor-elect also renewed his commitment to implementing the plan during a speech to the Police Protective League’s annual delegates meeting earlier this month.
“I committed that I wanted to see some officers under the plan within three months,” Hahn said of his keynote speech.
The Police Protective League did not immediately return phone calls and was unavailable for comment.
The City Council is currently investigating the plan and its effects.
Copyright 2001, Metropolitan News Company