MILWAUKEE – Milwaukee County Sheriff Earnell Lucas presented the Office of the Sheriff’s 2021 proposed budget in yesterday’s meeting of the Finance Committee. Like other Milwaukee County departments responding to the effect of the Coronavirus pandemic on County finances, the Sheriff’s Office budget was reduced by 2.7%. In response to calls to further reduce the Sheriff’s budget, Supervisors Goodwin, Logsdon, and Weishan issued the following statement:
“We understand thoroughly that police departments across America could use some reform. Undoubtedly, certain tactics and uses of force should be eradicated. However, part our responsibility as public officials is promoting the safety of Milwaukee County citizens. The Sheriff’s Office cannot successfully keep our citizens safe on a budget that is reduced by 25% or more,” said Supervisors Goodwin, Logsdon, and Weishan.
Responsibilities of the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office include operating the Milwaukee County Jail, providing security for the Milwaukee County Courts, and patrolling the expressways, Mitchell Airport, and Milwaukee County Parks.
“We believe Sheriff Lucas and his staff are doing a great job being transparent, responsive, and compassionate towards the needs and concerns of our citizens. Sheriff Lucas is doing the good work of rebuilding the public’s trust by providing excellent service despite the effect of the Coronavirus pandemic on the county budget. To those who call for more cuts, we believe that we must have law and order, but we also must have justice. We cannot punish an entire department because of a few bad actors. If there are such individuals, we can root them out without sacrificing the entire department and the safety of our citizens,” said the Supervisors.
The public has an opportunity to comment on the 2021 Recommended Budget at the annual public hearing, which will be held virtually on Friday, October 30 at 4:00 PM.
Registration details for the event will be posted to the Board of Supervisor’s web site: county.milwaukee.gov/countyboard.