tv [untitled] July 16, 2010 8:30am-9:00am PST
classes. we're not going to get to police classes without more money. and so i do think that that is a very relevant topic of conversation just because we have historically cut money from the police department, not pumping them up in order to do the foot beats so it steams me like that needs to be a component of anything we look at regarding foot patrol. chairman campos: supervisor mirkarimi? supervisor mirkarimi: thank you. supervisor alioto-pier, you're quite right. as a matter of fact, based on our experience of the last four years legislatively was the tactic that we pursued and legislatively we were constantly, i think, unimpressioned by the reaction
of room 200 at the mayor's office. we should not forget that when we did legislate foot patrols as a pilot program, the mayor vetoed our legislation. and i was able to marshal enough votes to override the veto. and being the first veto of his career as mayor because of how important it was to the people of san francisco. and when we have constantly asked both the mayor -- because the police department, as we all know in this country, a paramilitary institution. their chain of command is obviously their command staff, the police chief, the police commission, and the mayor himself. the chief executive, he or her who is the mayor would have to then instruct for this to happen. that has never happened. and meanwhile, as many of us who are district supervisors who are concerned about the level of crime, public safety, and distress that went
unattended or inadequately attended, at some point we have to be advocates and cheer leaders for our own district and for regions of our city and citywide that i think warrants a level of attention it wasn't getting. with the experiment of foot patrols, we clearly had demonstrated the success of the strategy. this isn't novel. this was practiced for generations. it's a tried and true strategy. so good that that's why other major cities are now returning back to this very strategy and they're not having the discussion -- or they're certainly completing the discussion that, is it extra money that's needed or is it the fact that they want to reorient how policing is done? san francisco is not los angeles. we are a tight city. we have many distinct areas within our city that is well, i think, underscored by the many villages that sort of are adjacent to 10 district police stations. each one deserves its own strategy. and what bothers me is that any
time a captain comes and goes -- and we'll certainly ask, how many captains in the last year in various stations have been lifted in the middle of the night only to see a new captain the next day. what goes with those captains is often the so-called community policing strategy that was a part of the companion leadership of that particular captain. you get a new captain that comes in when the old captain just left and had been there a year two years, and that captain is unlike his predecessor, his or her predecessor, you've got a completely new community policing strategy that has now just been parachuted in and a community that's completely schizophrenic as to what is the new plan to deal with? and while we absolutely do want a certain level of discretion, there is literally no institutionalized commitment to this program. however, there's a great deal of rhetoric. and then the second part, in terms of the financial obligations, that's where it gets the heart of this question. and the heart of this question is, community policing and foot
patrol should not be seen as a luxury. we're well quoted by hearing the police department say that this is a luxury, that you need to do everything else first and then foot patrols and community policing is something seen second. it is not part of the d.n.a. of what i think proper policing is in san francisco. and that is at the heart of this debate. chairman campos: thank you, supervisor. if we may ask the assistant chief to please come forward. thank you for your patience, and welcome to the rules committee. this is chief. >> good morning. i don't know where to start. but i do want to make it a point, i was not the assistant chief involved in the signal light. correct? >> no. i said cashman. >> thank you. [laughter] there is no dispute that foot beat is an essential part of community policing. i'm not going to argue that. i am well aware, and i don't think, supervisor mirkarimi, you need to refeet to me that this is not los angeles. i'm well aware of that.
that is why i'm here in san francisco. the issues i have is we're trying to intertwin community foot beats with the sit-and lie and that's not the case. i'm going to allow captain lazar to talk a little bit about what we're doing in the community policing realm, talk about the fact that i am overseeing operations, the day-to-day operations of patrol foot beats is my responsibility. i have never been called by supervisor mirkarimi's office. i've never been discussed with what are we doing in community policing, do we have foot beats out there, what are we doing in the community policing realm? there is brand new to me. but there's a ballot in november to talk about community policing but yet sfpd has never given any input as far as community policing is concerned. i'm going to have captain lazar step up and talk about what we're doing. i'll add a couple of other points that are necessary and then take questions that you might have. supervisor mirkarimi: before
this goes on, i'd like to respond to that. if you remember, this was a conversation before the june ballot. and leading up to the june ballot, i did talk to chief gas con about this, and this legislation. little has changed except the fact that we had honored, i think, the chief's concerns that at the time the draft legislation of the june ballot was leading the discussions. i also had a meet and confer with the police officers association. so if they're not talking with you and you're not talking with them, then you need to tie that up. so when i meet with the police officers association, i meet with their union president and their vice presidents to discuss this. we're absolutely doing our due diligence. what is missing in this conversation in that sort of statement and assertion that you just made is that for years this has been an issue. chief gascon didn't just sort of walk into a new issue. this is something that has been on the front burner of concern
for many of us for many years. i have told that to the chief in meetings in the past with him, which is what was a corresponding discussion when he dime my office early about the whole -- came to my office early about the whole sit-lie. my response was get foot beats out there before the issue became an escalated issue in a very evocktive way so i'm sorry that that had not been passed down. you're right. you and i have not had a direct conversation. but as the chain of command and protocol goes, these conversations have been well, well discussed. >> supervisor, do you know how many foot beats we have in the city of san francisco as we speak? supervisor mirkarimi: no. but we did ask questions that have gone unanswered, the number of foot beats, which we have yet to get in the answer to our questions. and this isn't the first time we've questioned. the levels of 2008, win to, and 2010. we've asked the controller to do an evaluation. and their evaluation was rendered incomplete because they couldn't get and we couldn't get the answer to these questions.
>> i will attempt to get them personally for you. supervisor mirkarimi: thank you. >> i hi need to make it perfectly clear because this is going to be a spirited conversation. we are on the same page here. we do need foot beats. i'm not arguing the fact that foot beats are necessary. i'm not arguing the fact that foot beats are a small component of community policing. we do need foot beats. people that are going to come up here for public comment, i do agree foot beats are necessary. how we implement the foot beats, go about putting them on the street who have soul responsibility do that are where i have issues and questions in reference to that. but i do agree with you, foot beats are necessary. but foot beats are not just all of community policing. there's a multitude of components involved in community policing, and the foot beat is one of those components. supervisor mirkarimi: we don't disagree at all, chief. i know that -- you're the expert. you guys are the experts. but at the same time we are also doing our home work as to what is work and not working with other cities and what has worked here in san francisco. so i don't think we're sort of looking at this as an ad hoc or
a whimsical suggestion. this is after years of debate and conversation. and there has now been proof that has been independently studied of what works and what doesn't. if the question is about personnel and resources, we can have that conversation. and i think we'll find a meeting of the minds to make that happen because of how popular this is. and i guarantee you, you put i think an even sort of application of how foot beats are to be dispatched instead of just wealthy areas or areas that don't have the level of distress like some other areas or plucking foot beats in the middle of the night from my district and putting them into the southeast sector and then depriving people who got used to their foot beats, that's probably your best strategy for trying to increase numbers of the police department i think the police department has got that completely wrong. that that is the problem with the 1971 law where it's become a psychological ceiling. you give the people of san francisco something they want, and then you take it away.
i guarantee you this room times two will be filled with people saying we want that. and they'll demand a level of personnel infusion and resources so that it supports a strategy that they believe is also workable. >> and i agree with you. my only concern, again maybe i should come up with this after captain lazar speaks. chairman campos: i do want to follow up on something, chief. you started out, your comment, your statement, by saying that you were not the astisstant chief who was dealing with sit-lie. as a indicated, that was the assistant chief kevin cashman who at the time, as i understand it, was in charge of operations. >> right. chairman campos: that's now a function that you have. and when did you take that over? >> about five weeks ago. chairman campos: and what i will say is that i'm really happy to see that you're doing this, that you have the level of expertise and experience that you bring to that very
important position. what i will say is that the prior assistant chief who was in charge of operations has heard all of this. he was present during those discussions about sit-lie where we repeatedly indicated that in our estimation, valid as the concerns around sit-lie were that this illusion rested with more community policing and specifically more foot patrols. so along the lines of what the assistant supervisor mirkarimi was indicating, expressly that the assistant chief in charge of operations has known that this is an ongoing issue and concern for the boip of supervisors. and so it's unfortunate that some of that context was not provided. but that's not your fault. you're trying to figure out how
we move forward. but i think it's important to underscore that because this has been an ongoing issue. and when i was on the ploice commission -- police commission, the issue of foot patrols was the issue. and it was legislation that introduced by supervisor mirkarimi that made sure that the concerns for the public were addressed. and so this has been ongoing for many years. i just wanted to provide that context. >> i appreciate that. i think my confusion st fact -- is the fact that everybody here is very passionate about foot patrols and community policing, and i understand that. i serve at the will of the people, the county and city of san francisco if foot patrols are a necessary component, which they are, and the community wants more foot patrols, then maybe we should work to get more foot patrols. i quite frankly don't think it needs to be about a initiative. can sit down with everybody supervisor and accomplish the goal or task brought to me. maybe it's a different management style. again, i have not been privy to
the other meetings. that is my concern. when you look at the sit-and-lie issue, the argument in the city and -- you've got some passionate people on both sides. why are we going to put on the ballot a law when we have other laws on the ballot that accomplish that task is what this boils down to. why do we need to put a ordinance on the ballot for sit patrols when sitting down and talking about them can accomplish the same task? that's just my personal belief. now, i wasn't here for the prior meetings. i don't know how long this has been an issue. but that is my concern, is why we can't sit down and talk about this and dom some agreement as to what you want, what all the other community members want, without having to put it on the ballot. supervisor mirkarimi: chief, may i respond to that? chairman campos: yes. supervisor mirkarimi: i appreciate that that's a great opener, especially since you've been in this position for five weeks, and months more in terms of being with the sfpd. whether you are in that position or not in that
position whether i'm elect order any one of us, the idea is -- and that's why i made reference to the department orders. there is nothing institutionalized about community policing. and there is nothing institutionalized, legislated in binding, about any one thing that we're talking about. so you, i think, have the utmost sound intentions, which is why i look forward to working with you and continue to working with you. but in the middle of the night if you, like any one of our great captains, like captain lazar who was captain of ingle diagnose side who then went on to help remedy the crime lab and then his successor was there for a while and then she -- or whatever the case is. you leave. all of that great work that you would have instituted can also be undone by your successor. these strategies should outlive all of us. that's the thing of what i'm talking about. the police department is a paramilitary institution. and the reasonable i say that is that it follows and its fallback is a set of manuals
and chain of command laws that don't exist. and you are absolutely right. i'm tired of talking about community policing and this issue. but until this somehow has some arvingored enforcement of a strategy -- anchored enforcement, it's going to be done based on the personality of those in command of the police department. and that's the way the system works here. >> i understand. one of the issues -- and, again, i'll let captain lazar take over. i come from an environment that we had 21 captains in the city of los angeles. such as the young lady that came up before and spoke about the soon-to-be, hopefully, police commissioner. i came to my ways and dime san francisco. just like she -- came to san francisco. just like she left los angeles also. those captains should be interchangeable. it should be times 10 districts. i agree with you. when you put one captain out doing it differently, it has to be standardized so i'm on the same page with you when it comes to that in a perfect world if i need to pull one
captain from one district to another that captain that comes in should be able to sit in and continue to move forward with the department's goals and the city's goals. but without any interruption at all. that's one of the big issues, is the cross-training and the philosophies. i've got 10 captains that police 10 different districts, 10 different ways. and the reality is there should be some standardization of the community policing being one part of that standardization. i would love to work with you to do that as to what community policing really means so in closing real quick before i bring captain lazar, we are on the same page. i do agree there needs to be foot beats, more community policing. my issue is to why it needs to be on the ballot with that -- chairman campos: if we can ask captain lazar. supervisor mirkarimi: appreciate it. chairman campos: the one point i would say, i share the frustration by supervisor mirkarimi, that this exact conversation was had months ago which is why supervisor mirkarimi decided not to put it on the ballot and now a few
months later we're having this same conversation. i feel that if you had been there, where you are right now in that positions, maybe we wouldn't be here. but we are here. so that's the frustration. >> and i will close by telling you i don't know what will happen with the legislation. at the end of the day, the buck stops with me. i run the day-to-day operations if there's an issue with community policing, there's an issue with foot beats, i'm the one that you step up to, i'm the one that can you call and the buck and responsibility to implement that will stop with me. i give you that guarantee. supervisor mirkarimi: i appreciate that but just in the event that you're no longer that person -- >> do you know something i don't know? [laughter] supervisor mirkarimi: no. not at all. this is a dice game though. but what if you're no longer that person? chairman campos: captain lazar, thank you for your patience, sir. >> thank you. good morning, mr. chair, supervisor campos, supervisor
alioto-pier, nice to see you, supervisor mar, supervisor mirkarimi. it is my pleasure to be here to talk about a topic that i enjoy so much, having nearly two decades now in the san francisco police department, having been a captain for a couple of years now. i enjoy this topic. and i want to reiterate what the assistant chief said, that we're not here today for a fight. we're not here for even a spiritted debate. we agree with the concepts of community policing. the accident embraces it. the foot patrols. you talk to the captains that you've worked with. i'm representing my colleagues today, my captains, and the members of this department. we believe in it. and we do believe that we need to talk more before things get legislated. and you mentioned department general order that was created in 1994. well, there was a department manual that i'm going to send to you today, department manual number two, which was created a couple of years ago on community policing.
. >> i have it. >> so that itemly is the latest directive on community policing. but as i mentioned to chief gaudin, we just need to sit down and talk about that when we're not here tomorrow, yes, there's a policy in place. and it's so unique in san francisco that each district station is sometimes like a city into itself. i was the captain at engleside station. and the things that i implemented there may be a little different than other areas. i was very concerned about staffing, but i put a foot beat on portland avenue because i knew that it was important. i knew that it had been 10 years since a permanent foot beat officer was worth walking in that area. so we believe in it. and i read your legislation. over the last couple of days i've been reading it. i like the language. what i'm here today is to say that we need to continue to work together. assistant chief gaudin has been the chief of operations for five weeks and wants to work with you to make some of these
things happen. prior to having to say to us, well, you're mandated. we're believers. we're true believers. if you have questions, i'll stop. but i also want to let the public know all the great things that this department is doing right now with regard to foot pathrols. -- patrols, community policing, problem solving. this new concept that's come upon our department. chief gaudin, the scompert in the nation, now in our -- expert in the nation is now in our department teaching the captains and the members in our department how to look at timely data, have effective tactics, response, follow-ups. we're doing new things unlike in 2007. chairman campos: supervisor mirkarimi? supervisor mirkarimi: captain, lazar, thank you very much. i absolutely agree with your sent ments. appreciate your enthusiasm and your veteran experience and valid community policing. i think there are many others in the police department who share, i think, your same
outlook. this is, i think, the point of where we agree and where we may have to just sort of evolve into making the tipping point of this, i think, hamony into something that is more real in the city and county of san francisco. i think in this room with what you just said, you'll have consensus here. but there is literally nothing, again, institutionalized or binding that manifests, i think the exact outcomes and outlooks that we're talking about. and that tipping point that i am trying to motivate is part of this ordinance. as i answered and spoke to supervisor alioto-pier, we have for years been trying to mush this through -- push this through many conversations. then that resulted into legislation. because this was the chronology . then after the legislation had faded, because it was a pilot
program, it was clear that there was not the level -- the kind of commitments. and our constituents feel i think a little excluded from the conversation. even though we have great trust and optimism, especially this generation of command and the police department will succeed. it is also our obligation to respond to constituents who feel that they would like to see a certain, you know, i think strategy performed as best as we possibly can. and i think that this -- as i would like you to view it, it's not s
integrated strategically. we look at market street. for years we didn't have that many officers. now we have a lot of officers dedicated to walking foot beats on market street which have greatly contributed to the reduction in crime in that area. then addressing problems. i know we're talking about both problem solving and foot patrols. when the chief came onboard, he said that every district station needed to have a community police advisory board. this is the best practices, nationwide, successful in los angeles. it's what every captain at every district station is doing now where it's not a regular community meeting. it's a grume of individuals that each -- group of individuals that each captain selects to work with them, to be their think-tank, to be their community representatives to work with us on policy development, to work with us on letting us know what's happening in the community, to talk about strategies, the
deployment. supervisor, i read in your legislation that's a part of what's being proposed. these are some of the things that we're doing now with this community, police advisory board. and speaking of engleside station, and my experience, it was a great way to get the word out to the community, by having these folks surround me as a captain and support me. the department's enacted the limited english person, the l.e.p. program. we have policies on dealing with the multi-lingual and the monolingual residents of this city. we have community liaison officers in areas. i note captain is not doing the same thing. but i'm speak from my experience. dedicating a police officer who can be the point person for the mono-lingual residents. district stations have put together public safety announcements in multi-languages. i haven't seen this in all the years i've worked. but in the last two years we put together public safety announcements.
if there's robberies in the area, we're passing things out in multi-languages. i mentioned about comp stat. the chief will talk about how crime is on the decrease, actually going down in great part to the work we're doing and analyzing data. we offer training and community policing. and community policing and cultural compessy -- compentsy. i would say it's probably the lead in the amount of hours that we put into these areas. our community engagement strategies in this department are phenomenal. between the monthly community meetings, the newsletters. some weekly some daily. electronic newsletters that go out. the coaching of people, sports. supervisors talk a lot about the youth. officers are coaching teams. we are working closely with san francisco to form neighborhood watches. these are things we are doing. i give great credit to captain
mannix at northern station. believe she's the first captain to start twitter and the blogs. other captains have done websites. so we're engaging the community. we, as captains, designate sergeants to be liaisons to community groups. again, i'm going through this list just to tell you that we are engaged and involved in community policing. we're doing some of these things. some stations officers have voice mails and e-mails. we need to work on this department wide. but this is a great way to stay connected to the community. part of our comp stat effort, we're giving officers a daily mission so that you no longer as a police officer just come to work and figure you're going to drive around a little bit. we're trying to connect officers to the crime problems and connect them to the community issues so that when they are off for a couple of days and come back to work, it's like they never left, that they're familiar with what's going on.
the need for rapid response asign foot beat officers strategically. i think it is a real conversation we need to have about the fact that we are not hiring police officers. we do have an attrition rate. we have to be mindful of that, balance that and make it all work. the operations bureau has a policy that maybe you haven't seen, supervisor. i'd like to provide you with the copy, that talks about foot patrols. and how they're selecteded and what their role is and things of that nature. a lot of the language i saw in your legislation mirrors what that is. then the last item i'd like to bring up is about muny. crime is down. that's also been mentioned here. operation safe muny has been in effect since last year. deputy chief murphy has taken the lead on that. crime is down. for the first anytime my career