Reporting Mike Campbell
DETROIT (WWJ) - Are Detroiters willing to pay more for additional police protection?
The City Council will discuss on Tuesday whether to let the public decide if they want to pay higher taxes to have more officers on the streets.
Under the 9-mill tax increase, the owner of a $150,000 house would pay about $675 a year for five years.
Revenue from the tax is expected to raise about $56 million for police services and would add about 500 officers specifically to patrol city neighborhoods.
Detroit residents could again opt out of the millage after five years.
City Council President Charles Pugh said he thinks residents should get to decide, but he doesn’t think the idea will fly.
WWJ’s Mike Campbell was out speaking to Detroiters before the meeting Tuesday morning to see how they felt about the issue.
“If it’s coming out of my pocket, I don’t know about that one because I’m not making too much,” said one woman.
“Sure, I would sacrifice maybe a video game or whatever people are spending money on, cigarettes? Yeah, I would sacrifice that to make sure our city is safe,” one man said.
“Will crime really be cut out if you raise our taxes? Really, if you think about it, it still exists, like when our taxes were lower before and we had more cops. I really don’t think it’s going to do anything,” said another woman.
Detroit’s 2012-13 budget calls for a cut of $75 million, much of which falls on the police department.
Last week, Mayor Dave Bing imposed new contracts on unions, including police and fire, cutting salaries by 10 percent and requiring employees to cover 20 percent of their medical costs. Read more, here.