Minority group calls on council to reject Austin police contract

A group of minority organizations today issued a report card for how well the city of Austin is performing in addressing their needs.

AUSTIN - A group of minority organizations called Communities of Color United said Tuesday that Austin council members should vote against a proposed contract between police officers and the city.

The group said the city should instead use the $82.5 million it says the city will spend on the contract to instead address what they said are systemic inequities in Austin.

"Austin's police already account for 40 percent of Austin's discretionary budget," said Rebecca Sanchez, a member of the organization. "Additional funding for a budget of this magnitude speaks volumes of the city's prioritizations."

The council vote is scheduled for Wednesday. The group is the latest organization to ask Council to strike down the proposed contract.

The police union says, however, that the lack of a contract will have serious impacts on the department, including the possibility of mass retirements.

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