The Saratoga Springs City Council, in accordance with Governor Cuomo’s Executive Order No. 203, has approved a resolution on the NYS Police Reform and Reinvention Collaboration.
On August 4, 2020, the Mayor and City Council established the Saratoga Springs Police Reform Task Force. After months of review and discussion, eleven (11) members of the community, together with the Police Chief and the City Attorney, submitted their recommendations for the City Council to improve police force deployments, strategies, policies, procedures and practices.
Many of the Task Force recommendations have already been, or are currently being, undertaken or implemented by the Police Department. The Chief of Police will review and consider the recommendations accepted by the City Council and provide for implementation in a manner consistent with such recommendations.
The resolution provides for an independent advisory committee to be created by the Mayor by June 1, 2021. The committee will assist the Commissioner of Public Safety and the Chief of Police in developing an implementation timeline, subject to applicable laws, rules, regulations, budget appropriations, collective bargaining and contractual obligations, and report progress on a quarterly basis to the community and the Council.
One of the first priorities of the independent advisory committee will be to review the recommendation for a Civilian Review Board. The scope of authority and responsibilities of such a board must be defined and then considered within the provisions of the City’s Charter before it can be established. As with other boards commissioned by the City, a Civilian Review Board would also be subject to applicable laws, rules, regulations, budget appropriations, collective bargaining and contractual obligations.