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Phoenix police want public input on patrol reorganizations

PHOENIX — Phoenix Police will be hosting a series of meetings during the month of June to receive public input on reorganizations within the department.

“[The meetings are being held] in order to have on-going dialogue and communication with community leaders and the public regarding the proposed patrol division reorganization,” said Sgt. Steve Martos. “This reorganzation is to maintain officer safety and to able to respond to calls for service as quickly as possible.”

An internal memo said 500 vacancies within the department make it difficult to “maintain acceptable precinct and squad-based staffing levels.” More than 60 more officers are expected to leave the department by 2015.

Union leaders have suggested the current proposed reorganization, which includes expanding precinct boundaries, reducing the number of precincts and patrol squads is not a fix, but just delays the inevitable. The only solution, according to two police unions, is to hire more officers.

The public is encouraged to attend the community meetings to ask questions and make suggestions on the patrol division reorganization that is scheduled to take effect on Oct. 20.

The first meeting is on Thursday evening at 6 p.m. at the Adam Diaz Senior Center located at 4115 W. Thomas Rd. in Phoenix.