St. Louis Police Department
3:47 pm
Wed February 16, 2011

Isom: St. Louis may need to cut 65 city police officers

St. Louis Police Chief Dan Isom says the department may have to lay off as many as 65 officers because of a budget shortfall.

KSDK-TV reports that Isom spoke Wednesday to the city's Police Board. He says he continues to hope the cuts aren't necessary, but the department is evaluating how to make ends meet.

The budget for the police department is $164 million this year.

The city is proposing a $163 million budget in fiscal 2012. But Isom notes that costs are rising, too.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that After Isom's presentation to the  police board, St. Louis mayor Francis Slay moved to bill at least $2.5 million of the cost overruns to the state to avoid the layoffs, a motion that received no second from the board. Slay then moved to dissolve the board and return control of the police to the city of St. Louis.

The police board is comprised of four governor-appointed members and the city mayor.

All of today's developments come after Mayor Slay first told the state to give control of the police department back to the city or to pay for it themselves, and Governor Nixon followed by stating his concerns about giving St. Louis local control.