Dear City Council Members and Mayor Stopfer,
My name is [YOUR NAME] and I am a resident of [NEIGHBORHOOD]. I write this letter to urge you to begin defunding the Irving Police Department. Instead of shrinking, IPD is growing exponentially. The Irving Police Department takes an enormous share of the city’s general fund, and that percentage has risen for the last three years. From 2017 to 2020 IPD's budget has grown 14% or roughly $8 million. While IPD makes up 9.1% of the city of Irving's budget, the city's libraries, parks and recreation services, and community development programs take up 3.4%, 1.4%, and 0% respectively. IPD's expenditures are taking away desperately needed resources from essential city programs and services. (Source: City of Irving Fiscal Year 2019-2020 Budget).
As an Irving resident, I therefore demand that you take immediate action to ensure the following:
Reduce IPD’s allocation from the General Fund
Disallow unauthorized overtime by IPD
Discontinue use of general fund dollars to pay for settlements due to police murder, misconduct, and negligence
Invest in housing, jobs, youth programs, restorative justice, and mental health workers to keep the community safe.
Invest in community development initiatives and programs.
Irving cannot wait any longer for a budget that meets the needs of its residents. The only way to achieve this is to take immediate steps to Defund IPD.
[YOUR PHONE NUMBER]