More Back and Forth Over Police Contract

They’ve been outspoken against the police union contract, now they’re calling on Mayor Taylor to “step up.”

“This is a call to action to our mayor to step up, as a leader, and take this issue on,” Councilman Rey Saldana said.

That issue: an “incomplete” police union contract, he said.

“We ask the mayor to vote down this contract on Thursday and demand of our union to cooperate with us on a second vote,” Saldana said.

At issue, what he and Congressman Joaquin Castro see as a lack of police accountability reform in the pact.

“Good officers represent the very best of our society and they should be cherished here in San Antonio,” Castro said. “But, over the years, we’ve also had some troubling experiences with some officers and it does us no good as a community and it does the council no good to ignore those things.”

Mayor Ivy Taylor said the contract should pass.

“I think we’ve got a strong contract,” she told KTSA News.

As for the concerns about police accountability reform: “I’m very committed to us addressing the broader issue of police-community relations so we can strengthen that.”

Taylor said she plans to introduce a new committee on police-community relations. But, first, she wants the council to approve the contract.

“We need to pass the contract,” she said. “It’ll be difficult for them to focus on accountability issues when they’re worried about what’s going to happen on wages and healthcare.”

Councilman Saldana doesn’t want the council to punt this into the future.

“We need to get it done while it’s within our control,” he said.

Taylor said it’s taken two years to get to this deal, she’s calling on her colleagues to pass the contract then work out other things.

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