Public Funding and the Police Essay

Total Length: 673 words ( 2 double-spaced pages)

Total Sources: 2

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Law Enforcement and the Budget

The most important stakeholders in the public finance of law enforcement organizations are the tax payers. Without taxes collected, the government could not afford to fund organizations. Municipal taxes, bonds, grants and more all go to fund law enforcement organizations. State and local taxes pay salaries and pensions for retiring officers, and yet still many municipal, state and federal level law enforcement agencies are required to borrow in order to meet structural requirements. Many cities run a continual budgetary deficit, with mounting debts putting pensions at risk. This is common across America with states like Kentucky and Illinois essentially sitting on a time bomb of debt. This impacts the other stakeholders—the workers in the law enforcement agencies, as well as the public, who are served by the law enforcement workers and the elected officials who must oversee the plans for allocating sources for budgetary purposes. As a result of this serious need to fund law enforcement, fundraisers are also used to obtain funds (FTC, 2016).

Property auctions and task force seizures also serve as sources of income for police too. Civil asset forfeiture is a law that allows police to confiscate the property of anyone accused of a crime if they believe the property is in some way connected to crime.
Profits from forfeiture can be used to fund the general law enforcement department or go to a fund for promoting some sort of public safety program in the city or state (Sullivan, 2014).

The basic process through which budgetary decisions were made in my previous place of employment was based on following the process for the city: the City members met in February and followed the Revenues Manual guidelines to predict what the city’s revenue and revenue stream sources would be for the upcoming year. They would look at the revenue cycle, tax collection, interest, and other variables to determine a list of costs. The city was mandated with providing a budget every year, and the process was extensive and stretched on for most of the year, with an official budget not being published until October. So between February and October, core services were acknowledge, a capital improvement plan devised, staffing needs, administrative review, overview by the City Manager, legislative review—all of this would occur. Through this time, the local media would report on advances made toward the….....

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FTC. (2016). Fundraisers calling on behalf of police and firefighters. Retrieved from

Sullivan, L. (2014). Police can seize and sell assets even when the owner broke no law.
Retrieved from

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