MIAMI (CBS4) – Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez rode in the Martin Luther King parade Monday and agreed with his police director that pending police layoffs – if consummated – will dramatically impact non-emergency service.

“Some of the response times, on some of these things, right now can take hours.  We may be even a little bit slower on that, but we’re not going to be slower on the violent crime,” Gimenez told CBS4’s Gary Nelson just before the parade began.  “In some cases, people calling in will simply be given a case number.  A green and white patrol car will not respond.”

Over the weekend, Gimenez’s police director, James Loftus did not sugar coat the impact the layoffs pose.

“This is a big hit for us,” a grim-faced Loftus said at a Saturday news conference.  He promised citizens only the emergency basics.

“When somebody picks up the phone and they call and they ask for us, somebody goes,” Loftus said.  He added, however, that response times to property crimes will be significantly slower, if a uniformed officer responds at all.  Burglaries, fraud, theft, all will see less investigative work done, Loftus said, as more officers are moved to the street and out of specialized units.

More than 150 police officers are facing dismissal after county commissioners refused to impose an additional five percent pay cut on them in the form of higher health insurance premiums.  Gimenez asked for the deeper cuts in order to balance the county’s budget and avoid letting people go.  He has vetoed the commission’s rejection of the pay cuts.  The veto could be upheld at a commission meeting January 24th, in which case the question of how to balance the budget goes back to square one.

Residents, particularly in higher crime neighborhoods, worry that criminals will get the upper hand if the layoffs are allowed to stand.

“We have a big problem with the police force we have now,” said Essie Williams, a homeowner in Northwest Miami-Dade.  “We don’t need to lessen the force.  Crime is too much on the up-rise.”

Some commissioners who voted against the deeper pay cuts – and essentially in favor of the layoffs – agreed that the reduced force, if it happens, will hinder crime-fighting efforts.

Commissioner Barbara Jordan – who opposed the mayor’s plan, essentially in favor of layoffs – said some of her colleagues have not been realistic in assessing the result of their vote.

“You’re going to have impacts,” Jordan told CBS4 News on Monday.  “We keep trying to tell the community there are no impacts and that’s what leads them to believe it’s okay for this to happen.  It’s not okay.”

The commission and administration were left with a gaping budget hole to fill after they rolled back an unpopular property tax increase that saw former Mayor Carlos Alvarez recalled from office.

Comments (22)
  1. DOMINGO says:


  2. susan says:

    The FBI and DEA fabricate evidence, steal from suspects and use murder to close bad cases.
    The FBI and DEA where using corrupt police, gang members and mob to commit murders for them.
    Kuklinski, Eppolito,Pitera and Caracappa where doing hits for corrupt FBI and DEA.

  3. Abraham Ben Judea says:

    Forget the insurance issue that is only but a red Herring…Here’s the real issue. The FOP retirement plan. The fact is that there are tens of thousands of police officers either active, retired or about to be retired. Let’s say they retire with 52K a year.
    That means that 15 homeowners who pay $3500 a year in property taxes must pay that amount to sustain the retirement of just 1 single retired person from the Government sector. Where in the constitution is the mechanism that allows for the taxation of the many for the benefit of a few?.

    1. TR85 says:

      Get it right buddy the county doesn’t even have the FOP!

      1. Ben Judea says:

        And the difference is? IAny organization that has police anywhere in the name is just a diffrent leaf of the same tree. They will never speak or bad mouth one another.

    2. ENOUGH ALREADY says:

      you’re an idiot Abraham Ben Judea. Pesnion are funded out of salaries from the time an officer is hired, that money is invested and then paid out at the time of retirement. so let’s say that the combined contribution is 20% (10% each) from the county and the employee which is the average nation wide.. on a 52K salary the county contribution would be aabout 10,400 a year with the county being responsible for half of that or 5,200 NOT THE 52,000 A YEAR THAT YOU CLAIM…. just about equal to what what ONE homeowoner pays in taxes so with the 20% paid in over 25 to 30 yrs the interest amount collected at lets say a modest 6.5% interest means that each 52,000 dollar a year salary has more than funded itself by retirement and those retired are not costing yoou a freaking penny, those working are and if you think you want to live in miami or anywhere else without a fully funded public safety force, just keep being an idot and you’ll get the opportunity …… again. you’re an IDIOT

      1. Ben Judea says:

        Thank god I’m an Idiot, and not an Imbecil, you of course would know the difference…
        just one question…From what magical source springs the contributions and your salary?
        At least this Idiot knows the difference between source, cause and effect.

    3. Tim Scott says:

      The pension an employee gets once retired is mostly made up of investment gains over the 25-30+ years of the monies earned over the employees working career. Historically pension funds get 7% or more gains per year from investments, so compounding of interest “funds” the plan. Educate yourself, please.

  4. poorwhiteboy says:

    All they will do now is arrest dangerous POT SMOKERS>

  5. Abraham Ben Judea says:

    We know there are many public sector retired employees who are now receiving more than 100K maybe not a thousand but many. If a homeowner pays 5000K in property taxes. This means that one single retired person will have his hand in the purse of 20 homeowners who must pay or else a tax lien will be placed on the property and then a Tax certificate will be sold

  6. gladiatorgal says:

    It costs more money to train a new officer than to keep the ones they have. Why can’t they replace the health insurance with a more simpler one like HMO’s? At least they still have insurance, but to lay off officers we need on the streets is just crazy!! If you have to get rid of the health insurance, then so be it, but at least they still have jobs to support their families!!! OR BETTER YET, LET THE BIG GUNS TAKE A GOOD PAY CUT TO COVER THE BUDGET, PLUS THE CROOK POLITICIANS WHO FEED US BULL TO KEEP THEIR POCKETS HAPPY!!

    1. devilsadvocate says:

      Ma’am it’s actually cheaper to train new employees (certified or not), not going to get into county and state tuition exemption, but salaries are significantly less. But i do agree with you on lesser salaries for policy makers, and I also think Miami-Dade needs to adopt an ethics plan similar to Browards.

  7. UckTheFunions says:

    Let them learn how things work. Taxes pay their jobs and we do not want our taxes increased which means either we lay you suckers off or you need to pay more to keep your job or move to dade county so your taxes pay for your job (70% of dade cops live in broward). This is all the unions fault that brainwashes these cops in believing they are superior to any human. This is why they keep bringing up those two cops that got killed like they are some kind of saints.

    1. I'll Inform You says:

      More like 10%.

    2. cantstandahippy says:

      I dont care how you feel about their service. youre disgusting for bringing that up.

  8. I'll Inform You says:

    County Cops do not fall under the FOP, they are PBA. When they retire, their retiremnet is paid by the FRS (The State) which is very well covered with a surplus of money from many years of contributions. The Police Officers are right, enough is enough, let the commisioners raise taxes to cover the deficit. You are stupid if you feel 3000 cops should pay this. Look around you, their is an abandoned or foreclosed home on every street in Miami-Dade County. Take a tax hit until those homes are sold.

    1. Just Saying says:

      You are correct sir. Also, people need to know the average 160K valued home, saved about 30 dollars a month with the roll back. Barely enough to take your family out to the movies 1 – ONE TIME, is causing this mess. I am ready to give my 30 bucks back.

      Also, the 3,000 cops are tax payers also, so you all can take your it takes 20 tax payers to cover one officer BS and stick it….

      1. Hell isfull says:

        It’s true. My favorite example is a pizza dinner per month. By refusing to pay that negligible amount in increased taxes, we will all suffer not only poor police service but every other facet that the budget shortfalls result in.So dummies, enjoy your phucking pepperoni. Maybe you can give a slice to the home invasion robber while you wait for the cops to come and save your cheap butt. ..

    2. Ben Judea says:

      So you want the public to pay? Lets see the True cost of how much the public must pay. Take your 3000 cops all retired and receiving an average of 52K a year that comes to $156,000,000. million per year. where in the constitution says that the citizens must give their money to support a few?

      1. I'll Inform You says:

        Ben, If your arguement is about the constitution then where does it state: that the government must provide healthcare (Obama Care), Housing (HUD), Welfare, and Unemployement. Yet YOU, the “taxpayer’ pays for all of this. I’d rather reward someone who keeps me safe and holds back the criminal elemnet than to throw it away on a select few who leach of our tax money. This is why cities and towns incorporate. They keep their taxmoney and beautify thier areas instead of wasting it on the 10% who use 90% of YOUR resources (ie police, fire, and other government agencies).

      2. Referee says:

        Round 1 goes to “I’ll inform you”.

  9. Sal says:

    There are cops which spend their whole shift or close to it simply hanging out never patrolling and never giving a damn,

    FIRE THEM ALL but keep the real cops who do care and patrol and do their jobs.

    Senority is a farce as is the theory that younger cops are better.

    Ignore all that nonsense and look at their shift and what they have to show for it.
    GPS tracking devices in patrol cars are badly needed.

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