Public Can Comment On Proposed Police Union Contract For First Time Today. Here’s What Activists Want Gone.

This afternoon is the first chance for Louisville residents to tell Metro Council members how they really feel in a public forum about the new, proposed contract between the city and the LMPD’s police union. 

Spots have already been filled for the special meeting, at 3 p.m. inside Metro Council chambers at 601 W. Jefferson St. But, the 490 Project, a citizens group that wants to reform the contract, is encouraging Louisvillians to contact council members about their thoughts regarding the proposed contract. 

Metro Council cannot change provisions in the contract, but they can vote to send it back to Mayor Greg Fischer’s office for renegotiation. 

This is what the 490 Project is asking for the mayor’s office to change:

  • Add community experts to the city’s negotiation team
  • Renegotiate to add observers in the FOP contract negotiation process
  • Renegotiate to permit the parties to reveal and discuss proposals with the public and media
  • Clarify when discipline and other grievances go through grievance/arbitration to Police Merit Board or to court
  • Remove the “no layoffs” clause (Members of the police department cannot be laid off while the contract is in effect.)
  • Stop providing riot gear to officers
  • Stop erasing police misconduct records (Per reforms in the proposed contract, complaints about officers that don’t result in an investigation will be destroyed after two years instead of the current 90 days.)
  • Remove suspension without pay-pending language (Louisville officers will receive pay if they are suspended unless they’re suspended for “extraordinary circumstances.”)
  • Stop restricting or delaying interrogations (Officers are given a 48 hour warning before they are interviewed for possible misconduct. This would require a change in state law to be altered.)
  • Clarify to ensure that all unjustified use-of-force is a fireable offense (The contract might consider unjustified use-of-force on its own to be a fireable offense, but 490 Project labor law expert Ariana Levinson told LEO that there is a language conflict in the section that needs to be cleared up.)
  • Clarify to determine the nature of and efficacy of the proposed extra training for Special Investigations Division investigators
  • Mandate release of public records in police personnel files without the officer’s express permission
  • Retain all supervisory records in a permanent personnel file
  • Stop requiring the city to pay for legal fees, settlements for “bad officers.” (This also would require changes at the state level.)
  • Clarify a new clause that will encourage officers to volunteer while on the clock. What organizations qualify for volunteering?
  • Mandate Metro Council ratification of all police contracts and all police contract extensions

To watch today’s meeting, go here. 

There will be a second meeting next Monday at which the public can voice their opinion on the contract. 

To read the proposed contract click here.

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